International hotelier Grace Leo is to take over and refurbish The Red Lion Hotel in Henley.

Mrs Leo and Singapore-based shipping entrepreneur Tim Hartnoll have acquired the hotel from MG Hotels which was represented by Knight Frank.

The 15th-century coaching inn has 35 bedrooms and restaurant and event space and has planning permission to add a few further bedrooms within the existing footprint.

Mrs Leo said: “After a prolonged search, Tim and I are delighted to have acquired The Red Lion Hotel.

“We see enormous potential for the property, especially in a post Covid-19 world in which we envisage that domestic tourism will become increasingly important, and changing working patterns mean that properties such as this have the potential to re-establish themselves as important community hubs.

“Now, we plan to embark on an extensive refurbishment process, drawing on my years spent in France and England, in order to create a chic and comfortable hotel, an excellent restaurant and a convivial meeting place.”

Henry Jackson, head of hotel agency and partner at Knight Frank, said: “We are experiencing an uptick in activity with increased interest in assets such as these from a range of domestic and international buyers, and are increasingly identifying overseas capital targeting the hotel leisure market, who are keen to look at staycation destinations.”

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