The Loch Shiel Hotel is a most substantial and attractive property, within an exceptional setting adjacent to the south west extremity of Loch Shiel. The business has a strong presence from excellent signage and is situated on the main road through the village. The hotel is also prominent in that it is situated at the eastern end of the Ardnamurchan peninsula which is a popular tourist destination being the most westerly point of the British mainland and offering access to a number of the western isles of Scotland. The property dates from the late 1800s and has been a continuously strong part of the locally economy providing a wide range of services for locals and visitors to the region. The business benefits from a tranquil trading location within a mystical setting. Testament of such was that Loch Shiel was used as the backdrop for some of the scenes in the Harry Potter franchise of movies.
The property has 10 guest bedrooms with only 8 being only used for letting at this time. There is scope, with minimal expense, for new owners to bring the 2 un-used rooms into income earning capacity. The hotel boasts attractive public areas with a 24-cover dining room, a cosy public bar plus games area and a sun room used as a further dining area (20 covers) offering a superlative outlook. In addition, the Loch Shiel has a significant area of gardens laid to grass, a children’s play area and a raised decking area which is popular with guests wishing to take meals and refreshments alfresco during the summer months. The service areas are all of a high standard with a modern kitchen, laundry and ample storage space. These excellent trading areas are ably supported with a 3-bedroom cottage and a studio flat; these two units can be used as family or staff accommodation as required.
The vendors during their tenure have undertaken a wide range of infrastructure and decorative upgrades which means that the property is presented in walk-in condition. Key to these upgrades was a new central heating system, new shower rooms and updates to customer bathrooms situated off the bar. The present owners rely on a full team of staff to operate the business and it is believed that new proprietors with a hands on role would be able to take the turnover and profitability to the next level.
REASON FOR SALE
The current owners purchased the hotel in 2013 and immediately engaged in a series of upgrades and redecoration. During this time they have generated a good level of trade but have decided to sell as they believe that the trading aspects would benefit from a hands-on operator who can drive the business and imprint their own vision on this lovely hotel.
The business is ideally situated to take advantage of the many tourists who visit the abundance of attractions in the surrounding region. The Loch Shiel Hotel is often used by business operators in the region and has a strong local clientele. During the main season, there is a high level of tourism generating a peak of trading from Easter to September. Many guests pre-book their accommodation via a number of portal websites including booking.com. The business also utilises the Free-to-Booking automated accommodation booking system which allows guests to book directly with the hotel via its excellent website (http://lochshielhotel.com). The hotel has potentially 10 letting bedrooms, 2 of which have not been used by the current operator for letting purposes in recent years which allows for further business growth should these be used for income generation by new owners. The bar is popular with guests and locals alike and features a games area. Food is served in the restaurant (24 covers) and the sun room which has a further 20 covers.
During the summer the business opens 7 days per week and from midday until late evening. Winter trading is reduced to 5 days per week opening 4:30pm – 11pm Wednesday to Friday and midday to 11 pm Saturday and Sunday.
The current owners trade mainly under management and as such they believe that the business has greater growth potential where new owners adopt a hands-on role within the hotel. The business has a strong track record with turnover sitting at £312,000 as at the year ending 31st Jan 2018. Income is spread across the 3 main income streams of wet sales, accommodation income and food service. New owners could, if they so desire, trade the business on a seasonal basis or reconfigure the operational aspects to suit their own preferences.
Loch Shiel is located in an idyllic and enviable setting amongst some of the finest scenery on the West Coast of Scotland's, Ardnamurchan Peninsula. The hotel is situated 100 metres from the south west extremity of Loch Sheil which is a fresh water Loch. The area is a world-renowned tourist destination and given the association with the Harry Potter movies, the visitor numbers are only expected to continue to rise. Within the broader area there are a great many historical sites and places of interest.
Situated in the tranquil village of Acharacle, the hotel is surrounded by stunning mountain scenery and benefits from wonderful loch views. The area boasts an abundance of wildlife with pine marten, otter, the majestic red deer, golden and white-tailed sea eagles all in the vicinity. Acharacle offers the perfect base for visitors to undertake an odyssey of the West Coast. The region has many historic sites, beaches and castles nearby, as well as it being accessible to the Isle of Mull. Acharacle is a semi-rural village which is very well served by extensive amenities to include a large, well-stocked and licensed grocery shop, bakery with cafe attached, fish and chip shop, garage, internet coffee shop, medical centre etc. The village has a vibrant community. There is a school, a nursery, several churches as well as bus connections to and from Fort William with onward connections to Glasgow and Inverness.
The hotel’s main entrance provides access to a vestibule which in turn leads to an inner hallway. The dining room is situated to the right and the Lairds bar to the left with stairs leading to the first and second floors providing access to the letting bedrooms. A door to the rear leads to the reception desk / office. The dining room is a cosy venue to enjoy a formal meal and benefits from an open fire place with an ornate wood surround. The bar has three separate areas; the games area with a pool table and darts lane, the bar servery and a soft furnishings area. The bar also has a solid fuel fire and is presented with contemporary décor. Off the bar is a lovely sun room which has 20 covers and offers unobstructed views of the garden grounds and the loch beyond. The sun room has patio doors leading to the garden. There are modern ladies and gents washrooms off the bar. There is a separate entrance to the bar from the side of the subjects, where the raised decking area can also be found.
The hotel potentially has 10 comfortable letting bedrooms of which 2 are not used currently for letting purposes. All of the 8 in use letting bedrooms have modern en-suite facilities and are configured as follows:
Room 1 - Double room with en-suite shower
Room 2 - Double room with en-suite shower
Room 3 - Double room with en-suite shower
Room 4 - Twin room with en-suite shower
Room 5 - Double room with en-suite shower
Room 6 - Twin room with en-suite shower
Room 7 - Double room (4-poster) with en-suite bathroom with shower over
Room 8 - Double room with en-suite shower
Room 9 - Single room with en-suite shower
Room 10 - Double room with en-suite shower
Rooms 2, 3, 6 and 7 benefit from loch views. All in-use letting rooms are attractively furnished and well-appointed with TVs, modern lights, hospitality trays and ample storage. The bedrooms are centrally heated.
The hotel has a well-appointed kitchen with a full commercial catering capability including vented extractor system. Many of the appliances and facilities have been newly acquired and the kitchen is well-located to support food service to both the bar and dining room. There are storage rooms off the kitchen plus there is a large store in sheds immediately behind the kitchen door; these areas include freezer facilities. The hotel has ample storage throughout including linen store, beer cellar, boiler room and external laundry.
There are two distinct areas offering potential owners’ / staff accommodation. The main private space is set to a cottage to the rear of the hotel. This spacious accommodation provides a flexible living area with a lounge, kitchen and 3 bedrooms plus family bathroom. There is also a studio unit set within the grounds. This accommodation includes an open plan living space and shower room.
The subjects are located within the village of Acharacle on the main road benefitting from excellent signage. There is spacious car parking to the rear of the hotel which can accommodate about 15 standard vehicles. There is an outdoor decking area situated to the side of the building plus additional bench seating to the front and a children’s play area. There are a number of external buildings which are used for general storage and a laundry which may offer some development potential subject to consents.
The subjects benefit from mains electricity, water and drainage. There is oil-fired central heating. LPG gas is provided for cooking. The building is partially double glazed. The property has Wifi.
The present business operates with a mix of 2 full-time and 4 part-time staff who cover house-keeping duties and bar work. During the summer months part-time casual staff are employed to cover peak trading periods.