The grand Regency building was once Moray House Hotel. During the Second World War the hotel was commandeered by the Royal Corps of Signals. Legendary comic actor Norman Wisdom was billeted at the hotel in 1943 during his four and a half year stay in Cheltenham. Norman Wisdom was based at the top-secret CNW, Cheltenham Network. The film and TV star was best known for his slapstick character, Norman Pitkin. In 2003 the then Sir Norman Wisdom O.B.E. revisited Cheltenham and unveiled a blue plaque at the Carlton Hotel to commemorate his time spent there.
In 1971 the Carlton Hotel was part of the Mount Charlotte Group. An advertisement of that time gave details of ‘inclusive weekends at the Carlton Hotel, Cheltenham from £8.50 per person (plus VAT)’. This offer comprised of Friday dinner, Saturday early morning tea, newspaper, breakfast and dinner and on Sunday, early morning tea, newspaper, breakfast and lunch all inclusive with your room. Not a bad deal for just £8.50. The Carlton Hotel was described as ‘ideally suited in a quiet tree-lined residential road, surrounded by fine Regency buildings, only 350 yards from the Promenade, which is acknowledged as being one of the finest shopping centres in the country. The hotel offers all modern facilities including comfortable and very well-appointed public rooms and bedrooms. There is a well-kept garden also available for residents’ relaxation. The restaurant, overlooking a pleasant garden, offers extensive a la carte and table d’hote menus, and a choice of wines to satisfy the most demanding palate. Two comfortable lounges, 48 bedrooms – all with private bathrooms, telephone and radio, all rooms have television. 2 private suites, international shaving points, colour television room, night porter service and room service.
David and Bridget Price bought the Carlton Hotel from the Mount Charlotte Group in the 1970’s. During their ownership they extended the hotel in the 1980’s, and bought the building next door – Gransden – in the early1990’s. The Gransden was converted to create 13 extra bedrooms. In August 2006 David and Bridget sold the Carlton Hotel to the Hotel du Vin Group who had 12 hotels across the UK. Hotel du Vin’s chief executive said: “We’re going to create a hotel that Cheltenham can be proud of.” The group was intending to invest £10 million into transforming the 46-bedroom hotel. After refurbishment Hotel du Vin opened on July 2nd 2007.
In November 2010 the Hotel du Vin offered 49 bedrooms and suites which, according to a press release, were ‘all decorated in the inimitable Hotel de Vin style. Centred around a showpiece spiral staircase and stunning wine glass chandelier, the hotel features a trademark bistro, Health du Vin spa treatment rooms, extensive al-fresco and private dining, at the Sinner’s Enclosure Grape and Grain bar.’
Montpellier Chapter Hotel was bought by Singapore based Frasers Hospitality in December 2015 as part of a £36 million deal that also included to Magdalene Chapter in Exeter and the Hotel Seattle in Brighton.
In May 2016 the hotel had a change of identity to trade under the boutique Malmaison name. Scott Harper, chief executive of Malmaison said: “The Montpellier Chapter is full of character, and we are extremely excited to be bringing the Malmaison brand to this iconic hotel. Cheltenham is a beautiful and atmospheric town and is the perfect location to introduce the brand.”