The Vale Resort in south Wales is to invest £10m in a substantial redevelopment of the historic Hensol Castle and anticipates significant growth in conferences and events.
Extensive conference facilities are part of the first phase. The purpose-built Courtyard Hall (CGI pictured) will be able to host 320 delegates theatre-style and five other meetings rooms in the Castle itself will be available from April 2015.
Phase two of the project will include the introduction of 30 bedrooms and a high-end restaurant, to open by late 2016.
The Vale Resort derives a quarter of its revenues from conferences and events and Hensol Castle is located in its grounds and was purchased by the Leeke family, who own the Vale Resort, in 2003. Last year the Castle was reopened as a wedding venue, the first time it had been open to the public in nearly a decade.
The 400-year old Hensol Castle has been used as stage set for Sherlock, Doctor Who and Torchwood.
The 17th-century castle has original architecture, turrets and gothic towers and its restoration is being completed in association with the Vale of Glamorgan Council and CADW, the Welsh Government’s body responsible for preserving Welsh heritage.
The estate is situated six miles outside of Cardiff city centre and three minutes off junction 34 of the M4.
MD of Vale Resort Stephen Leeke, said: “This is a really exciting investment for the Vale Resort and another significant milestone for us as a business.
“The conference and event market is an important revenue stream for the Vale Resort, currently representing 25 per cent of our business, and we anticipate significant growth in this sector on the back of this project.
“The historic Hensol Castle gives us another string to our bow by providing an alternative option from our current contemporary offering at the Vale Resort. Event organisers can now choose from two very different venues that offer a combined total of 18 conference and meeting suites.”
Hensol Castle is also available for exclusive hire.
Until phase two of the development is complete, delegates who use Hensol Castle from April onwards as a conference venue can stay at the adjacent Vale Resort, which has a 143-bed luxury four-star hotel, two championship golf courses and Wales’ largest spa.
This year The Vale will host the National Tourism Awards, UK Coaching Summit 2015, Royal Mint Annual Awards Dinner, South Wales Chamber Welsh Business Awards, as well as the Wales Head Teachers conference. The Vale is also an official Rugby World Cup training venue.
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