Hope on the horizon for abandoned Sandown eyesore as sale goes through

It’s emerged the freehold for the derelict site of The Ocean Hotel and King’s House in Sandown has finally been sold. A step forward, but other matters could delay

Ocean Hotel

After the Carlauren Group went into administration at the end of 2019, Sandown was left blighted by the unfinished renovation of The Ocean Hotel and King’s House.

The Group had planned a luxury hotel and beach club on the site, but it has remained an eyesore for the seaside town for several years.

However, hope could be on the horizon as news of the sale of the freehold has emerged.

Ward: I have been in regular contact with the Receiver
Sandown South councillor, Ian Ward, who is also cabinet member at Isle of Wight council for transport and infrastructure, posted the news on his Facebook page on Thursday.

Cllr Ward said,

“I’m really pleased to report that the Ocean Hotel has been sold!

“It been a difficult time with various rumours going around about why it wouldn’t sell. I have been in regular contact with the Receiver and Planning Enforcement Officer, who have both kept me up to-date and briefed me about the negotiating strategy, which clearly worked.

“So now lets’ look to the future.”

Ocean Hotel

He went on to answer questions in the thread, saying, “the email to me says the sale of the freehold has been completed” and that he believes the leaseholders have been included in the sale.

Not so straightforward
It sounds like the sale of the buildings would not be the final fix of bringing a refreshed building to Sandown.

Some with knowledge of the site think it might just be the first stage, as it’s thought that there are a large number of leaseholders – up to 70 – could be involved.

Ocean Hotel

Complicated ownership structure?
Concerns about this have been raised by Nick Stuart (Chair of IW LibDems) and Cllr Debbie Andre (Leader of Island Independent Group).

Nick said,

“When I was working in insolvency the worst assets were those with complicated ownership structures.”

Cllr Andre (Sandown North) added,

“I’ve worked in property and single leaseholds are often problematic. I’d be surprised if this has been resolved so quickly.”

Images: © Sandown Hub

Friday, 26th February, 2021 2:47pm


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Filed under: Isle of Wight News, Sandown, Top story

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6 Comments on "Hope on the horizon for abandoned Sandown eyesore as sale goes through"

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Benny C
Councillor Ward went on to say that he hadn’t actually read the information but he’d voted anyway. When asked exactly what he had voted for , he replied ‘I am not accountable and I’m very busy’. Mr Ward has cost islanders huge sums as a result of bungled contract negotiations with Island Roads and a badly managed procurement contract which delivered a floating bridge unfit for purpose.… Read more »

It’s not relevant to the refurbishment site, but the King’s Head Hotel part of the The Ocean Hotel is one of the two places on the Island where Charles Darwin stayed in the summer of 1858, and started writing ‘The Origin of Species’. I first heard about this from Janet Browne’s second volume of biography, ‘Charles Darwin: The Power of Place’.


But he moved on to Shanklin seafront and said he preferred it there.


Oh dear! Unfortunately the sale has not completed. Duff information from the council. It’s complicated…


Here’s a link for Janet Browne’s second volume of biography, ‘Charles Darwin: The Power of Place’:

Mark L Francis
Have you ever noticed how BBC war correspondents manage to report wars from the neighbouring country in a flak jacket and a hushed voice ? Well, for the price of a day return ferry ticket for a film crew, they could come to Sandown instead of Jordan. “Here we are in strife-torn Aleppo, where the victorious Kurds are pushing back Turkish-backed Shiite militias…” that sort of thing.… Read more »