Restoration of Craig y Nos Castle 2000-2020
Brecon Beacons Hotels, funding the restoration - initially we had a very profitable cleaning agency franchise (we were the franchisor, with 96 branches nationally) and this provided around £3m of initial funding. Sadly the cleaning agency business tailed off due to increased competition via the internet, so continuing restoration work is now much slower, funded by a large and growing wedding business.
Brecon Beacons Hotels Blue Bar cellar bar refurbishment - this room is still not completed as we got distracted on to other things. We are intending to resume work in 2020/2021, some 14 years after we 'paused'.
Brecon Beacons Hotels the Conservatory at Craig y Nos Castle - this was a major project but invaluable as the room became our Wedding Banqueting room and without it we would not have the wedding business.
Brecon Beacons Hotels en-suite rooms at Craig y Nos Castle - we started with great gusto on the en-suites, employing sub-contractors, but as funds ran a bit short, we resolved to add rooms as and when we could, using our own directly employed builders. New en-suites are currently being added at the rate of one every couple of years, inbetween other work.
Brecon Beacons Hotel exterior walls and gutter work at Craig y Nos Castle - ongoing. We still have some major repointing and roofwork to do.
Brecon Beacons Hotel new floor joists at Craig y Nos Castle - we found a lot of the floors were just hanging in the air, long since rotten. A vast amount of work relaying all the floors has taken place.
Brecon Beacons Hotels Nicolini Lounge by Reception at Craig y Nos Castle - what was intended as a quick lick of paint turned into a 1 year restoration project when we discovered the ceiling was about to collapse.
Brecon Beacons Hotel roof repair work at Craig y Nos Castle - we spent a fortune just repairing the gulleys, all new lead gullies everywhere.
Brecon Beacons Hotels sports room and hot tub at Craig y Nos Castle - this was an accident. I bought a hot tub in 2004 and had nowhere to put it. £200,000 or so later we had a new sports room built to house it (2005-2006). We then had to do something about the ugly Conservatory next door, which was derelict and an eyesore from the Sports Room windows. So we restored that in 2007-8. A £10,000 Hot Tub led to almost a £400k restoration project on rooms we might not otherwise have touched in years.
Future Plans as in 2019 included
1. Get Room 17 En-Suite completed by end March 2020. Still outstanding as of 2021 due to COVID delays.
2. Once AB17 completed, resume work on the old 'Blue Bar' Cellar restaurant. This was started in around 2005, but stopped as we spent too long digging out the hole in the floor, to increase ceiling height. It had by 2006 become clear our main business was going to be weddings, rather than Hotel and B&B, hence we restored the Conservatory in 2007 to offer a decent Wedding Banqueting room.
For some years though we have needed a separate evening restaurant for guests staying at the castle who are not part of the wedding. The new Blue Bar Cellar Restaurant if we ever fniish it will provide both evening meals to regular B&B guests and non-wedding guests and operate as a daytime cafe for local trade. This will mean the room will be as it used to be in 2004, when it was a separate bar and dining area away from the big functions.
3. The theatre loos will be completely overhauled at the same time, as they are next to the Blue Bar. It is our intention to expand the Blue Bar into the area currently occupied by part of the Gents Loos, and to make a more efficient smaller loo area within the existing cellar space. The current theatre loos are a throwback to the 1970's and overdue a revamp.