Member Spotlight – Gillian from Treetops Cottages & Spa

Updated on: April 8 2013

Member Spotlight

We’re always pleased to receive testimonials and reviews from our happy customers and Hilden members, which is why we jumped at the chance to interview the lovely Gillian from Treetops Cottages & Spa about not just her experience with our hotel quality linens, but with setting up her own self-catering premises from scratch.

Read on to find out how she put her everything into starting up her dream business and why she’d recommend products from Hilden Linens to any other bed and breakfast, guest house or small hotel.

exterior blog

Hi Gillian, we love how quaint and quirky your cottages at Treetops look – could you tell us a little more about Treetops and what you do there?

My husband Brian and I hadn’t actually planned to start a bed and breakfast, but after problems with a property we were due to move into were so bad the place actually had to be demolished, we found ourselves looking for an alternative.

That’s when we found Treetops, and after falling in love with the house, grounds and dilapidated farm buildings we moved in October 2007 and started work on the place immediately. But that didn’t come without its own problems. Although I quickly drew up plans in my mind to convert the outbuildings into self-catering holiday cottages, we didn’t get planning permission for them straight away.

After a lot of hard work, research and writing we finally succeeded in getting Treetops off the ground for our opening day on October 1st 2011. The sun was shining, our guests enjoyed temperatures of 80 degrees and the cottages were occupied right from the word go! We’ve had some fantastic guests stay over the past 15 months and are very proud of our popular unique selling point – as well as a leisure complex that includes a sauna, hot tub and pampering salon we’re pleased to boast an indoor heated swimming pool!

We’re even planning to convert more accommodation as we’ve had to use our home as overflow accommodation, so watch this space!

swimming pool bog

Obviously hospitality linens face some pretty regular washing; do you find yourself facing any problems like dwindling quality or durability as a result?

At the start of our venture, definitely. By the time all of the building work was finished we found ourselves very short of money to actually equip and furnish the cottages, and didn’t have any idea where we could buy really good bedding and towels with so little spare time to search.

In the end we ended up buying from TJ Hughes and Morrisons, and the quality was just terrible. The linens were weird to wash and now have some very strange staining on the pillow slips; they’re gone for rags!  As a result I’m gradually replacing all of our bedding, quilts, towels, mattress and pillow protectors, table cloths and new spa towels, gowns and sheets for the massage beds with Hilden products, a company I feel I can trust.

What would you say makes you choose products from Hilden Linens over those of the competition?

When we buy from Hilden we’re always supplied with great quality products. I never feel like I can’t trust the brand and I know I can rely on you for fantastic prices and plenty of help and advice on the products. This is an immense help for a new business such as ours, with John in particular deserving thanks for his honesty on your products.

If you could choose one Hilden product to recommend to our blog readers, what would it be and why?

Definitely your bath towels and bath sheets. Not only do they look and feel great but they can be washed and washed without it affecting their quality. Our guests just love them which, at the end of the day, is the most important thing for us.

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Michelle Pegg is the Assurance and Compliance Manager at Hilden Linens.