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Milton Group to swell Portland holdings

Horeca

The newly formed Portland Hotels group will more than double in size this July when it buys the four-strong Milton Hotels group from founders Ian and Alan Milton.

Edinburgh-based Portland Hotels was set up last autumn by hotel property specialist Colin Paton; Dave Clarke, former general manager at Edinburgh’s Caledonian hotel; and Brendan Gillespie, who was company secretary and group financial controller of Macdonald Hotels.

The Milton deal will add the four-star Milton hotel in Glasgow, two two-star hotels in Fort William – the Alexandra Milton hotel and the Milton hotel and leisure club – and the three-star Palace Milton Hotel and Leisure Club in Inverness. It will also add 445 bedrooms to Portland’s existing 275, and annual sales of £8.5m on top of Portland’s £6.5m.

Milton’s 350 staff will be retained by the new owner, but the Milton name is likely to be replaced by a well-known franchised brand.Paton said: “The geographical spread of the hotels means that each one caters for a different segment of the market, from the urban business traveller visiting Glasgow city centre to the leisure and weekend trade in Fort William.”

Portland owns the Huntingtower hotel in Perth and the Speedbird Inn at Aberdeen airport, has a 50% stake in the Best Western Edinburgh City, and holds the management contract for Piersland House hotel in Troon.Paton said the group would now be looking for properties in major cities in England, Wales and Ireland.

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