Hotel Hell - Hotel Chester - OPEN

Hotel Hell Hotel Chester

In this Hotel Hell episode, Gordon Ramsay visits Hotel Chester in Starkville, Mississippi.

Hotel Chester was bought by David and Sukie Mollendor in 2000.

Prior to buying the hotel, David travelled the world as a hotel troubleshooter for about 39 years.

At its early days, the 36 bedroom hotel was a real success as it is located close to Mississippi University.

David got involved in a car accident which crushed his feet and made him bedridden for almost 6 months.

The hotel began to lose so much money that the couple had to file for bankruptcy.

The financial losses were so bad that the bank foreclosed on their home so they had to move into the hotel.

As they couldn’t afford payroll, Sukie had to leave her job in real estate and took over as chef and temporary manager.

But Sukie has no experience and the hotel is suffering as a result.

Gordon gets lost on his way to the hotel and asks a group of students for directions.

They describe the hotel as easy to miss but they know the hotel as it is next to their campus.

Gordon finally gets to the hotel but complains about the lack of a proper sign for the hotel.

David explains that he graduated with a major in hotel and restaurant management after serving in Vietnam.

David doesn’t think the reason for the hotel’s decline is the quality of food or service or the state of the hotel.

He reveals that the rooms haven’t been retouched for the past 10 years.

The walls are cracked, the furniture is old and rough with scuff marks, the carpets need replacing and the room is bland.

Gordon asks Sukie about her experience in the kitchen.

Sukie grew up with her parents who had a Japanese sushi restaurant in Washington DC but she has no experience in cooking.

Gordon unpacks then goes down to the restaurant to eat and orders from Lindsey, one of the servers.

He finds out that all the food they serve is Japanese and are cooked by Sukie.

After waiting for over an hour, Lindsey finds Gordon sleeping on a couch.

He wakes to go eat his now-ready food, which he found disgusting as it is greasy and has a weird taste.

Sukie is frustrated that Gordon doesn’t like any of the sushi she made and goes to tell David, who laughs at the whole situation.

Gordon asks Lindsey, who also works as assistant manager about the issues the hotel is facing.

Lindsey says around twelve guests visit the restaurant on a busy weekend.

Gordon meets with the couple and complains about how long it took to cook the foods, the taste and weird combinations.

David states that the business is $900,000 in debt, which Sukie says she had no idea about.

While the owners argue about the finances of the hotel, guests who have heard about Gordon’s visit begin to check into the hotel.

The hotel and restaurant is filled for the first time in many years.

Gordon observes the dinner service of the hotel and isn’t surprised to see that the guests haven’t being served after waiting for over an hour.

Sukie is having trouble in the kitchen, David won’t help her.

Gordon learns from her daughter that Sukie has been struggling ever since David’s accident.

While David had been forced to step back the hotel has been in a state for the past two years.

Gordon heads over to a local supermarket to pick up some ingredients to cook the waiting customers some food.

He cooks them sliders to finish off the service.

Finally, everyone is fed, after about three hours of waiting for food.

After the disappointing service, Gordon learns that the Mollendor family live in the handicapped room of the since the accident.

David had broken ankles and his back was broken and he has been recovering for the past 5 years.

The next day, Gordon takes the couple to some local successful businesses.

They say they serve hundreds of students on weekdays and more on weekends.

Gordon explains that the secret lies in drawing in the students of the university in the area and that they have to tap into the community.

Gordon reveals changes to the hotel including the new signage, modernized rooms and the beer garden has also been given a makeover with craft beer on tap.

There is also a revamped room for David and Sukie.

The menu has also been changed featuring local food and the Gordon burger, which would be appealing to the students.

A new chef and two assistants are brought in to help with the re-launch of the hotel’s restaurant and training the new staff.

Gordon offers to pay her salary until they can afford to pay themselves.

With word out about the hotel’s new look and service, young locals arrive.

The room and beer garden impresses everyone as does the Gordon burger.

Without Sukie in the kitchen, the new head chef is doing a fantastic job of making great food and getting it out in a timely manner.

Before he takes his leave, Gordon takes David and Sukie out for a drive.

He shows them an apartment he rented for them for six months so they don’t have to live at the hotel.

The couple were flabbergasted with the number of ways Gordon has helped and the new start he had given them.



What Happened Next at Hotel Chester?


Hotel Chester is open.

Since Gordon’s visit, guest bookings at the hotel has gone up and the guests are enjoying the new improvements.

With the new menu and beer garden, the hotel has become a local hit with the college kids.

The new buzz around town shows the hotels now bringing in thousands of guests every weekend and the couple now work as a team.

They have kept most of Gordon's menu but made some changes and the Gordon burger is still very popular.

Yelp reviews and Trip Advisor reviews since Gordon visited are mostly very positive, with compliments on the friendly and helpful staff, the beer garden and the breakfast.

Planning a visit to the hotel? Check out their website for further information.

Hotel Chester aired on August 11 2014, the episode was filmed in June 2013 and is Hotel Hell season 2 episode 4.


Read About More Hotel Hells

Next episode - Calumet Inn

Previous episode - Applegate River Lodge

This post was last updated in March 2021.

28 comments:

  1. My favorite episode until now. I fell in love with those two and it was nice to see Gordon finally off his angry cursing character. He is such a sweet man.

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    1. Made me cry .... watched it more than 10 times .... such a sweet couple & ramsy was such a doll .... awesome!

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  2. Sukie was lovely. So sweet haha. I didn't see them staying open, but I am glad they did x

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  3. This was most probably the most significant episode that really touched me. Moreover its fantastic to see that there are no unnecessary dramas at all in this particular episode.

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  4. Spent 2 nights at this place, the food and hospitality was superb

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  5. I actually cried a little watching this episode. I wanted to hug them all. This should prove Gordon is a good man.

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  6. strawberries on a sushi.. what was she thinking xD

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    1. Watching this episode of Hotel Hell for the first time right now. It's near the end, so I wanted to know if the nice could had gotten their Happily Ever After--I read your comment at the EXACT same time that Gordon said it. :)

      Such a great episode :) And really--Strawberries on sushi? :D

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  7. I loved this episode! I'm really happy they are still open and doing well! They was such a sweet family! :')

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  8. Loved this episode. It even made me cry. Thanks Gordon for the fantastic person you are!

    I'm glad this hotel is still up and running! I hope I may get the chance to visit some day! :D

    Greetings from Norway

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  9. I just saw this episode and wow!

    Never have I seen two more deserving people of Gordon's assistance.

    No arguing, no dramas, just a willingness to accept his help.

    I wish David and Sukie all the best in their future.

    Greetings from an Aussie living in Sweden.

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  10. This episode proves that you don't need over the top drama for a show like this to be a hit. What a lovely couple and so deserving of Gordon's help!

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  11. I saw that episode at TLC in Russia, it has touched me really a lot, I am so happy, Gordon helped them and they accepted that so wishfully! All the best, I really love to see American historic hotels in small cities revive again!

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  12. This is the best episode I have ever watched on Hotel Hell. So touched by this family and Gordon's generosity. Glad to see they are back on their feet. It is so beautiful to see people helping each other.

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  13. One of Ramsay's best episodes. Really shows the good side of the man. Nice to see there are still people out there willing to help out the Good people in need.

    In my opinion, there are many he has helped who have not been at all deserving of such.

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    1. Agreed! He helped to super people in time of need - giving their children an option to continue the legacy of this beautiful place!

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  14. Love this couple they seem so cute together. I wish the best for them and their family.

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  15. Does anyone know if the lovely couple still owns the hotel?

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  16. Love this episode best! It sees the sweetest side of both Gordon and humble people like Dave and Sukie who are not egoistic and most willing to accept anything that Gordon planned. The makeover and a home, were the owners' just reward. Lovely couple, happy that both they and Hotel Chester are still going strong.

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  17. I am so happy that they still operate they truly deserve it. such a sweet family.

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  18. Lord, I am in tears after watching this episode I just had to find out if they were still open!
    So nice to see an ep that isn’t ungreatful people who have brought it on themselves - this pair fell on hard times and it’s lovely to see them doing so well, and how amazing is Gordon for all he did for them?
    Not sure when I’ll recover!

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  19. After watching this one, I turned to my girlfriend and said, 'we have to go here.' The food looked incredible.

    Given that David had 40 years of experience combined with the patience Gordon showed them given the sensitivity of the situation, it would be absolutely tragic if they closed. I loved this episode. They were so kind.

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  20. I also just watched this episode for the first time and was also brought to tears...and also had to research after! So glad that they’re doing well. Couldn’t want it for a more resilient, lovely family. Well done!

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  21. I've just watched this for the first time here in the UK on Channel 4, and am watching it again now on Channel 4+1. Like many others have said it has moved me to tears. What a lovely couple and Gordon has a good heart. Best episode ever and I'm really glad they are doing well now. I would fly to the US just to meet Dave and Sukie.

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  22. I just finished this episode tonight on YouTube, and then jumped on here to see if the hotel was still open...and I cheered when I saw the words OPEN! Of all the hotels Gordon has worked on, this is one of the few which brought me to tears because not only did it show this tough man has a good heart, but we got an honest to goodness happy ending with two people who deserved it. I've never planned on going to Mississippi, but if I did, this would be the reason!

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  23. After watching this episode on Youtube I'm so happy to find out the Chester is still open. The owners deserve it so much. And Gordon showed what a good man he really is, being that nice and warmhearted to them.

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