OnTrade Scotland Magazine - April Edition 2021

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LET’S GET READY Magazine Magazine April 2021

Official Partner

The double agents. Distilled in secret. Enjoyed in private.



So April is here already and as we all start to plan in a more positive way to get our industry and businesses back to as close to normal as possible from the 26th of the month doors for many can open all be it outside but it is open. In this edition of OnTrade Scotland, we have spoken with Lisa Wishart of Lisini Group & Craig Munro GM of The Hilton DoubleTree Glasgow as we look to share best practise of what other owners and venues are doing to deal with the issue they have faced and push forward in a positive way to hopefully inspire others and to show that everyone has had challenges in their own way but by working together, seeking help and advice and support we will all come through it. I believe like many others across the industry that we have spoken to and engaged with that as an industry we have an opportunity to change, and change for the better. Customers have consumed most off trade offering that the grateful supermarkets have been able to supply, they have made their own cocktail, poured their own measures and made their own food. They are not going to want the same experience when they visit a venue they are going to look for an experience, a warm welcome, friendly service and value for money. Now don’t get that confused with “cheap” they are very different things. As a customer myself the things I would value are things like friendly approachable staff (regardless of how busy they may be) comfortable welcoming surroundings, food and beverage solutions that offer something different that is well made and value for money (not an expresso martini made with cutting corners on the ingredients for example). We all love our industry and we all love what we do let us make the industry even better and give us all the experience we would want ourselves. As always stay strong, stay safe and let us make April the start of a better new normal for everyone.

Justin Wingate Director at TopGunMedia For press enquires or advertising opportunists please call or email: Email: info@topgunmedia.co.uk Telephone: 0141 556 4111


The Hospitality industry responds to the reopening announcement


Lisini Pub Company Angels of Inspiration


Creating a Buzz with Hilton Doubletree


Rogano unveils latest mural



Leading sector technology provider Access Hospitality, a division of The Access Group, has launched a software package specifically created for independent operators running between one and three hospitality sites. Access Juice is a comprehensive solution that provides affordable, proven technology for smaller operations that can be upgraded as a business develops. For operators looking to open a new pub, bar or restaurant or when replacing several outdated systems, the Access Juice solution will maximise efficiency gains. Explaining the development of Access Juice, Henry Seddon, Managing Director of Access Hospitality said; “At the start of last year Access Hospitality commissioned a survey to understand the hopes and aspirations of hospitality operators and how technology might help them achieve their goals. More than a third of those running fewer than five sites identified that the tools and technology they would use to build customer loyalty included ease of booking (37.8%), enhanced employee engagement (36.5%) and cashless payment options (36.3%).

“With this insight added to the greater pressures on small businesses caused by lockdown and trading restrictions, the need to adopt effective and responsive tech has increased even further. It is important that Access Hospitality’s products are available to everyone in a format that is appropriate to their business and meets their needs, particularly by providing the level of detail necessary to operate efficiently and optimise revenue. Access Juice is our response for operators of a single venue or a handful of sites, who want to improve their agility to increase customer and staff engagement, reduce manual processes and receive real time, accurate reporting.” “At an uncertain time when everyone is preparing to face real operational pressures as they prepare to reopen, the launch of Access Juice gives operators of three or fewer sites the opportunity to align with a market leading provider to futureproof their business through technology” added Henry Seddon. “Giving them, a perfect combination of the tools they need to manage reservations, transactions and stock, schedules and absenteeism at an affordable budget equips them for what will, undoubtedly, be another turbulent few months. Access Hospitality will continue to listen to, and work with, hospitality operators as technology solutions become ever more accepted and common in our society.” For more information contact 0845 345 3300 or visit https://www.theaccessgroup.com/hospitality/software/ small-hospitality-operations-platform/

HEINEKEN HAS COMMISSIONED A PUB PERCEPTION SURVEY To better understand operators and therefore provide the right support that they need, HEINEKEN has commissioned research into the on-trade’s biggest concerns, challenges and expectations ahead of reopening. This new insight – provided by real operators managing wet-led and food-led venues across the UK – will assist HEINEKEN in delivering relevant support at the right time to give on-trade businesses every chance of success in 2021. Commissioned in December 20201, HEINEKEN’s research revealed that the three main challenges facing operators are attracting new customers (20%), retaining current customers (18%) and managing costs (17%). Recruitment and retention of staff was also a key concern for food-led operators. Driven by these research results and feedback from HEINEKEN’s own customers and its Star Pubs & Bars, HEINEKEN created the Benefits Bar. HEINEKEN has built and gathered all the benefits of simply

working together into this virtual local, serving up the products, services and ideas operators need to help them run a profitable pub business. Offering a flavour of the vast pub expertise and insight available to its customers, HEINEKEN has shared top-line advice for future proofing your business, in line with the key concerns outlined in the research.

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Brand News HAIG CLUB LAUNCH RELEASE A FRUITY NEW VARIANT Haig Club Mediterranean Orange will be available from mid-April 2021 across the UK. The new expression aims to tap into the growing early evening and aperitivo occasions, and provide an ‘accessible option’ for both whisky fans and nonwhisky drinkers. Violeta Andreeva, whisky marketing director, Diageo, said: “We see this as a huge opportunity to recruit a new generation of drinkers as more and more consumers are choosing flavours and sweeter drinks.” The bottling is said to offer ‘fresh and juicy’ marmalade orange flavours, infused with orange blossom extract and Haig Club’s signature Scotch whisky notes. David Beckham, Haig Club brand partner, said: “Myself and the Haig Club team are continually looking at ways to engage and adopt new consumers to the brand.

SCHWEPPES GEARS UP FOR THE GREAT BRITISH SUMMER WITH NEW CAMPAIGN Schweppes has launched two new TV adverts as part of its multi-millionpound campaign – ‘Schweppes, We’ve Got The Tonic, You’ve Got the Spirit’. Airing from 8th March, the humorous adverts are built around hotly-anticipated summer occasions. Continued advertising investment is designed to keep the fastest-growing major mixer brand in GB front of mind with consumers – in retail, and ultimately, in hospitality too as it reopens. Coca-Cola European Partners has announced the return of the ‘Schweppes, We’ve Got The Tonic, You’ve Got The Spirit’ TV campaign with the launch of two new adverts. Airing from 8th March, the two 10-second adverts are humorous and light-hearted, aiming to celebrate and encourage Brits’ thirst for positivity in the run-up to summer. The first advert has the unpredictable British weather at its heart, and depicts a family trying to enjoy a BBQ in the rain, while the other focuses on a couple dealing with amusing complications while trying to enjoy a picnic. Both adverts feature the Schweppes Classic and Schweppes Signature Collection ranges. Schweppes outperformed the mixers sector in retail with 32.7% value growth last year, fueled by consumers’ efforts to recreate the pub, bar and restaurant experience at home.

“Developing Haig Club Mediterranean Orange has been in the works for some time now and I’ve enjoyed helping select the final liquid. “The orange perfectly complements the signature Scotch notes of Haig Club and it’s a great long drink for summer.”

SCOTTISH GIN PRODUCER RAISES ITS SPIRITS IN FRANCE A leading Scottish gin producer has partnered with French-based spirit importer, Bogdan & Bertrand Company (BBC) Spirits, to drive growth in Europe despite the challenges of Brexit and the Covid-19 pandemic. McQueen Gin, based in Callander, Scotland, has exported gins worldwide since its beginnings in 2016 but this will be the first time its core product range will be available to purchase in France. The Perthshire-based company is one of the first British businesses BBC Spirits has added to its portfolio and it is hoped the partnership will help build trade relations in Europe post-Brexit. The deal also comes at a welcome time for both brands following the devastating effect of the Covid-19 pandemic on the wider hospitality industry. McQueen product will be available on the shelves of many French independent stores from March, with hopes of expanding to larger ecommerce sites.


Scotland's hospitality industry responds to First Minister's reopening announcement Some of the biggest names in Scotland’s hospitality industry have responded to the First Minister’s reopening announcement today (Tuesday 16th March 2021), confirming indicative dates for the easing of lockdown restrictions in Scotland with an end to the ‘Stay at Home’ rule on April 2nd and hospitality set to start reopening from April 26th. James Thomson, owner of Prestonfield House Hotel and The Witchery, said: “Today’s announcement by the First Minister has provided us with a much needed route out of lockdown and will now allow us to start to plan for reopening our doors at Prestonfield and The Witchery on 26th April and to rebuild our businesses and the economy. We are very much looking forward to popping a few corks on 26th April, no matter the weather and to welcoming everyone back again.”

Nic Wood, Owner of Edinburgh-based Signature Group, Scotland’s leading pub, bar and restaurant collection, said: “We’re grateful that the First Minister has provided a clear, concise reopening schedule and we look forward to 26th April to open our doors and serve customers outside, initially. This is much needed announcement as businesses must plan, invest, retrain, educate and prepare to reopen in 2021 after a devastating 2nd wave of Coronavirus. For most of the central belt, we have not served alcohol since 8th October 2020 and whilst we won’t be popping champagne corks, to enable people to enjoy a cocktail with a main meal is progress and demonstrates a degree of trust from the First Minister in the behaviours of the general public and operators. “Whilst there has never been any evidence to suggest hospitality spread the virus, and the restrictions to trade & guidance to operate make transmission unlikely, we are encouraged that the Scottish Government is listening and beginning to understand the complexities of our sector. No one is underestimating the effects of the pandemic and public health is right to be at the forefront of all minds but we need to consider the economic implications and find the right balance. Jobs must be protected and this news will come as relief the 250000 employed in the Scottish hospitality industry. Reopening will be steady and practical and we need customers and patrons to come out, when they feel the time is right and support their bars & restaurants.” Signature Group operates McLarens on the Corner in Morningside; Cold Town House in the Grassmarket; The Huxley on Rutland Street; Copper Blossom on Gorge Street; Badger & Co on Castle Street, and a number of other quality food and drink venues across the capital and the rest of Scotland. 6 ontradescotland.co.uk

“We’re delighted to be finally getting an indicative date for the reopening of hospitality in the North Highlands, which we can all support and start planning towards. We can’t wait to welcome visitors back to The Storehouse and the wider North Coast 500 as soon as it’s safe to travel.”

Murray Lamont, proud owner of Mackays Hotel in Wick, Caithness and the North Coast 500, said:

“This is the news we have been waiting to hear and thank the First Minister for listening to us. Hospitality and Tourism are the foundation of the northern economy and probably the worst affected industry by Covid. “The industry understands and respects the need to be responsible and adhere to rules for everybody’s safety and wellbeing. The dates given of reducing the mainland from level 4 to level 3 is a great start as is the lifting of travel restrictions. We need to know the detail of the modified levels so as we know how exactly hospitality will operate. “The hospitality industry is desperately eager to demonstrate the warm highland welcome visitors are used to. We must be able to provide the best the Highlands has to offer in food and drink offerings. “We can now have a clear plan, so as we structure the opening of our business, at the moment many wholesalers and suppliers in the supply chain have furloughed their staff and need time to get people back in place. The simple things like bread milk cheese and cream, supplies have been cut due to lack of demand from hotels. Breweries will need at least four weeks to get supplies back on track and beer into our cellars. “Many well-established businesses are on the edge and some business owners are facing collapse. The announcement of further help with 100 per cent rates relief for the year with restart grants will help greatly and reduce the risk ahead. People now have the opportunity to book trips around the North Coast 500 with confidence knowing that attractions can open and Hospitality business’ will look after them.”

Tanja Lister, owner of the Kylesku Hotel in Sutherland on the North Coast 500, said: “We very much welcome the indicative timelines as set out by the First Minister this afternoon. After a bruising year, we’re eagerly awaiting to reopen our doors once more and welcome back our much-missed guests. “Whilst it has inevitably been, and continues to be, a challenging time, the messages of support and the pent up demand have carried us through this. The last year has underlined the key role that hospitality and tourism plays as part of our way of life and also wellbeing. We will be ready with that famous Highland welcome just as soon as restrictions lift.”

Tom Campbell, Executive Chair of North Coast 500 Ltd, said: “It is really encouraging to see positive steps in the reopening of the hospitality and tourism sectors and while there is still caution, businesses and communities now have the ability to plan for a relaxation in the restrictions. While we have consistently said that everyone needs to follow the Government guidelines, it can be said now with a more positive approach and belief that the reopening of these local businesses, that are vital to the Highlands economy, is in sight.”

Stefano Pieraccini, Director of The Broughton on Broughton Street, said:

“I think it’s largely positive news that we’ve finally got an indicative reopening date to work towards, but an earlier announcement in line with England would have given the industry a better chance to prepare. “Those businesses with outside space are clearly going to get a head start to serve alcohol with food, but that isn’t going to work for very businesses model. We now need to make some quick decisions about whether or not it’s viable for us to deliver an alfresco service to our St Andrews customers in the short term.”


Content supplied by Jon Perkins Taste Communications

Quintin Stevens, owner of the Storehouse at Dingwall on the North Coast 500, said:

An AwArd winning gift

Two gold medals awarded by The Spirits Business for the product and its packaging in 2020 validates the brands quality and sustainability. We see the on-trade as a significant sampling & showcase opportunity for Magnum. Especially important is for us to understand the needs of the on-trade in order build advocacy which is crucial for any brand. We believe that the trade are looking for new and innovative alternatives within all categories and want to support authentic Scottish products. Bar staff can significantly influence consumer trends and we are keen to develop relationships and provide the right support to help communicate our brand values. Assisting our trade customers through this difficult period is key. We therefore can provide a menu of support which includes enhanced margins, extended credit and point of sale materials.

Class in a Glass Hemisphere Brands Ltd are the global agents for Magnum scotch malt whisky cream liqueur crafted and bottled in Edinburgh. Our business is built from 25 years experience in international retail with FTSE 30 FMCG multi-nationals. We combine route to market knowledge and insight with a grip on how to apply trade marketing and sales force management tools that have ensured a progressive presence for our brand in the UK, Canada and S.A, our core markets.

We speak to Lee Schofield owner of Hemisphere Brands Ltd on what makes Magnum so unique, the history as well as the plans to engage the hospitality sector. Lee told us: “The category is known for traditional packaging and positioning, dominated by a single brand and we were convinced there was an opportunity for a fresh entrant able to inspire interest. Our aim was to create a premium product with provenance and authenticity. Magnum is a single malt scotch whisky cream liqueur. Our single malt is from Speyside and we add no additional spirits unlike most cream liqueurs. Our packaging sustainability ethos was at the heart of the brands creation. The stainless steel flask is designed to keep the liquid chilled at the optimum temperature without the need for ice. It is both recyclable and reusable.

Our goal is to be the preferred choice of discerning cream liqueur consumers and trade customers. In order to achieve this, we need to build a significant presence in markets with three key focuses: • a sizeable ‘cream’ category • evidence of growth in premium segments across all categories • a well developed scotch whisky category. We will do this by investing in communicating the brands product, provenance and packaging credentials. We want every bar in Scotland to choose Magnum as its preferred cream liqueur. Ours is the only dedicated cream bottling facility in Scotland therefore we have production agility, capability and capacity. We see opportunities outside the scotch/cream combination so watch this space! In Canada where Magnum has extensive and established distribution in the government run liquor stores in the key provinces of Ontario and Quebec (available in c.400 stores through 2020), these outlets remained open throughout lockdown, consumers made fewer shopping trips and stocked up. As a result, our sales in Canada (our largest market) were 20% up on 2019. In addition, we were able to sign-up a new agent in the Eastern provinces and secured a listing with the NSLC (Nova Scotia Liquor Corporation) which should add 25% to our Canadian volume. Despite the alcohol prohibition lockdown in South Africa, Magnum launched in November 2020. Three subsequent orders reflects the better than expected demand for the brand. The UK has been our nightmare! The loss of our core domestic travel retail volume and high street closures has negatively impacted sales. Like most other brands we moved online and we have seen sales through that channel more than quadruple over the year. Overall, we are missing our trips to two of our favourite countries but the brand story has been positive in these markets. Scotland should deliver for us and that will be our focus for the remainder of 2021.

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Magnum - Single malt scotch whisky cream liqueur crafted and bottled in Scotland. Contained in a stainless-steel, quick-chill recyclable and reusable flask.

Angels of Inspiration Lisini Pub Company has firmly established itself as one of the most successful, independent, family run hospitality businesses in Scotland. With almost 50 years’ experience and a name synonymous with quality, flawless service, experience and a guaranteed warm welcome. With a portfolio of hotels, bars and restaurants in Lanarkshire which have become hugely popular, famous destination venues in the area. Angels Hotel in Uddingston, Dalziel Park Hotel in Motherwell, The

Parkville Hotel in Blantyre and The Castle Rooms in Uddingston; each venue has their own unique personality, something different to offer but all with that distinct stamp of Lisini excellence. As they say at Lisini Pub Company – you are a stranger but once. The varity of venues in the group and their positioning in the local communities gives the group the opportunity to provide us with a unique insight to the challenges experianced over the last 12 months but also as one of the founding members of the inspirational Scottish Hospitality Group who have continued to champion the rights of venues

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and be a vocal lead in the campaigning for equality and fairness across the hospitality sector from Government & local authority during the pandemic. We spoke to Lisa Wishart Managing Director of Lisini Pub Company on the challenges, why she felt it important to get together with the other 9 founding companies to form the Scottish Hospitality Group and much more. What you would like to see from government and councils to help move forward in a better way for venues like yourself? Ongoing support is crucial. There is a cliff edge about to happen. The majority of the Industry cannot trade from 26th April, and those that can, will not do viably. The Government should have contributed towards the NI & Pension of staff on Furlough whilst businesses were legally forced to cease trading. 13

The costs associated with retaining so many staff over such a prolonged period of time, has added further debt liabilities to vulnerable businesses. Continuation of the Business Rates Holiday is welcome, but 12 months of ongoing fixed costs, rent arrears & VAT liabilities will prove too much for the majority. What has the support and engagement of your suppliers been like over this time? Relationships will be key to future success. Whether that relationship has been between the customer and the venue, the Landlord & the Tenants or Hospitality and its suppliers, route to markets and brand owners. Route to Market Suppliers, whether, food or drink or other are the lifeblood of our Industry, and they have not been supported adequately. We have made it a priority to ensure they are paid for the services and goods provided. The majority of our suppliers have worked in tandem with our finance

team that ensure longevity of the relationship. I have been particularly impressed with our butchers, James Campbell & Dunn’s Food & Drinks- long term relationships that will continue. I am particularly disappointed with Utility companies, who have not offered payment plans, or deferred rates, despite being funded by the Government to do so. Indeed, fixed costs, particularly SaaS ie ISP or software that would be required when operational such as buying (Procure Wizard), event booking software, table reservations to name but a few that literally stopped during the enforced period of shutdown, showed little if any empathy to the predicament and became on the whole very short term. Their approach to our hospitality business has not gone unnoticed when it either comes to reknewal or loyalty. What are Lisini’s plans moving forward to re open the venues? First and foremost, the major impetus is on staff and venues - our staff have been wonderful

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Lisini Management Team

Grant Hood

Lynda McGaw

throughout this period, but we know and understand their trepidation and pain on coming back after a prolonged period of absence. The start/ stop and restart has been unsettling, so we have developed a 3 week re training/ upskilling programme for all our staff. We have kept on top of maintenance during this period, thus we are lucky to have completed projects that had been on the back burner. Our in house gardening and maintenance team have a plan in place, daft as it sounds, but to ensure that the place is not only spic and span, it is adorned with fresh flowers and plants - Spring is definitely in the air at Lisini! Then we have our customers - there is no radical changes to drinks or menus, just slight tweaks, no massive price increases, just because we have suffered throughout this period. We want stability and re-assurance - we want people to come back, the community to pick up where they left off - in relaxed, comforting and risk assessed, increased hygiene measures. We want them home. What has been the biggest challenge you as a business have faced over this period and what new things have you learned? We have been an active part of the Scottish Hospitality Group and believe the positive input that that the group have demonstrated to the trade, in conjunction and with collaboration with other trade bodies, has increased our hospitality voice in Scotland. We are not unique in facing a myriad of issues - these have been well documented throughout such as the inability to plan for opening (with or without restrictions) which has led to

Nicky Hood

Siobhan Edwards

fluctuating staffing requirements and the continual cash flow projections for banking institutions, that seem to change on a month to month basis which has been a full time job in itself! The main challenge will be to open up efficiently, safely and in profit & repay the incurred debt that the last 13 months has given us. The fact that this 50 year old family business has increased the debt, simply to survive, is not an enviable position to be in and our hearts go out to those smaller independent businesses that quite frankly have not survived it. It is through no fault of their own regrettably. On a positive note, we have embraced technological advancements and we have cut the cloth on unnecessary expenditure - every spend has been forensically investigated and a business case raised for this. It has been a difficult journey to navigate, one in which we will be paying for for a good number of years. It would be naive to say that we are glad we have survived, because so many did not - plus, after the last 12 months, who know what is around the corner? Thank you to Lisa for her insightful and inspirational comments and for the support she has shown as part of the Scottish Hospitality Group to the whole industry. We hope buy tapping into the experience of business owners like Lisa each month that it can give everyone in the trade large or small something that can take into their own business and see that you are not alone.


We are continuing to celebrate the great work you as venues are doing during this challenging time to adapt and still supply great food and drink to your customers. We have received an overwhelming number of images and shares of the takeaway offering you have and we have loved sharing them with your potential customers through our social channels. KEEP THEM COMING.

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While times remain challenging for everyone, and not least the licensed and hospitality trade, there is light at the end of the tunnel. First Minister announcements have confirmed proposed dates for end April to allow reopening of premises inside and outside, both to a limited degree, with alcohol able to be sold outside. A further reopening with longer hours and more ability to serve alcohol is proposed for May and by the time you read this we may have significantly more detail and how that will look.

Look out for four articles from Jo Millar over the next month on the OnTrade Scotland website looking at the background to the Bill and explaining what it means in brief, considering the positives, looking at the negatives, and a final article pulling together when it will come in to force and what has to be done as a result of the Bill’s approval. Looking forward, as we have being doing in our recent articles, we want to focus now on how your business is positioned to reopen and what we can do to help with that.

Jo Millar – Head of Licensing jmillar@gilsongray.co.uk | 0141 370 8116

The Tied Pubs (Scotland) Bill was approved by Parliament and there is much discussion about this. Most see it as a positive although there are some who warn it may not be everything we hope for.

Operators previously considered business structure to be complex and the option of reviewing it as an unnecessary cost. That is not the case. Since the pandemic, and with issues we have never experienced before such as lockdown, physical distancing and a county wide furlough scheme, many of our clients have been asking us about the structure of their business and whether it could be better. Business structure and operation can be flexible and useful. It does not have to be rigid and unwieldy. Inevitably the pandemic has resulted in the loss of many licensed trade businesses, but for those who are looking

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forward, although perhaps with concerns and some trepidation, there are options. Operators face challenges such as lower footfall, increased outgoings, repayments for Bounce Back and CBIL’s loans, and opening costs. For those who are concerned about cash flow and being able to meet those payments, there are alternatives to dissolution of a company or insolvency of a business. There are a number of ways to assist a business to allow it to trade through, and out of, difficulties. The present issues affect everyone in some way, not just in Scotland but the UK and globally. Lenders and suppliers, Councils and HMRC alike have some understanding of the issue faced by the licensed trade and there are already some mechanisms in place to defer VAT, rates and similar. There are simple things which can be done to help businesses reopen on the most positive

and financially sound footing. These include: improving cash flow; structuring parts of the business differently; closing a trading entity or part of the business to alleviate debts. All of this may sound both expensive and time consuming but it does not have to be. Craig Darling and Jo Millar from our restructuring and licensing departments are offering a free 20 minute business review where they will discuss with you various aspects of your operation including reducing debt, ways to reconfigure your business and how we can assist with your reopening. We anticipate that, by the end of April, we will be able to have a drink with each other, even if that is just a cup of coffee inside! We would love to meet you face to face. We are here to help and delighted to answer your questions and queries.

The right advice has never been more important. We’re honoured to have been chosen as the exclusive partner of OnTrade Magazine Scotland. As one of Scotland’s full-service law firms we’re able to offer specialist legal, property and financial services. We’re here to help in a time when support and clarity are needed most – offering valuable advice and insight on everything from licensing, business financing, employment and real estate. Different people. Different approach. Different results. To find out more please call Jo Millar on 0141 370 8116 or email jmillar@gilsongray.co.uk




The King. Born and Bred. E S TA B L I S H I N G T H E K I N G I N U K

King of Cotton was established in the UK during April 1995,

Momentum gathered, and in 2003 the King of Cotton website

having been originally founded in the town of Gallarate,

was launched, making

Northern Italy in 1880 as ‘Re di Cotone’,

a wide range of quality

the Italian for 'King of Cotton’.

products available to all who desired

At that time, Re di Cotone was owned

difficult to find,

and run by Alceste Pasta. When Alceste


retired one of his closest partners, Signore

products, at

Pastorelli, took over ownership of Re di Cotone. The Pastorelli

corporate prices.

family run the Italian business to this day and continue to supply outstanding cotton products throughout Italy to both retail and

King of Cotton is now the 'go to' supplier for corporations and

major commercial companies.

households throughout Europe. There are branches in London, Paris, Brussels, Nice and Marbella. With 8 outlets across 5

It was in 1995 that Hector James Gauld,

countries, King of Cotton’s finest cotton products can be found

asked his brother in law, Paolo Pastorelli for

extensively across the continent both online and in store.

permission to use the King of Cotton brand in the United Kingdom with the aim of

By choosing King of Cotton, you can be sure that you’re in the

suppling Hotels with premium products, principally from Italy

best place for all your bedroom and bathroom requirements.

but also sourced from around the world.

Behind the name lies a legacy and heritage that goes back to Gallarate, in the foothills of the Italian Alps 140 years ago.

So began UK’s very own 'King of Cotton’. Over the years King of Cotton developed a reputation for providing high quality cotton

We pride ourselves in having the highest industry standards

products, at fair prices with a high level

certificate ISO 9001 for our

of service.

continuous efforts to improve on customer service

Demand grew across the Hotel sector

and company efficiency.

and with guests making enquiries as to the source of the bathrobes and

It is our mission to supply

towels in their rooms, hotels began

customers with the highest

making these and other King of Cotton

level of service along with

branded items available for sale.

the highest possible quality of

The King of Cotton retail experience

goods, all sourced from highly

was born.

vetted, sustainable suppliers.

Turning a hotel room into a master bedroom. We’ve always had an extensive range of high quality bedlinen for the Hotel trade. The Hotel Superior Egyptian 400 thread sateen bedlinen is widely used by five-star hotels due to its easy-care finish. It’s also ideal for heavy and frequent laundering. Other popular linen includes the Hotel Classic Egyptian 300 thread sateen and the Easy Care Luxury 300 thread Polycotton sateen bedlinen.

Serving Scotland for 25 Years

We have an exceptional range of Duvets and Pillows



OF COTTON which include Down Feel Microfibre/Cotton Percale, The world’s finest linen and towelling


and Natural Goose Feather and Down.


King of Cotton are offering Scottish customers a huge 25% discount on all Duvets, Pillows and Bedding Protectors. In celebration of the relaunch of Hospitality in Scotland. Visit our website, when you get to checkout with your purchase, use the reader offer code:

SCOTLAND and you will receive a 25% discount. L O N D O N









Creating a Buzz with Hilton Doubletree The Hilton Group And Hilton Double Tree need no introduction as leaders in the hotel and hospitality sector with the brands being renowned for quality and service. We caught up with Craig Munro General Manager of Hilton Double Tree Glasgow Central on how he and the venue have adapted and their plans to create a buzz across the industry. Like everyone in our great industry we have been massively impacted as a business for which the hardest part has been the impact on our people, having to scale our team back to suit the current

and immediate future demands. We have been fortunate to keep much of our senior team who have been critical to the success of the hotel since our rebrand in 2016. We have however remained open throughout in order to support key workers and essential travellers which has in a way been refreshing as it has almost been full circle for many of us, going back to the shop floor again and literally knowing everything about our customers (likes, dislikes and even their children’s names!). Some of our guests have stayed with us each week for months now and almost feel part of the team. We have implemented many safety procedures,

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including Hilton’s Cleanstay programme as well as the Safe to Trade Scheme assisted by Shield Safety, our H&S partners in order to keep both our guests and our teams safe. We are fortunate to be supported by both our management company, Amaris Hospitality as well as Hilton as a brand who have helped us reschedule 1000s of reservations, 100s of event bookings as well as supporting us on our focus, which is very much now domestic travel and local corporate business, a clear shift from international tourism and national/global corporate business which we historically have based much of our decisions around. With the much needed dates announcement of the 26th April and the 17th May for reopening, we like all hospitality businesses just now are starting to see a glimmer of sunshine coming out at the end of the tunnel as we long to get more of our colleagues

back to work and welcome some leisure guests back and enjoy the “buzz” of the hotel. That being said, we still need clarity on the events market reopening, which makes up some 25% of our annual turnover. It is great to state that smaller events can restart from 17th May but event organisers need time to sell for which with no guidance as of yet on this from Scottish Government, we are still very much in the dark. We have always adhered to the guidance from both Glasgow City Council and Scottish Government for which I do hope that this is released in the coming weeks, as we all deserve a party, for which our ballroom is not shy of hosting a few! There has been a huge feeling of us all being in it together when it comes to our suppliers, with many pausing contracts, reducing fees and some even giving up some of their time for free to help us.


It has encouraged me to see how some of our event suppliers have pivoted their business in order to weather the storm, such as Greg from Blue Parrott who has created the “sanitiserguys” brand, who has helped us out with some of our safety aspects as well as Malky from Vision Events Glasgow who has created a virtual events studio in our ballroom to help support businesses as charities in raising much needed funds. Our immediate focus is on building up our business again post 26th April and bringing our teams back in a safe and structured way. With a lot of the team, not being a huge part of the operation over the past 12 months, we will have a lot of training and re-inductions to do, especially as multi-skilling is

now how we do things. We are seeing huge demand for events post July and are looking forward to launching our Xmas 2021 ‘Glitterball’ schedule in April and seeing people getting their black-ties and ballgowns on once again. Executive Chef, Stewart Goldie and his team certainly will have their work cut out in the last quarter of 2021! We will also be launching our own Gin, PinC (Gaelic for Pink) for which the team behind Cask partnered with the illicit Spirits company in its creation making this hand in hand with them. We were scheduled to launch this in April 2020 so it’s been tough holding back, what in my eyes is a fantastic Gin!

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The Ben is here as a safety net for anyone who works in our trade and is facing extreme financial hardship. We may be in a position to offer one-off financial assistance on a case by case basis. If this applies to you or any colleagues please contact

chris@bensoc.org.uk 0141 353 3596 79 West Regent Street Glasgow, G2 2AW

Benevolent Society of the Licensed Trade Scotland is a Scottish Charity SC 005604. Scottish Charity Regulator

Why your next fryer should be a Valentine! Valentine Equipment Ltd are recognised across the UK and Ireland as suppliers of an outstanding range of freestanding, built-in and table-top fryers. With over 60 years of experience, Valentine are known for their innovative design and Swiss build quality, with their fryers used by leading restaurants, pub chains and diverse foodservice operations to deliver consistently great food.

Valentine Equipment Ltd are recognised across the UK and Ireland as suppliers of an outstanding range of freestanding, built-in and table-top fryers. With over 60 years of experience, Valentine are known for their innovative design and Swiss build quality, with their fryers used by leading restaurants, pub chains and diverse foodservice operations to deliver consistently great food.

important features. At Valentine, we understand that a larger tank capacity does not always equate to a higher product output… in fact, we pride ourselves in the high output to oil ratio provided by our fryers. With a specially designed smaller “cool zone” compared to other leading brands, oil usage can be significantly lower, reducing your costs whilst maximising product output.

With Valentine fryers often providing more than 30 years of service, it’s easy to see why Valentine remains at the forefront of the fryer industry. However, recognising the longevity of this key cooking equipment is just the start of understanding why you could be better off buying Valentine.

The Valentine team have recently developed a simple fryer comparison tool which allows you to compare the many benefits of purchasing a new Valentine fryer against other fryer brands. By comparing initial cost, footprint, warranty, oil usage and product output of similar high-quality brands, over a 5-year term, we’re confident that you will soon recognise why your next fryer should be a Valentine!

When choosing the right fryer for your kitchen, product output is often at the top of the list of

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Glasgow's oldest restaurant Rogano unveils latest mural in City Centre Ahead of the easing of lockdown restrictions, Glasgow’s oldest restaurant Rogano has unveiled its latest mural. Working with local illustrator Sophy Louise, Rogano’s boarded frontage has been injected with a burst of colour. The latest mural “Martini” is the third in the series, and features bartenders mixing an all-time classic – The Martini. The mural follows a 70’s inspired dinner party and Champagne cabaret. Each artwork

has been telling the hidden stories of Rogano while the restaurant doors remain closed. From their illustrious guests dining over oysters to glassware and Champagne coming alive – the latest piece pays homage to the art of crafting of a perfectly mixed drink. Artist Sophy Louise “I loved hearing the stories of Rogano from the team and customers alike, there was always such a vibrant tone to them. I wanted to capture this sense of energy and boldness within the mural. Rogano is famed for its cocktails,

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which I really wanted to take centre stage within this design, with the backdrop of the art deco bar feature. I really wanted to create an image that would make people smile as they walked by - from its bubbliness and bright colours” Business development managed Claire Stuart commented “Rogano as a restaurant has a great deal of romance attached to it. Over the last year reading the stories of customers memories of the venue really assert what a special restaurant Rogano is. Being able to tap into its rich history and share some of those stories, while working with some incredible local artists and charities helps give the venue a purpose while the doors remain closed.” Upon completion each piece will have been in position for eight weeks, after which a fresh canvas will go up and a new artist will take over. Prints of “Martini” are available for pre-order with £5 from each print sale being donated to Shelter. Sophy Louise’s Martini at mural is available to view outside the Rogano at 11 Exchange Place until the end of May when our next artist will be unveiled. 29

www.bdpcontractfurniture.co.uk INDOOR - OUTDOOR

Suppliers of Bespoke Banquette and booth seating Manufactured in our Glasgow workshop to a very high standard Suppliers of quality contract indoor and outdoor furniture Recovery and polishing service

Cala Showhome

Boardwalk Falkirk

Duck Bay Marina

The Speakers Maybole

37 Hepburn Road, Hillington Park, Glasgow G52 4RT Tel. 0141 883 0400 / www.bdpcontractfurniture.co.uk