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Image of lobby inside TRIBE hotel

Accor enters into exclusive negotiations with Ennismore

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
Accor enters into exclusive negotiations with Ennismore

With the two brands working as one, the lifestyle entity is set to become the largest and fastest growing global player, with 12 world-class brands under their umbrella…

Accor and Ennismore, both award-winning hotel brands, have started exclusive negotiations to form the world’s leading lifestyle operator in the hospitality sector, with a clear focus on one of the fastest growing segments of the industry.

Image of lobby inside TRIBE hotel

Through this all-share merger, a new autonomous and fully asset light entity will bring together an unrivalled portfolio of world class brands, including The Hoxton, Gleneagles, Delano, SLS, Mondrian, SO/, Hyde, Mama Shelter, 25hours, 21c Museum Hotels, TRIBE, JO&JOE and Working From_. The new entity will be headquartered in London and will take the name Ennismore.

Image credit: Gleneagles

“The combined entity will comprise 12 brands with 73 hotels.”

Sharan Pasricha, Founder and CEO of Ennismore and Gaurav Bhushan, CEO of the Accor Lifestyle division will become Co-CEOs of the combined entity, alongside an experienced, highly skilled and international management team coming from the various brands and industries across the globe. Accor will be the majority shareholder of the new entity, with Sharan Pasricha holding a substantial minority position.

“Over the last nine years, our mission with Ennismore has always been creating hospitality brands that inspire discovery,” Pasricha explained. “I’m passionate about how brands make you feel, from the personalised digital experience to the design, and with an incredible team of operators and creatives around me, we have expanded The Hoxton across the globe; reimagined Gleneagles; and crafted unique restaurant and bar concepts. This exciting autonomous entity with Accor – one with culture and brand purpose at its heart – allows us to come together to build on our combined portfolio of unique lifestyle brands, accelerate our growth and explore new markets.”

Image credit: Hoxton Southwark

At its inception, the combined entity will comprise 12 brands with 73 hotels in operation with a committed pipeline of more than 110 hotels and another c. 70 hotels under active discussion, and more than 150 destination restaurant and bars. Based on the current network and pipeline the lifestyle platform should achieve an EBITDA of over c. €100m by midterm, the project resulting in significant cost synergies of approximately €15m per year.

In order to form this joint venture, Accor intends to buy out its partners in sbe (see dedicated release by Accor), Mama Shelter and 25hours. The planned combination also envisages the formation of a new company which will hold all the leased assets under the combined entity’s brands. The deconsolidation of the existing leases will have a €52m positive effect on Accor’s consolidated net debt in 2020.

A quirky twin bedroom inside Mama Shelter Lille

Image credit: Mama Shelter Lille

Gaurav Bhushan, CEO of Accor’s Lifestyle operations said: “Joining forces with Sharan and Ennismore’s talented teams will be a major step in Accor’s development strategy. With this combination, we are putting together an unrivalled portfolio of unique brands that appeals to owners, partners and guests, supported by the greatest set of talents in the industry, state of the art distribution and tools and a common ambition to continue to grow and innovate. I very much look forward to our journey together.

Sébastien Bazin, Chairman & CEO of Accor added: “Lifestyle, entertainment, places with a soul have been at the heart of our development and growth strategy over the last years. Partnering with Ennismore’s founder Sharan and his great teams will take our Lifestyle ambition to a new and exciting level. With this combination, we are leading the hospitality industry by creating the largest and fastest growing ecosystem of world class brands. Lifestyle is a sector fueled by passionate and daring entrepreneurs, constantly pushing the boundaries of a reinvented vision of travelling the world. I am proud Accor has been able to join forces with many of the most creative and talented ones. This new powerful combination is set to become the engine of our exciting future growth. “

Under the leadership of Pasricha and Bhushan, each brand will retain their unique culture and purpose, supported by dedicated teams and with the full support of their founders, including the Trigano family, founders of Mama Shelter; Christoph Hoffman, founder of 25 Hours; Sam Nazarian, founder of sbe; Laura Lee Brown and Steve Wilson for 21C, and Melissa and Mark Peters for TRIBE.

This new, unified and powerful venture will benefit from an in-house global creative studio, designing award-winning interiors and brand communication; an expert digital and technology team innovating the guest experience; and a team of restaurant and bar specialists crafting unique concepts rooted in their neighbourhoods.

Accor’s Lifestyle operations today represent c.5 per cent of Accor’s fees and more than 25 per cent of the pipeline fees. Growth will be accelerated, building on a strong footprint in Europe and the U.S., and a rapidly expanding presence in Asia Pacific, the Middle East and South America supported by Accor’s development teams.

Closing is expected to occur in the first semester of 2021 and is subject to the employee consultation process and customary regulatory authorisations for projects of this type.

Main image credit: Accor

Gleneagles to redesign its famous restaurant

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
Gleneagles to redesign its famous restaurant

The redesign of The Strathearn restaurant at Gleneagles is being led by Ennismore Design Studio and was inspired by the golden age of railway travel…

With the aim to bring back the glamour and decadence of fine dining experiences of the 1920s and ’30s, Gleneagles will in May 2019 unveil the relaunch of its famous restaurant, The Strathearn following a design transformation by Ennismore Design Studio.

The space – which has welcomed a host of famous faces over the decades, from Vivien Leigh, Sir Laurence Olivier and Sir Sean Connery, to John Travolta, Bob Hope and Her Majesty The Queen – is to unveil a new look inspired by an era when glamorous socialites would travel in style from London to Gleneagles to enjoy summer seasons of country sports and decadent dining.

The new designs will celebrate that elegant spirit through a setting that evokes the theatre of the outdoors, the beautiful flora and fauna of Scotland. The creation of a stunning mosaic-floored orangery will offer beautiful views of the estate and the Ochil Hills across the seasons, while a new stage for musical performances will complement the elegance and drama of the rich décor – evocative of first-class carriage journeys in the early twentieth century.  A new kitchen-style breakfast servery will also double up as an occasional private dining space – breathing fresh life into the area that housed Gleneagles’ kitchen in the 1920s.

“After years of meticulous planning, 12 months of interior design work and four months of careful renovation, we can’t wait to unveil the beautiful new look in May.” – Sharan Pasricha, CEO of Gleneagles and Ennismore

Dinner at The Strathearn will be an even more decadent affair, with traditional gueridon service from bespoke dining trollies bringing excitement and energy to the room as a selection of classic dishes are finished at the table. Personally attending each table, the team will add a theatrical flair to the evening, as they effortlessly carve Scottish smoked salmon, prepare and dress a salad, or flambé a ‘Steak Strathearn’ on request.

“As one of the final strands of our three-year design transformation, the renovation of The Strathearn restaurant was always going to be one of the most important phases of all,” said Sharan Pasricha, CEO of Gleneagles and Ennismore. “After years of meticulous planning, 12 months of interior design work and four months of careful renovation, we can’t wait to unveil the beautiful new look in May.”

“Originally known simply as ‘the Dining Room’, the restaurant has been a destination for decadent dining and lively celebrations since Gleneagles first opened nearly 100 years ago. It’s been cherished by generations of guests, so we didn’t want to radically change the fabric of the space or the spirit of the experience. Instead, we wanted to take the essence of The Strathearn and turn up the volume. By amplifying all the elements that are so well loved – the elegant décor, the history, the lively atmosphere, the culinary theatre and the exceptional food – the team has brought back the vibrancy, energy, playfulness and glamour of fine dining experiences a century ago.”

The Strathearn will be overseen by Restaurant Manager, Daniel Greenock, who has moved home to Scotland having honed his craft at Marcus Wareing’s Michelin-starred restaurant at the Berkley Hotel and the world-renowned three Michelin-starred Eleven Madison Park in New York.

Now under new owner Ennismore, Gleneagles has enlisted the skills and expertise of some of the UK’s most acclaimed designers including David Collins Studio, Timorous Beasties, Macaulay Sinclair, Goddard Littlefair and Ennismore’s own in-house design studio – with the aim to create designs and spaces that celebrate the rich, glamorous heritage and beautiful architecture for which the hotel is famed.

The latest redesign announcement follows Gleneagles’ Conor O’Leary winning Hotelier of the Year at The Brit List 2018 for his unmatched leadership style.

Main image credit: Gleneagles/Ennismore

ARTIQ moves into new era of experiential art

464 294 Hamish Kilburn

Art consultants ARTIQ, which is among the leading brands at the forefront of the way art is used and communicated in the commercial work, have launched a new artist residency offer for their hospitality clients…

ARTIQ has launched its first residency, a private-audience-only event programme with hospitality company Ennismore. Called Tea Sessions, the programme takes the form of an exclusive series of artist performances by the Ukrainian-born, London-based painter, Olha Pryymak, at London’s Ennismore Sessions House, a Grade II-listed, Palladian-style development.

Olha Pryymak explains the residency event to guests

Olha Pryymak explains the residency event to guests

With a number of Pryymak’s works also on show in the space, the ‘tea session’ performances, for selected guests, are based on the artist’s fascination with ancient folk medicine and were inspired by her research trips to rural Latvia, as well as by her family’s origins as herbalists. Residency participants will have the opportunity to experience a subversive take on the traditional afternoon tea, joining Pryymak for an intimate exploration on the themes of dialogue, memory and wellness.

Patrick McCrae, CEO at ARTIQ, said: “Our new artist residency offer meets both the heightened demand for experiential art by hotels and also enables hotels to create memorable, location-specific events that enhance their brand, deepen their association with their location and create an emotional resonance on the part of guests.

“For a hotel’s marketing team, the residencies provide date-specific calendar attractions for guests and an interesting reason for staying in touch.”

Pastel palette in Legacy Suite

Checking in to Gleneagles, Scotland

800 534 Hamish Kilburn

Intrigued to find out to what extent the power of interior design can lift a building, editor of Hotel Designs Hamish Kilburn checked in to review the one and only Gleneagles…

Positioned in 344 hectares of land, under Perthshire’s Ochil Hills, is a Scottish jewel. The ever-majestic Gleneagles first soared to be a natural star in the spotlight when it first opened its grand doors in 1924. Its ‘cutting of the ribbon’ was celebrated with Scotland’s first ever outside broadcast, and these moments of the hotel’s many milestones can be found injected into the fabrics of many pockets of the today’s Gleneagles.

Since the 1920s, ‘The Glen’ has served many important purposes and duties outside of being a luxury hotel in the country hills. During WW2, like many hotels of its time, it was converted into a hospital. In 2005, it witnessed world leaders tackle tough debates at the 31st G8 Summit. And most recently, in 2014, it’s famous golf course was the stage of the Ryder Cup.

With all great hotels, comes great renovations – and in this case even larger responsibility in maintaining a priceless charm throughout. In 2016, just after the hotel was sold to the ‘hipster team’ behind Hoxton Hotels, Ennismore, a multi-million-pound upgrade was announced. Calling for sensitive brushes and creative minds, the task to revamp the building fell onto the shoulders of four leading design firms under watchful eye of lead architecture firm 3D Reid. David Collins Studio, Timorous Beasties, Macaulay Sinclair and Goddard Littlefair together gave the hotel more than just a lick of paint. Instead, they bravely and boldly went about redesigning, re-crafting and to some degree restructuring the hotel to ensure that it created both a warm and inviting space which also gave an appropriate nod to its history in all the right places.

As I enter the building and walk up the steps, my pre-conceived perceptions of what I thought would be an overly stuffy and ‘far too posh’ hotel are immediately erased. Instead, thanks to the wonderful work of David Collins Studio, the large, airy lobby, which sits on luscious green carpet, creates the kind of first impression that many hotels from around the world can only strive to achieve.

Long corridors at Gleneagles

Image credit: Goddard Littlefair

The long corridors, designed by Goddard Littlefair and lit by Heathfield, are unlike any I have walked through before. It took 20 minutes for me to reach my suite. The fascinating art and original memorabilia, conceived by ARTIQ, hang on delicate gold chains as a further reminder of what the hotel walls have witnessed over the years. Although each piece is different, together they tell a tale of rich Scottish tradition, which is further explored in the rooms.

The guestroom experience

The Legacy Suite on the fourth floor is, like all the other 25 suites, aptly named after famous Scottish whiskey. The left door to room 404 opens into what is a large and comfortable living area, while the right door to 405 opens onto the bedroom. With a timeless pastel palette, the whole suite is outlined by wood panelling, which creates a high-end residential style throughout.

Formed of a lobby area, lounge, bedroom, bathroom and a dressing room, the overall look and feel of The Legacy Suite is that of a club lounge, where Chesterfield sofas and robust, hard-wearing materials reflect sporting activities and the feel of country life.

A sense of place is very much underlined in the design of the estate-like rooms. Goddard Littlefair worked with local craftsmen, fabric producers and upholsterers wherever possible, referencing the many classic fabrics Scotland is renowned for, supporting Scottish businesses and paying respect to long-standing links between the hotel and particular manufacturers.

The lounge is complete with an upholstered leather sofa, club chairs in olive-green buttoned leather, as well as a bespoke coffee table and a dining area that seats four people comfortably.

Separating the living area from the bedroom – something that not many other hotels can achieve because of lack of space – is a quirky corridor which leads to an unparalleled view which stretches over the estate. This area allows the suite to naturally breathe and very much makes the room look and feel large and spacious.

Image caption: The Legacy Suite (rooms 404 & 405)

The bedroom on the other side of the suite is a plush oasis with the same soft hues as what is in the living room, again creating a warm and inviting atmosphere. The oversized burgundy headboard is comforting, while natural light floods in through the panelled windows, which again look out onto the grounds. The flooring is a bespoke carpet and the rugs were sourced from India with varying colourways and designs selected individually to work the scheme. The rugs are in taupe with hints of green, a further nod to its luscious location.

The en-suite hand-picked marble bathroom is, quite frankly, fit and designed for a king. It is complete with a large bath on one side and a high-powered separate shower on the other, which is divided appropriately with vanity units and square basins from Villeroy & Boch with Perrin & Rowe brass finish taps. Completing the bathroom are ornate mirrors with an antique finish to communicate a timeless feel that marries up with the building’s age.

Image caption: The Birnam Brasserie

Elsewhere in the hotel, the public areas are equally impressive. The hotel shelters no less than nine bars and restaurants – of which the Strathearn is the main one and most formal. The Birnam Brasserie, designed by Ennismore Design Studio stands out as it is, unlike what I imagined, a casual dining experience designed in a conservatory-like space with many plants around the restaurant – including a full-sized living wall – playing on the concept of indoor-outdoor living to perfection.

American Bar

Image credit: The American Bar

Every decent hotel experience should end with a night cap in the bar. The award-winning American Bar, designed by David Collins Studio, is the perfect setting for such a thing. Layered with cashmere walls, the bar is a time machine taking guests back to the 1920s, complete with just the right injection of ’20s glamour, without the cliché glitz.

Meeting rooms

The glue that holds the whole meeting experience together, in my opinion, is the newly unveiled Ochil House. Inspired by the original private members clubs, Ennismore Design Studio has carved out each of the six rooms available to hire to create light, open and refined meeting spaces. Named after their original rooms in the hotel – including The Card Room, The Reading Room, The Writing Room and The Broadcasting Room – these spaces give an appropriate nod to the hotel’s storied history.

Image caption: Ochil House

“The overarching ambition of the design was to inspire, arouse ideas and stimulate conversation – encouraging guests to look around, explore and discuss, rather than sit at a table in a blank function room,” said Charlie North, design director at Ennismore. “It’s a reinvention of the meeting space concept – somewhere that’s not just practical but also beautiful, as well as homely, welcoming and fun – and a place where people naturally want to gather and enjoy conversation.”

Since checking out of Gleneagles, London – or anywhere for that matter – hasn’t quite looked or felt the same. The majestic countryside estate in the heart of Scotland made a lasting impression and it is as much a jewel today as it was in 1924.

 

Ennismore to launch budget brand NoCo

Ennismore Group to launch new budget hotel concept NoCo

999 580 Daniel Fountain

The group responsible for The Hoxton, The Hoxton Shoreditch and recent acquisition Gleneagles is to launch a new budget hotel brand concept called NoCo.

Ennismore is aiming to open 25 NoCo hotels in key cities across the UK, with the first opening in 2018.

Each NoCo site will have between 150 and 200 rooms, with rates under £100. Guests will book and check-in for each hotel using a bespoke app. Guestrooms will be compact yet comfortable, and the eateries will aim to become destinations in their own right, much like at The Hoxton.

Sharan Pasricha, CEO of Ennismore said, “We’ve created NoCo to challenge the status quo of today’s budget brands. Travelling habits and demands have changed; as has the way that people now use hotels.

“Our aim is to raise the bar for affordable hotels and provide business and leisure travellers with a stylish alternative to bland, cookie cutter hotels so often found in cities outside of London,” he added.

Ben Russell, acquisitions director at Ennismore, added, “We have shortlisted several key cities, beginning in the UK, and are looking to work with progressive property partners on leasehold opportunities to roll-out the NoCo brand.

“We believe our exciting plans for the product coupled by our track record with The Hoxton makes Ennismore a strong proposition for local developers looking to build out hospitality assets,” he added.