May 23 2013 Latest news:
Wednesday, March 13, 2013
Two million pounds worth of developments at an iconic north Norfolk hotel are now just weeks away from completion.
The work being carried out at The Hoste Arms, in Burnham Market, includes the building of a new garden room, a New Zealand-style lodge dining area, a new open pass kitchen, four new bedrooms, refurbishment of seven existing bedrooms, the spa being doubled in size, a new entrance area being created and the existing reception being transformed into a retail area which sells books about the local area.
The work is being done for Brendan and Bee Hopkins, who bought The Hoste in April last year.
It is due to be completed by May 6.
The couple are good friends of the The Hoste’s previous owner, the late Paul Whittome and his wife Jeanne, who significantly expanded the business after buying it in 1989.
The Hopkins returned to the UK from Sydney, Australia, where they had been based for the last decade.
Mr Hopkins was the chief executive of Australia’s second largest media organisation, APN Media.
They talked with the Whittomes for some time about the redevelopment plans before they bought The Hoste.
Mr Hopkins said: “One of the main reasons we bought The Hoste was to ensure that this iconic hotel remained an independently-owned business with its own unique character and wasn’t just sold to a big national company. Business has been going very well since we took over and we are looking forward to the completion of this work to take the business to the next level.
“It is very important to not sit still and to diversify in business.”
Much of the work is being carried out by Wisbech-based Robson Construction.
Mr Hopkins said: “They are doing a fine job.
“I want to thank all of our customers and neighbours for the patience they have shown while this work has been done.
“We have been running acclimatisation tours for staff to enable them to get used to the new facilities.
Many customers have joined these, and it is very pleasing to see them showing such an interest.”
The expansion is expected to create between eight and 10 new jobs.
Norfolk turkey giant Bernard Matthews is in talks to sell a stake in the business.