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Friday, 19 December 2014

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Hotel copule earn top AA award

A COUPLE have won a five-star award just weeks after taking over a popular bed and breakfast establishment in Rosthwaite, near Keswick.

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FIVE-STAR EFFORT: Gary and Donna MacRae took over Hazel Bank Country House, Rosthwaite, near Keswick, eight months ago and have been given an AA gold award

Gary and Donna MacRae took over Hazel Bank Country House in March and were visited by an AA inspector eight weeks later.

They have now been awarded an AA gold award for hospitality, guest accommodation, quality standard, dinner and breakfast.

Their son Adam, 24, will help them to run the bed and breakfast.

The couple will also continue to run The Wild Strawberry coffee shop in Main Street, Keswick.

Mr MacRae, 52, who ran the Langstrath Country Inn in Stonethwaite with Donna for 15 years, said: “We were pleasantly surprised and delighted when the inspector sat us down and told us the good news.

“We took over the week before Easter and we already had bookings so it was a good learning curve.

“Donna was brought up in the Borrowdale valley and I was brought up in Keswick so we have a lot of local knowledge which our customers can benefit from.”

The eight-bedroom Victorian country house, with views of Great Gable and Scafell Pike, was popular with author Sir Hugh Walpole who based some of his stories there.

Mrs MacRae, 48, who worked as a teaching assistant at Borrowdale Primary School for five years, said: “Bookings have been going really well and previous residents are coming back.”

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