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• Excellent Highland hostel business providing a flexible mix of accommodation offering a versatile and easy-to-operate trading model.
• Profitable lifestyle business generating turnover under the VAT threshold and strong profitability (Circa £59,000 as March 2020), all in a stunning area which is a popular year-round outdoor activities destination.
• Àite Cruinnichidh is a high-quality hostel, ideally positioned close to Ben Nevis and Nevis Range Ski Centre; an ideal location for walking, climbing, canoeing, and mountain biking, mountaineering and ice climbing.
• The hostel has a trading capacity for up to 28 guests with some latent accommodation development potential within the building, subject to consents.
• There is also an attractive 3/4-bedroom house, ideal for an extended family or for further income generation, all within about 1 acre of grounds providing scope for further development subject to planning permission.
With its own private grounds, the owners house is presented to a very good standard, offering a large home benefitting from stunning views and flexible accommodation for an extended family. The house is deceptively spacious offering up to 4 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms 2 lounges, 2 kitchens, a utility room and a large conservatory.
Access to the house is via either a porch to the rear aspects leading to the secondary kitchen or through a large conservatory at the front of the building. The conservatory is sufficiently large to accommodate a substantial dining table and other comfortable furnishings. A door leads from the conservatory into the main kitchen which is well-appointed with wall and floor-mounted units plus fitted appliances. The kitchen is sufficiently spacious as to fit a dining table. Off the main kitchen is a secondary kitchen / food preparation area which also has additional storage plus a Belfast sink. From this kitchen a door leads to an inner-hallway with stairs to the first floor and a door leading to two adjoining living rooms. The first living room is spacious and has a wood-burning stove. The secondary area which is open-plan is set to an office layout. With double aspect windows, these two room combine to make a charming living space. From the secondary kitchen access is also gained to a utility room, which benefits from additional storage and a further Belfast sink, and thereafter a further hallway with stairs to the first floor ‘Den’ but also access to a family bathroom and a large shower room. Both the shower rooms and bathroom are well-presented and tiled throughout.
There are two further rooms within the house on the ground floor but both are accessed by separate doors from the garden. One is a large drying room which can be utilised by guests and the other provides further general storage and has potential to be turned into a laundry.
At the top of the main stair case is a spacious landing area and 3 large double bedrooms. An attractive feature of this home is a gallery room known as the ‘Den’ accessed from the steps at the west end of the house which is currently used as a study / relaxation room. This area could be used as a further bedroom or a studio flat for extended family or staff.
The area around the business is renowned for its outdoor activities including walking and climbing in the summer months with skiing and ice-climbing being popular in the winter. Àite Cruinnichidh sits 15 miles northeast of Fort William, occupies a unique sheltered spot adjacent to the Monessie Gorge, ideal for exploring remote glens, mountain passes and lochs. There is no light pollution and on a clear night the sky is breath taking, so great for night sky watchers. There are numerous walks easily accessible from the hostel and 7 magnificent canoeing rivers within 20 miles. Tourism and adventurous pursuits are the key drivers of trade and includes the many visitors who fish, undertake walking, cycling and climbing holidays or partake in a more sedate excursion of the Highlands, taking in the many sites and historical features.
For walkers the range of terrain provides a great variety in the level of challenge from non-technical hill-walking to more strenuous mountaineering. There are numerous mountains in this area located within easy reach, Ben Nevis, the Munros and Corbetts and two long distance walks the Great Glen Way and the East Highland Way. Numerous national and international sporting events occur in the area throughout the year bringing even more visitors. For mountain bikers there are plenty of demanding venues, both at Nevis Range which is close by, as well as Laggan Wolftrax. In addition to the usual car touring holiday makers this property is well located for the world-famous Jacobite Steam train which operates twice daily from May to October carrying up to 600 passengers per day. This train travels over the Glenfinnan viaduct featured in the Harry Potter movies and brings many fans of the films to this area.
The village of Spean Bridge is close by and has a number of facilities including visitor attractions, 9-hole golf course, shops and restaurants. The area has an abundance of wildlife, attracting ornithologists and naturalists with red deer, pine marten, otter, osprey, red squirrels, elusive golden eagles and rare butterflies helping to attract visitors. There is primary schooling at Spean Bridge (5 miles) and Secondary Education in Fort William. Roy Bridge has a train station on the West Highland line which links Glasgow to Fort William. The Caledonian sleeper service from London to Fort William uses this line, which passes in front of the hostel. Guests staying at the hostel are treated to the sounds and sight of steam trains during the main holiday season.
Àite Cruinnichidh (gathering place) hostel sale comprises of an attractive bunkhouse and the other is a spacious house. The subjects originate from 1878 but represent a well-organised business and family home. This charming bunk-house business and can accommodate up to 28 guests in 8 separate rooms. However, there is scope to add further accommodation within the existing building without the need for significant investment, adding either a further self-contained flat or additional bunk rooms. The hostel is a traditional facility providing high quality accommodation for the budget explorer and traveller. Within the subjects is a substantial 3 / 4-bedroom house offering excellent family accommodation or the potential, to provide further letting accommodation. Within this 1-acre site is some latent development potential, subject to consents, to provide pods or self-cater facilities. The site includes ample amenity space plus parking. The business benefits from a stunning location offering superlative views. The sale of Àite Cruinnichidh Hostel presents an excellent opportunity to acquire an established business whilst offering a comfortable home and lifestyle self-employment opportunity.
Àite Cruinnichidh hostel trades year-round just under the VAT threshold but to a sound level of profitability (circa £59,000 as at March 2020). The levels of trade are restricted to offer the current owners a lifestyle operation so they can enjoy the benefits of their quality-of-life location. This iconic property within a stunning setting benefit from a high level of occupancy during the main season with steady activity during the low season. The business operates on a hostel basis only selling bed spaces to individuals, couples and families, and is available for exclusive use bookings for organised groups being popular with groups and other organisations such as schools, universities and Duke of Edinburgh award scheme. The spread of accommodation allows for a mix of client types from generalist tourists to those looking for more adventurous holidays. The hostel utilises a range of portal websites to advertise its offerings such as www.independenthostels.co.uk, www.visitscotland.com www.hostelworld.com and many others plus has its own effective website. The business has a fine reputation as reflected on TripAdvisor and other review sites. The businesses trading performance produces a sound adjusted net profit but there is scope to generate further income by adapting the latent potential within the hostel and by development within the grounds; both may need consents.
The hostel is operated and managed by the owners and no staff are employed in support of the business.
The main subjects comprise of 2 detached properties; Àite Cruinnichidh Hostel and the residence, plus ancillary buildings. The subjects date from1878 and are of mainly stone construction under a pitched tiled slated roof. The extension to the bunkhouse was constructed in 1999 and is of timber frame and timber clad with Spanish slate roof. The house is partly covered with modern boxed profile metal roofing. Both properties are set over 2 floors with modern facilities and double glazing.
ÀITE CRUINNICHIDH HOSTEL
The hostel can sleep 28 people and comprises the following accommodation:
Access is via a portico leading to a hallway with a kitchen and dining room set to the left-hand extremity. In keeping with much of the hostel, the kitchen / dining room is timber clad and is maintained to a high standard. The kitchen is well-equipped with modern appliances and utensils. The dining area is set to two large communal tables that meet the demands of the business. There is a cosy sitting room which is furnished with a table and free-standing chairs. There are 3 showers and WCs to the ground floor plus a sauna room. Within the lower level there is ample storage with two separate facilities. The letting accommodation is configured as follows:
Room A - Sleeps 4 (2 bunk beds)
Room B - Sleeps 4 (2 bunk beds)
Room C - Sleeps 4 (1 double and 1 bunk bed) with en-suite shower room and W.C. This room has a private access.
The upper floor is arranged within two separate parts. The first element is accessed as per the ground floor via stairs and there are 5 rooms set to accommodation:
Room 1 - Sleeps 2 (double and single bunk)
Room 2 - Sleeps 2 (2 singles)
Room 3 - Sleeps 4 (2 bunks)
Room 4 - Sleeps 4 (2 bunks)
Room 6 - Sleeps 6 (3 bunks)
A further facility can be accessed via a door from the sitting room or from a separate private entrance where stairs lead directly to the first floor within the new extension. This aspect of the building is currently utilised as a workshop / meeting room with a further general utility room plus a separate office. This flexible additional area of 3 rooms offers considerable space and could be easily converted, subject to permissions, to additional accommodation either for letting purposes or extended family.
The site is well sign-posted off the A86 and is easily located. The grounds extend to approximately 1 acre and the properties are situated in secluded location offering tremendous views. The amenity areas are mainly laid to grass and the parking area and driveway are laid to gravel. There is a large workshop and woodstore in the grounds and there may be scope to add additional accommodation units subject to consents.
The property benefits from mains electricity. LPG Gas is used for cooking in the house. The water is from a private water supply, coming directly from a mountain spring, and the drainage is to septic tanks. Hot water and central heating are via an oil-fired boiler. The main properties are fully double glazed.
The business has been operated under the current ownership for about 30 years and it is a desire for a change that brings this fabulous lifestyle business to the market.
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