A couple who started out with a derelict six bedroomed B&B have now put their two hotels on the market with an asking price of £3.25m.
Darren and Amanda Wilkinson who own the Lawton Hotel in Charnley Road and the Beechfield in Hornby Road, have decided to look at a lifestyle change after 24 years in the hospitality business.
The Lawton, with 69 ensuite rooms, and the Beechfield with 50 ensuites, are well known for their bright green livery and are in a sought after location in the centre of the tourist zone with private parking.
Darren said: “Blackpool has been great to us, we absolutely love it. I was a window cleaner and bought a derelict six bedroomed B&B running it at the weekends and it grew from there. Last year we had 42,000 through our doors.”
He said they reinvested in their businesses year on year with £100,000 spent last year acquiring a neighbouring hotel to expand their own - now six traditional hotels wide.
“We have loved it. It is a lifestyle not a job, you have to enjoy it and be prepared to do anything.
"For example Amanda today is upstairs cleaning bedrooms after a member of staff phoned in sick. The main investment is time, that is everything in a career like this. We have been lucky in having great staff and great customers. But now it is time to think about doing something else.”
Over the years he said the biggest change had been the meteoric rise in internet bookings which now accounted for more than 80 per cent of their business.
He added: “It has been phenomenal, you just have to embrace it. But no-body wants to speak t us anymore! They book online and never phone to book.”