A GLASGOW-based entrepreneur has revealed plans to develop a portfolio of hotels around Scotland and other parts of the UK.

Chris Trainer, who is the second biggest shareholder in Celtic FC, is investing £30 million to develop a Radisson Red hotel next to The Hydro on the banks of the Clyde in Glasgow.

The hotel, scheduled to open in early 2018, will be Europe’s first new-build Radisson Red and the first to be launched by the new Forrest Hotels business.

Mr Trainer, who owns Forrest Media and other companies, plans to promote the hotel via the outdoor advertising firm's network of giant digital screens, spread across prominent roadside locations in Glasgow, Edinburgh, Newcastle and Manchester, when it opens.

Asked whether the Radisson Red would be the first in a group of hotels to be developed by Forrest, Mr Trainer said: “Yes, very much so. We have a property development business that is long-established, and the opportunities in terms of retail development are getting more and more limited as a result of reaching capacity with large-scale supermarkets and shopping centres, and also with the online boom.

“We are naturally looking at other areas the business can grow into and hotels is an obvious sector, especially when we can link it nicely with our media business, which us something other hotel operators can’t do.”

Mr Trainer’s company has owned the land on which the Radisson Red is being built, once home to the headquarters of the RAC (Royal Automobile Club), since 2007.

The entrepreneur said there have been plenty of knocks on the door from other developers looking to acquire the land in the period since. Those were refused because of his belief in the potential of the site, which has been heightened by the dramatic impact made by The Hydro on the city.

M Trainer said: “It’s an asset. It’s a new division within the Forrest Group of companies. Whilst it is going to be managed by Carlson Rezidor under the Radisson Red brand, it is Forrest Hotels that runs the P&L (profit and loss account). It’s not a lease, so we are very much exposed to the success of the hotel.

“But we are really quite excited about it as well because of the synergy with the media business. We can use our digital media in real time to promote the hotel.”

Balfour Beatty has won the contract to build the hotel and is on now site carrying out preparatory work before construction begins in earnest.

The 10-storey hotel will have 174 bedrooms, a rooftop sky bar and a restaurant, deli, gym and events space on the ground floor.

Forrest enlisted ADF Architects to work on the plans, with Glasgow-based Graven Images tasked with designing the interior.

The brief from Forrest, which is funding the development from its own resources, was to create an “iconic building” which would capitalise on “arguably the most stunning views of the city.”

That will include views from the Red Sky Bar, its signature feature, which will be the first of its kind in the city. It will sit above a 900 square foot luxury suite, equipped with its own kitchen and pool table.

Mr Trainer said: “Hopefully we’ll get the odd pop star staying in it.”