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Last Updated: Saturday, 17 May, 2003, 09:31 GMT 10:31 UK
Stein's hotel gamble
Rick Stein
Rick Stein: "It is a bit of a risk"
TV chef Rick Stein has spoken of the risk taking his fine cuisine to a resort dubbed "Britain's Ibiza".

Mr Stein is investing 1m in the Rocklands Hotel in Newquay after buying it for more than 500,000.

Mr Stein and his wife, Jill, already run several businesses in Padstow, including the Seafood Restaurant, which has built an international reputation for good food.

Now they intend to bring their skills to the 44-bedroomed hotel above Tolcarne Beach.

I think if he does for Newquay what he has done for Padstow, it'll be a great thing
Tony Townsend, Hotel Victoria
They have also requested planning permission for another restaurant on the beach below which they intend to connect to the hotel with a lift.

Mr Stein admitted he was sticking his neck out in the resort which is struggling to shed its downmarket image.

He said: "We are planning to spend a lot of money on the hotel and it is a bit of a risk because Newquay has been a bit under-invested in, but we think that it's all there.

"The fact that we have got the flights from Stansted and a lot of EU money going in, along with the beaches and the surfing - there is a just a feeling that Newquay is lifting off the bottom."

Mr Stein added: "The great thing about the hotel is that it has a fantastic view, it is on the cliff-top.

"But we are also going to be opening a restaurant on the beach below which we plan to link with a lift, which we want to make a feature."

Regeneration project

Newquay has welcomed Mr Stein with open arms.

Tony Townsend of the Hotel Victoria, said: "I think if he does for Newquay what he has done for Padstow, it'll be a great thing."

Mr Stein will be in line for a share of a 3.7m regeneration project - including 1.3m of EU cash - which was launched in February to help Newquay hotels cater for upmarket tourists.

Existing developments such as the Extreme Academy at Watergate Bay are also helping Newquay's quest for a better class of visitor.

Other developments scheduled for Newquay include a 1.8m international surf centre at Fistral Beach and an artificial surf reef off Tolcarne Beach, expected to cost about 5m.

Newquay heads upmarket
14 Feb 03  |  England


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