Plans ‘address modern tourism expectations’

FINAL plans to demolish La Grande Mare Hotel and create a new country club have been unveiled.

The planning application was submitted this week for the Vazon site and would also see the removal of the health suite and golf driving range, to be replaced with a new range and 15 new tourism accommodation lodges.

It has been made by Westward Investments Ltd and follows on from the site being purchased by a company connected with billionaire Stephen Lansdown in 2019.

The hotel has been hit by the pandemic and a note on the hotel’s website stated that it had been decided to fast-track the redevelopment during the coronavirus disruption.

It is proposed that the country club building be built on the site of the current hotel, with a lawn and fountain in front. Parking would be created to the north and south of the lawn.

In a letter from agent James Le Gallez to the planners, he states the current property – with a 25-bedroom hotel, 10 self-catering units, two restaurants, health club and 18-hole golf course – was disjointed, deteriorating and no longer fit for purpose.

‘This is a very important development for Guernsey in addressing the site as a whole and with an appreciation of the wider benefits for tourism, business and as a commodity to Guernsey,’ he said in the application.

La Grande Mare Hotel & Golf course, Vazon. (Picture by Adrian Miller, 29274534)

‘This is a very important socio-economic factor.’

The current hotel can hold up to 140 people. It is proposed that new lodges be created for visitors instead. These would be placed in three groups of five.

The lodges would each hold up to six people, meaning there was bed space for up to 90 people.

‘The new tourism accommodation is about higher quality and addressing modern-day tourism expectation,’ Mr Le Gallez said.

The two-storey country club will contain a restaurant, golfers’ bar and spa.

The golf course will also be getting an upgrade, with plans to extend it to a European standard. It is proposed a PGA Academy be created, which could open next year.

The application itself is made up of 34 files and the fee for making the application was more than £27,000.

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