The country hotel with links to the famous Scottish poet Robert Burns changes hands for the first time in 80 years
Friars Carse, a country house hotel located on the Robert Burns Heritage Trail in the Nith Valley of Dumfriesshire, has been sold to a UK-based buyer in a deal brokered by global real estate advisor Colliers.
The 21-bedroom former country house, owned by the Post Office Fellowship of Remembrance (POFR) which operates under the Classic Hotels brand, has been purchased for an undisclosed sum off a guide price, of £1,300,000 following significant national and international interest. The anonymous private buyer, based in London, intends for the business to continue running with the existing management and compliment of staff.
The hotel is on the land of the former home of Robert Riddell, who became a friend of the famous lyricist when he lived on the neighbouring Ellisland Farm, and featured in one of his poems. The existing property, set in more than 30 acres of parkland, dates back to 1873, and was brought to the market for the first time in around 80 years by Colliers, acting as sole agent on behalf of the owner.
Julian Troup, head of UK Hotels Agency at Colliers, said: “Friars Carse is the most significant single asset hotel opportunity to become available in the area, and this sale, during an elevated period of uncertainty, brought about by the effects of COVID-19 shows how high quality hotel assets will continue to appeal to the market.
“We succeeded in achieving significant domestic and overseas interest from our open marketing campaign. We were instructed to invite offers from the extensive list of interested parties which resulted in a good deal of genuine interest.”
Mr Troup added that despite the challenges resulting from the pandemic and lockdowns, the hotels market had remained active. “The Hotels Agency team at Colliers has sold at least one hotel a week since the beginning of 2021. The fact that we are continuing to see sales and acquisitions shows the underlying demand from prospective purchasers. It also demonstrates the ability of Colliers to attract a regional, national and global audience,” he said.
The sellers were legally represented by John Dunlop of Shoosmiths LLP and the buyer by Kevin McGlone of DWF LLP.
Located in the Nith Valley, only a short distance north of Dumfries off the main A76 road. The property also boasts an excellent range of public rooms, including 46-cover restaurant, fixed marquee which is popular for weddings, three self-catering cottages as well as 1.25 miles of privately-owned riverbank along the River Nith which can be used for salmon fishing.