A TOP Christchurch hotel group has announced the appointment of Michael Warren as its new managing director.

Harbour Hotels said Michael, pictured right, has spent the last 17 years working with Hotel du Vin and Malmaison Hotels, holding several senior management positions, most recently as brand director and COO of the Hotel du Vin Group.

He played a significant role in the expansion and development of the Hotel du Vin brand, having been appointed by Robin Hutson and Gerard Basset as their first general manager at the original Hotel du Vin in Winchester, in 1996.

Prior to joining, he spent four years at Chewton Glen, and gained further experience at The Schlosshotel, Kronberg, Frankfurt and Dromoland Castle and Country Club.

In his role, Michael will oversee the Harbour Hotels’ expanding portfolio of south coast hotels, all in prime coastal locations, currently including five properties across Dorset, Devon and Cornwall. Harbour Hotels has also recently obtained planning permission to develop a Southampton Harbour Hotel & Spa, at Ocean Village.

Due to open in summer 2015, the landmark £25m super yacht inspired development will include a 70 bedroom five star harbour hotel, with a fully featured spa, Jetty Restaurant and Champagne roof terrace.

Michael said: “I am delighted to be joining this innovative hotel group at such an exciting stage. “We have an opportunity to do something very special here, as we not only position the Harbour Hotels brand with our new Salcombe Harbour Hotel & Spa, but grow the collection to become the number one UK coastal hotel group.

Nicolas Roach, chairman of Harbour Hotels, added: “This is an extremely important appointment for Harbour Hotels. Michael’s strong background of growing and developing hotel groups will be pivotal in the development of the Harbour Hotels brand.”