Crerar Hotels sees bookings spike

Reservations rise after indicative reopening date set

Chris Wayne-Wills outside Loch Fyne Hotel and Spa
Photo credit: Robert Perry. Chris Wayne-Wills was appointed chief executive of the group last year.

CRERAR Hotels has reported a sharp spike in bookings since the indicative reopening date of 26th April was announced by first minister Nicola Sturgeon.

The group, whose seven-strong portfolio includes Oban Bay Hotel & Spa, The Glencoe Inn and Isle of Mull Hotel & Spa, saw a 130% week-on-week increase in booking revenues following the announcement that travel restrictions are expected to be lifted and tourist accommodation to reopen from 26th April. Online visits are said to have increased by 170%.

Chris Wayne-Wills, chief executive of Crerar Hotels, said the group had taken more than 1800 bookings in the days immediately following the Scottish Government announcement.

“Our reservations team have been exceptionally busy since the first minister announced 26th April as the date for Scotland’s tourism industry to be able to reopen – with booking revenues almost tripling week-on-week,” he said.

“When speaking to our future guests, it seems the real luxury they’ve been missing from their lives since the pandemic hit last year is something we used to take for granted – and that’s choice.

“There’s a real appetite to spend longer breaks with friends and family, celebrating missed milestones, making up for lost time and making memories in a way none of us have been able to for at least a year. We pride ourselves on giving our residents whatever they want to ensure a special stay, but we’re geared up to take that to the next level when we reopen our doors across our portfolio on 26th April.”

Crerar Hotels is currently running its ‘I Choose’ marketing campaign in a bid to showcase the breadth of choice tourists will have when they are free to travel throughout Scotland again. And Wayne-Wills reckons the immediate rush of staycationers will “breathe life back into the tourism industry”.

“The ‘I Choose’ campaign that we launched in preparation for coming out of lockdown really homes in on those messages – we want to make it clear to guests that, whatever they want, we can make it happen at any of our locations,” he added.

“Now we’ve been given the word, we are ready to open our doors and give guests a quintessentially Scottish experience with low-key luxury at its heart – as well as the freedom to enjoy their stay exactly as they want to – come 26th April.”