Mixed reaction to Rothesay hotel proposal

Rothesay's old bathing station, which would be demolished if the proposal was to go ahead.
Rothesay's old bathing station, which would be demolished if the proposal was to go ahead.

Members of the public have been having their say on the recent proposal to build a new luxury hotel and spa complex in Rothesay, with opinion divided.

Debate has been ongoing on the Buteman’s Facebook page this week.

A visualisation of what the new hotel complex would look like.

A visualisation of what the new hotel complex would look like.

In reacting to the news of the proposal, Colin Fulcher commented: “I would be interested to see the research of need and demand behind this venture.

“Naturally most people like myself would love to see this kind of facility built on our island, though is there any realistic evidence that it supports the need for this?”

Alastair Forsyth replied: “In business nothing is guaranteed, but if it is put forward as a top class facility, and this looks as if they have the right idea, then people will travel.

“We have a great island & if we’re lucky enough to get this facility then I can see the island becoming a major attraction again.

“Let’s not forget the money being spent at the Glenburn, the money Bute Estates are spending plus the Pavilion, it’s all positive & for me I’m really optimistic about Bute’s future.”

Several people expressed concerns that the visualised hotel didn’t fit with the island’s existing architecture.

Denise Marinucci commented: “Aside from the fact that it is an aesthetic atrocity and completely out of context with respect to both the built and natural environment, it would change the atmosphere of the island as well.

“It belongs in the harbour of a big city, not here. Disproportionate and dismal!”

Mary Edmondson agreed: “Any job creation on the island is welcome but sometimes these projects fail to deliver the promised local employment.

“The design is wholly incongruous, the proposal needs a rethink.”

Gary Steele said: “There’s no doubt this hotel would succeed. It looks to be aimed at the type of folk that flock to the likes of Portavadie which unlike Rothesay is in the middle of nowhere and has little else to offer.

“Arran, Mull, Skye and throughout Argyll have modern leisure hotels and its about time we had too. Anyone wishing to invest millions in upgrading and modernising Rothesay should be welcomed with open arms but sadly I suspect there will be many objectors who somehow think an old, unrealistic, outdated ‘doon the water’ Rothesay of the 60’s is the way forward.

“We cannot afford to be left behind in tourism or miss out on long term job creation or opportunities for local businesses and suppliers.”

Dana Blyth commented: “All the well off people/tourists I know (and that’s a lot) go to Bute exactly for its old world appeal as they can get this proposed building’s type of accommodation anywhere, anyplace in the world and with better weather.

“In my opinion Bute would lose out turning its back on its traditional look. Instead this should be played up and made the most of.

“Look at other successful towns in the world. They play up their inherited uniqueness while offering modern luxury indoors too. They certainly don’t plunk incongruous obliterating structures in the middle of their best features.”