Care group swoops for holiday venue

The Esplanade in Llandudno.

The Esplanade in Llandudno.

A Blackpool-based care provider owned by entrepreneur Simon Rigby has bought a North Wales hotel with an asking price of £1.2m.

Safehands, which employs 400 and has 20 sites from Penrith to Crewe, snapped up the four-storey Esplanade Hotel in Llandudno from the Payne family.

Bosses plan to convert the hotel into a “five star” holiday venue for disabled people and their carers. It is thought 18 further jobs will be created at the hotel after a major 
refurbishment due before this summer.

The 59-bed hotel has been owned by the Payne family since it was established by Jack Payne, the founder of J E Payne Ltd, in the 1920s.

It was created from five Victorian townhouses and guests have included Labour Prime Minister Harold Wilson and the Duke of Kent.

Gwenda McDonald, the granddaughter of the founder, has sold the hotel as she is now retiring from the hotel trade.

Neil Thomson, associate director in Colliers International hotels team in Manchester which sold the hotel, said: “Gwenda and her family are genuinely happy to have sold the hotel to a business that provides an excellent service to people with a range of disabilities and offers respite for their families.”

Safehands was founded in 1997 and currently operates a specialist hotel for disabled people and their families in Blackpool called the New Mayfair, which it bought in 2011.

Paul Manning, managing director of Safehands Care, said: “As a company we specialise in creating opportunities for individuals and groups who may have additional needs. The Esplanade Hotel will further complement our existing offering in Blackpool.

“Safehands Holidays investment into the hotel and Llandudno will create a host of new employment opportunities and significant benefits to the local economy.”

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