29 January 2024
Wanted. New owner for hotel in idyllic location on the Isle of Mull. Must like aeroplanes and Scotland.
It’s very simple really. Over the past 20 years, the current owners of Glenforsa Hotel, Brendan and Allison Walsh, have created one of the UK’s most appreciated hotels adjacent to a much-loved grass airfield on the Isle of Mull on the west coast of Scotland.
And there’s a very special incentive on offer as well. A free Boeing Stearman biplane to the right buyer, i.e. someone who loves aviation. And right next door to the hotel is the perfect place to fly it from, Glenforsa Airfield (airfield not included in the hotel sale).
“The hotel is a good business given that the price is based on six months turnover, because that’s all we do,” Brendan Walsh told FLYER. “We just do the six or seven months summer season. So financially, it’s a really good business.
“And we can spice it up a bit by offering a free Stearman. We definitely want to make sure it goes to the right person who’s going to keep it as an aviation destination.”
Brendan, now aged 77, maybe giving up the hotel but intends to keep running the airfield. “I plan to keep it going for the foreseeable future anyway, because the thought of retiring doesn’t really appeal to me. I’ve always got to have something to do.”
Brendan first came across Glenforsa when finishing off his private pilot’s licence at Highland Aero Club in Inverness. His instructor told him to ‘fly down Loch Ness, turn right. On your left, you’ll see a nice, grass airstrip. don’t land on it and come back and tell me all about it’.
Years later, after the Intrepid Aviation business he ran at North Weald Airfield for Pink Floyd guitarist (and PPL) David Gilmour closed, Brendan flew up again to Glenforsa and this time landed.
“I couldn’t physically walk to the hotel from the airfield because it was overgrown. When I finally got in the bar, ordered a pint of beer, and the guy handed it to me, I got it halfway to my face and I said, ‘do you want to sell this place?’ And he said, ‘Yeah’, and that was it. That was 20 years ago.
“Aircraft movements at that time, when the council was running it, were about 190 a year. Last year, it was 980 or something like that. It’s a great base for people to explore Scotland.
“Flying around Scotland, this is actually what I thought flying would be all about. And I’ve been trying to spread that word. People fly up from down south and they get past Carlisle, the radio goes silent and they go ‘actually, this is why I took up flying’.”
So what would the aviation-mad buyer be taking on? Glenforsa Hotel is set in 7.83 acres of woodland with great potential for development, included within the sale, and offers 13 en suite rooms with fantastic views.
There are also two Scandinavian-style cabins for families and groups, and a bar, restaurant and beer garden with uninterrupted sea views. The property also features a two bedroom owners chalet with a lounge, bathroom and kitchen.
It’s on the market at offers over £1.5m for the freehold with agents Christie & Co. Click here for full details.