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First Chapter Hotel, The Montpellier Chapter, Opens in Cheltenham,
with Rates from £125 Per Night

HONG KONG – (January 19, 2011) – Swire Hotels has introduced Chapter Hotels, a new British hotel brand that builds on the recent success of the company’s launch of the “House” and “EAST” brands with the opening of The Opposite House in Beijing, and The Upper House and EAST in Hong Kong.

Chapter Hotels, inspired by their locations in the heart of great British towns and cities, will offer superb quality and excellent value in historic structures with contemporary designs that reflect the skill and passion of the architects, artists and artisans who collaborated in their creation. The first hotel from the new brand, The Montpellier Chapter, opened in late November in the Regency town of Cheltenham, with rates from £125 per night. A second Chapter Hotel will open in Exeter in 2012.

“In creating Chapter Hotels, we have been fortunate to work with a truly great team who share our passion for Britain and the rich history and culture of its regions, and our belief that quality and value are not mutually exclusive,” said Swire Hotels Managing Director Brian Williams.  “It has been uplifting and also humbling to see cutting-edge architects like Ken Shuttleworth and culinary geniuses like Chef Consultant Simon Hopkinson working alongside leading curators and local craftsmen toward a common goal. We truly hope that our guests feel the energy and genuine enthusiasm that has gone into the creation of what we believe to be unique hotels.”

Chapter Hotels Reflect Simplicity, Honesty, Quality, Local Pride
Guests at Chapter Hotels can expect to experience:
  • Historic buildings, carefully restored and artfully expanded by leading architects
  • Subtle contemporary interiors of the finest materials
  • Extraordinarily comfortable beds and superb linens
  • Beautifully crafted spas
  • Intimate bars and restaurants featuring daily menus of simply prepared British classics and carefully chosen wine lists
  • Service that is relaxed, stylish and highly personal
The Montpellier Chapter, Cheltenham, England
The first-to-open property from Chapter Hotels is an inviting showcase for the new brand’s standards, offering great quality and high-value accommodations with striking individuality characterized by commitment to design, service, art, technology and memorable dining experiences. The Montpellier Chapter features 61 rooms, including a penthouse with private roof terrace and other rooms with balconies or sun porches; a lofty restaurant with open kitchen, drawing room, library, bar and snug, two private dining rooms with wine cellars, a garden room, conservatory and new central courtyard. A Spa will open in 2011.

The property is set in a landmark building (formerly the Kandinsky Hotel, acquired by Swire Hotels in 2006) in the chic Montpellier area of Cheltenham, a noted spa town in Gloucestershire on the edge of the Cotswolds that is famous for its stunning array of Regency architecture constructed during the reign of King George IV. The town is also home to the flagship event in British steeplechase horse racing, the Gold Cup, that takes place during the Cheltenham Festival held every March, as well as numerous music and cultural events. 

James Partridge is the hotel’s General Manager, who joined The Montpellier Chapter from the same position with Gordon Ramsay Holdings’ York & Albany hotel and restaurant in London. Previously, Partridge spent 15 years at the Maybourne Hotel Group (previously The Savoy).

The Montpellier Chapter was developed under the direction of Brian Williams in his role as Managing Director of Chapter Hotels. Williams worked with a dynamic team that included MAKE, the architecture firm of Ken Shuttleworth, and Consultant Chef Simon Hopkinson, the founding chef of London’s Bibendum restaurant. Together, the team preserved the building’s original Victorian character while transforming the interiors and adding both a new contemporary wing in the shape of a crescent and an inner courtyard surrounded by a veil of clear and claret-colored glass that shelters a stately dogwood tree. The painstakingly restored conservatory showcases a chandelier by glass artist Isabel Hamm.

Contemporary and classic elements shape the interiors in soft tones with an occasional burst of color. The 16 modern crescent rooms appear hewn from stone, with an open plan bathroom and oak hardwood floors. The traditional villa bedrooms feature muted slate tones, with lush carpets, high ceilings and carefully restored original details. Custom furnishings throughout the hotel include chairs commissioned for each room by designer Matthew Hilton.

Technology amenities include paperless check-in, complimentary WiFi and Internet connections, complimentary mini bar and in-room 3G iPod touches. Restaurant wine lists are displayed on iPads.

The hotel’s art collection was curated by Central St. Martin’s College of Art and Design and features 160 works by leading and contemporary artists and art students, including paintings, photographs, prints and sculptures. Among the works are specific pieces created by students for each of the 61 guestrooms and suites. Establishing an artful mood on arrival is the one-of-a-kind oak reception desk sculpted by Alison Crowther.

The 74-seat Restaurant, directed by Consultant Chef Simon Hopkinson and Head Chef Tom Rains, features seasonal menus of classic dishes and British favorites, many prepared in the open hearth oven in the open kitchen. Diners may opt to enjoy their selections in the restaurant and conservatory, on the terrace or in the bar.

For more information or to reserve, please visit

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About Chapter Hotels
Swire Hotels has launched a new brand, Chapter Hotels, which will operate superb quality, excellent value contemporary hotels, each drawing inspiration from their location in the heart of great British towns and cities.  Set in period buildings, each Hotel will be rooted in their location and reflective of the individual skills and passions of the architects, artists and artisans who have collaborated in their creation. The Montpellier Chapter in Cheltenham, which opened November 29, 2010, is the first Chapter Hotel. The second Chapter Hotel will open in Exeter in 2012.
About Swire Hotels
Swire Hotels has been created to manage intriguing urban hotels in Hong Kong, Mainland China and the United Kingdom, providing a luxury experience for travelers who seek individuality, style and personalized service. The award winning hotels, The Opposite House, Beijing, and The Upper House, Hong Kong, opened in 2008 and 2009 respectively. A 345-room lifestyle business hotel called EAST opened in Hong Kong’s Island East in January 2010.
About Make
Make is a studio of architects and designers committed to designing buildings, spaces and places which are as striking and innovative as they are socially, economically and environmentally responsible. Founded by Ken Shuttleworth in January 2004, the practice has already established itself as one of the UK’s foremost architectural firms and currently employs more than 100 people. Current projects range in scale from private houses, residential towers and office developments to hospitals and urban master planned communities.