The Forte family is synonymous with hotels. After Granada’s hostile takeover in 1996 of Forte, the company founded by his father, Sir Rocco Forte has re-established the name with Rocco Forte Hotels. His first purchase was the five-star Balmoral Hotel in Edinburgh in 1997, and since then another eight hotels have been added. They include Manchester’s Lowry Hotel, the Hotel de Russie in Rome and the Astoria in St Petersburg. All are individually designed to avoid the feel of a chain, but benefit from the Rocco Forte branding. Sales have risen through both acquisition and organic growth, and have gone up 63% a year from £14.6m in 1999 to £63.7m in 2002.
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