By Ian McConnell

AIRDS Hotel & Restaurant at Port Appin in Argyll is to undergo a £400,000 refurbishment over the next two winters, with a joint asset management venture agreed by its owner seeing the property join the hospitality portfolio of Fusion Group.

The hotel’s owners of 19 years, Shaun and Jenny McKivragan, retired in December 2021, and the 11-bedroom luxury property was acquired by Scottish businessman Benjamin Andrews.

Fusion’s dedicated accommodation services division has taken over the reservations operation and specialist hotel management company EHM has been awarded a three-year contract to operate the hotel.

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Alex McKie, group managing director of Fusion, said of Airds Hotel & Restaurant: “With an array of awards to its name, it has a proven track record in attracting an upmarket foodie clientele in the beautiful setting of Port Appin, a clientele we will grow and further develop with efficient management, staff development and recruitment, together with our accommodation services division boosting bookings with their expertise in reservations and marketing. We will also be carrying out a £400k refurbishment over the next two winters, during which time the hotel and restaurant will remain open and trading.

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“Normally in our sector, a business management and profit-sharing model is only applied to a larger 60-bedroom plus property, but we have developed this for smaller operators, knowing that we have the skill and expertise to make it work. It can be particularly useful for an absent owner who wishes to concentrate on other business areas, but wants his hospitality business to be well run and maximised in potential throughout.”