The Golden Lion Hotel in St Ives has been sold to hotel business, the Coaching Inn Group, for £2.5 million.

The eighteenth-century inn, in Market Hill, features 25 bedrooms and had been owned by Mike and Alison Purchas who refurbished and upgraded the site before it was sold by specialist property adviser, Christie & Co.

Tim Gooding, a director at the company, said: “We are delighted to have sold this business to a growing and successful company who will take great care in developing the operation even further and adding to the exceptional job undertaken by the vendors.”

The deal is part of the Coaching Inn Group's £20 million expansion programme, which it hopes to see 15 sites acquired by the end of 2016.

So far, the company has bought five in the last year, and has properties spanning the country including Northamptonshire, Leicestershire and the Cotswolds.

“The sale indicates growing buyer confidence in the pub and hotel sectors and reinforces the improving level of activity we've been experiencing over the course of this year,” Mr Gooding added.

“We believe that this trend is set to continue, and expect to see an increase in interest in the pub and hotel markets as 2016 progresses.”