Skye restaurant ‘The Three Chimneys’ changes hands

Eddie and Shirley Spear, with new owner Gordon Campbell Gray

The Three Chimneys has been sold by current owners Shirley and Eddie Spear after 34 years. 

The world-renowned restaurant with rooms, at Colbost on the Isle of Skye, has been purchased by Scots born international hotelier Gordon Campbell Gray. 

Mr Campbell Gray, who is returning to live in Scotland permanently, has said he aims to carry on business at The Three Chimneys as it has always been run, with the introduction of additional investment over time. The Three Chimneys will be part of his new Scottish hotel and restaurant collection, The Wee Hotel Company.

A statement confirming the sale said that all jobs are secure and all current staff will remain in position, including head chef, Scott Davies.

Reservations in the restaurant, and bookings for The Three Chimneys’ six adjacent bedroom suites in The House Over-By, will be honoured under the new ownership and the current, local management team will remain in Skye.

Shirley and Eddie Spear, who reopened The Three Chimneys at Easter in 1985, will remain indirectly involved with the business for a transitional period.

Shirley Spear, co-owner at The Three Chimneys, said: “Eddie and I have dedicated most of our working and family life to The Three Chimneys, here in the Isle of Skye and we are extremely proud of how the restaurant has developed over the past three decades.

“This could not have been possible without the support of many wonderful people, who have all worked exceptionally hard to help us build our reputation over the years. Together, we’ve taken The Three Chimneys’ biggest business constraint – the restaurant’s remote location – and turned it into a unique selling point. We always knew we had to create a memorable experience which exceeded customer expectations in order to grow the business here.

“We have now reached a point in our lives where we want to travel more and work a little less. Our focus has been on finding the right person who shares our vision for what The Three Chimneys can develop further for the long-term future, and we are extremely pleased to have found that person in Gordon.

“We know The Three Chimneys, The House Over-By and our exceptional team will be in great hands. We are also very proud of the fact that Gordon is so keen to invest his outstanding expertise in this remote, fragile area of the island, knowing he has already fallen in love with our beautiful views and peaceful surroundings here at Colbost.”

Gordon Campbell Gray said: “I cannot tell you how privileged I feel to have been given the opportunity to buy somewhere as iconic as The Three Chimneys. I have admired Shirley and Eddie for so many years, and when we were chatting on one occasion and Shirley hinted that perhaps they might consider selling, it was a magical moment. 

“I am very flattered that they would allow me take over the reins of their amazing achievement and the simply outstanding team. For the past few years, I have wanted to come home to apply the skills and knowledge I’ve developed across my career. I have been lucky enough to live in and travel to many countries but, at the end of the day, Scotland is simply one of the most stunning countries in the world; the best!

“I am thrilled to be able to invest time and effort here and to work within a hospitality sector which is, and should be, the envy of the world. The Three Chimneys is a simply wonderful place to begin that journey.”

The Three Chimneys has established itself as a multi award-winning, destination dining experience for more than 30 years.

The adjacent six bedrooms in The House Over-By opened on 1st May 1999.