Royal friend plans to convert The George in Yarmouth

A friend of the Duke of Sussex has major plans to refit a prestigious 16th Century building with a sauna, hot tubs and sunbeds it has been revealed.

Howard Spooner, an entrepreneur who had Prince Andrew as his childhood babysitter is keen to “inject some fun” into the Island after taking on The George Hotel in Yarmouth from Dame Dianne Thompson, the former chief executive of Camelot.

Mr Spooner has taken on a 3 year lease.

The George is a 17th Century townhouse that now has 17 bedrooms and two restaurants.

The prestigious hotel was inspected by the Food Standards Agency back in November 2018 and it received good ratings for the cleanliness and condition of its facilities and building, and the management of food safety.

In a statement to the press, Mr Spooner said: “I think the Isle of Wight has got so much going for it and it’s such an amazing place to go to.

“There’s a couple of gastropubs and that’s really it – unless you go into one of the more modern marinas there’s all the chains, the All Bar Ones and the whatever elses. It’s all much the same.

“There doesn’t appear to be anywhere like what I’m trying to do there.”

Mr Spooner also owns The Clapham Grand in south west London and has run a string of nightclubs across the capital.