The acquisition of the Grand Jersey, which had been put on the market by Savills on behalf of RBS Real Estate Asset Management in May for a minimum of £15m, comes after a year of upgrades throughout the group – with £4.1m spent on refurbishing bedrooms, public areas and leisure facilities.
Hand Picked Hotels chairman and CEO Julia Hands said: “We have seen the potential for increased corporate and conference business across the Channel Islands, with strong demand from clients in London and other feeder cities throughout the UK.
“Grand Jersey will enable us to attract conference and corporate business which tends to focus on St Helier, while L’Horizon Hotel and Spa at St Brelade’s Bay appeals to a more leisure-oriented audience.
“We have recently spent £1m on the development of a large Spa at L’Horizon to position it as a year-round destination. We are also planning an extensive redevelopment programme at St Pierre Park Hotel and Golf Resort.”
The 5-star, 123-bedroom hotel on the Esplanade of St Helier includes Jersey’s first Michelin-starred restaurant, Tassili, as well as Victorias brasserie, a terrace for al fresco drinks and a champagne lounge.
It also features a dedicated business centre with private cinema, meeting rooms and events space, and the spa includes treatment rooms, an indoor heated pool, sensory experience showers, steam room, Jacuzzi and gym facilities.
Grand Jersey becomes part of the Hand Picked collection immediately, and full rebranding will take place in 2015.
This is the brand’s fourth acquisition in the past three years, after Fawsley Hotel and Spa near Silverstone in Northamptonshire, St Pierre Park Hotel and Golf Resort in Guernsey and Bailbrook House Hotel in Bath – which was bought in 2012 and joined the collection in October 2013 following a £10m restoration.
The group, which now operates 21 hotels across the UK, had a turnover of £58.1m in the year ended in November 2013, compared to £58.8m the previous year, despite a 7 per cent increase in EBITDA to £8.9m.
Overall occupancy increased by 0.3 per cent from 2012 and the group grew room revenue per available room by 0.2 per cent.
According to a Telegraph article confirmed by Hand Picked, the firm has fallen £2.2m deeper into bank debt due to depreciation and interest charges.