Having transformed a dilapidated former care home to a thriving, contemporary hotel eight years ago, James Hill, owner of the 15-bedroom Hampton Manor Hotel in Solihull is now working to put his restaurant with rooms among the elite in the industry.
Together with his father, Hill transformed the former Grade-II listed care home in less than a year into a stylish boutique, overcoming construction issues all without the aid of a main contractor.
In its first year, the hotel secured 70 wedding bookings and that has proved to be the bedrock of its business. And in 2016, it did 90 weddings.
At the end of 2016, the business was on target to turn over £2.5m, which Hill admitted was “not bad for a 15-bedroom hotel”. Family ties run right the way through the business — James’ wife Fiona is creative director and his three sisters and their husbands all form a board.
Hampton Manor has no pressure from external investors – the property is largely funded by the proceeds that parents Derrick and Janet made when they sold the Pear Tree Inn and Country Hotel in Worcester, with Hill saying there was only about £300k of borrowed money in the business in 2016. Hill’s hard work paid off, and in 2016, the hotel’s Peel’s restaurant was awarded a coveted Michelin star, and Hampton Manor started to get the recognition it deserves. Hill isn’t stopping here however. Plans are afoot to increase capacity and build additional rooms within the next five years at Hampton Manor, as well as create a cookery school and beauty facilities to really establish the business as one to watch.