Sheikh back in control at landmark city hotel

The Scotsman Hotel
The Scotsman Hotel
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THE future of the five-star Scotsman Hotel has been secured after it was bought out of administration – by the same owner.

It emerged last month that the landmark North Bridge hotel was expected to be sold after it was placed in the hands of administrators following a reported breakdown in talks between bankers Lloyds and the ultimate owner, Arab entrepreneur Sheikh Mohamed Bin Issa Al Jaber.

However, it was today revealed that Sheikh Mohamed has bought the Scotsman Hotel Group – which includes hotels in Leeds and Paris – out of administration and is planning a £65 million investment.

The deal, which was completed for an “undisclosed” sum, re-establishes Sheikh Mohamed’s control.

It has also today been confirmed that no redundancies were made during the time it was in administration.

Colin Paton, chairman of the Edinburgh Hotels Association, said there was never any doubt that the Scotsman would continue operating as a hotel.

He said: “It is one of Edinburgh’s many successful hotel businesses. To look at it clinically, it was always going to remain a hotel because of the value of the asset.

“It’s a great and understandable sign of commitment and confidence in the Edinburgh hotel market that he [Sheikh Mohamed] is prepared to buy it out of administration and invest in it.”

KPMG was assigned as administrator to the Scotsman Hotel Group last month.

The other hotels in the group are the boutique 42 The Calls in Leeds and the Hotel de la Trémoille in Paris.

A spokesman for KPMG said: “The joint administrators can confirm that all employees’ jobs at the hotel were transferred to the purchaser as part of the sale and that no redundancies have been made during the administration.”

The Scotsman Hotel declined to comment.