F ollowing an award of almost £400,000 in development funding from South of Scotland Enterprise (SOSE), the family-owned and run Cairndale Hotel in Dumfries has announced a major transformation project.

The £2 million renovation will see the existing leisure club replaced with a luxury spa for day guests, overnight visitors and those seeking a wellness retreat – making it the natural choice for spa-goers in the south of Scotland.

The investment will result in 16 new jobs and generate an estimated additional income in excess of £12 million over 10 years for the local economy through the creation of a new destination tourist attraction for both visitors and local people to use and enjoy.

Great British Life: One of the new treatment roomsOne of the new treatment rooms (Image: Cairndale Hotel)

The transformation project will be taken forward with a net zero focus, including an enhanced heating system to reduce carbon emissions, use of air sourced heat pumps and LED lighting.

The Wallace family, who have owned and run the hotel for 40 years, have contacted local leisure club members to notify them of the changes, which saw the current facilities close on January 3.

The closure will make space for new spa treatment rooms, relaxation areas and a spa cafe. Sneak previews of the plans suggest that the new spa will significantly elevate the wellness experience offered by the hotel to serve day spa guests from the local community as well as attracting tourists to the region.

Great British Life: Hotel director Matthew Wallace Jr. Hotel director Matthew Wallace Jr. (Image: Picture: Graham Edwards)

Speaking of the development, director Matthew Wallace Jr, said: “This is a decision we have not taken lightly. We know that our leisure club users will be disappointed that we can no longer offer them a membership service. However, we believe that this is the right decision for the future of the Cairndale Hotel as well as the local community and economy.

“We are fortunate enough to be surrounded by a vast amount of outstanding natural beauty and we aim to embrace that within our expanded offering, working in partnership with other local businesses and suppliers.”

Professor Russel Griggs OBE, chair of SOSE, added: “The South of Scotland is a fantastic tourism location and we want to ensure we continue to improve the excellent facilities we have on offer for visitors. Projects such as the one being taken forward at the Cairndale Hotel will do that, providing additional income for the wider Dumfries area, as well as new employment. It also builds on the visitor facilities already available in the town.

“In addition, the Cairndale Hotel investment ties into the soon-to-be-launched South of Scotland Responsible Tourism Strategy, which aims to deliver the best for our visitors, our businesses, our people, our communities and our environment.”

Work began on Monday, January 8, with plans to launch the Cairndale Spa to visitors in spring. Those wishing to follow the spa development’s progress can find out more at www.cairndalehotel.co.uk/spa