2019-Moffat Lecture 2019

Malmaison and Dakota founder checks in for the 2019 Moffat Awards

Thu, 10 Oct 2019 16:06:00 BST

​One of the biggest names in the UK's hospitality sector talked about his love for the hotel trade at the 2019 Moffat Lecture and Awards at Glasgow Caledonian University.

Hotelier Ken McCulloch, the founder of the Malmaison and Dakota hotel groups, who is renowned for creating stunning and trendsetting developments, was interviewed on stage by Professor John Lennon, Director of the Moffat Centre at GCU, ahead of this year’s annual student scholarship ceremony.

Ken’s attention to detail is legendary in the industry ensuring the aesthetics and service in every hotel is just right.

He spoke about starting in the sector as a 16-year-old, the opportunities available for young people and the importance of investing in training.

During the In Conversation event, Ken also discussed the impact technology companies, such as Uber, Airbnb, and Deliveroo, are having on the travel, hotel and food sector.

He told the students: "If you want to make it in the hotel business, enjoy it, embrace it.

"Hotels are open 365 days a year. It's a phenomenal job, it's done me very well, and I do it because I love it and I surround myself with people who feel the same way."

Professor Lennon added: "Ken McCulloch is a legend in the hospitality sector who has been the originator and creative talent behind a range of independent hotel products from One Devonshire Gardens to Malmaison and Dakota.

“His knowledge and insights are of enormous value and relevance in this highly competitive sector for students and staff alike.”

The Moffat Scholarships were established in 1998 through generous funding from the Moffat Charitable Trust, which was set up by the late James H Moffat and his wife, Dr Margie Moffat OBE, the founders of AT Mays Travel Agent Chain.


2019 Moffat Scholars

  • Ghizlane El Mir - With significant experience working in marketing in Morocco and the UK, Ghizlane is interested in pursuing a career in conference and events.
  • Elina Jakovleva - A fourth-year International Events Management student with industry experience working for Cancer Research.
  • Amy Love - Gained a place at the Lahti University Summer School representing GCU and hopes to pursue a career in events management.
  • Laura Ramage - Laura is an alumnus of the HIT scholarship programme and was the only student named as one the Hospitality Industry Trusts' Top 10 Rising Stars for 2019.
  • Christopher Ross - In the final year of an International Events Management degree, Christopher has organised more than 300 comedy and music events in Scotland.
  • Jordan Ogilvie - Recently relocated to Scotland from Canada, Jordan's long-term ambition is to spearhead an international sporting event.
  • Hope April Scott - Hope joins GCU from Ayrshire College where she was named Hospitality and Tourism Student of the Year. 
  • Niall Smyth - A repeat Moffat scholar in recognition of his academic performance and volunteering roles, Niall has recently secured a job as part of the events team at the SSE Hydro.
  • Jessie Russell - Fourth-year International Events Management student, who recently gained work experience at the Moffat Centre, carrying out visitor experience research at the Ardbeg whisky distillery.