Last month I introduced you to my "happy place" Glenfinnan, Scotland. This month we're going back there for a deeper look into the Glenfinnan House Hotel.
I first saw this hotel in 1997 on a short stop during a Highland tour. I was so inspired by the scenery I decided to email the hotel with some questions about the village for a writing project. I figured, why not? I had nothing to lose. If no one responded I would be no worse off. To my delight, Manja Gibson responded to my email (and several more over the years!) It was that kindness that had me purposely making reservations there when I went back to Scotland in 2007.
Glenfinnan House Hotel is located on the shore of Loch Shiel. The building was built between 1752 and 1755 by Alexander MacDonald VII, who was wounded at Culloden fighting for Bonnie Prince Charlie. The current owners, the MacFarlane family, bought the house in 1971. Unfortunately at that time it was in a great state of disrepair. The family decided to renovate it and convert it into a hotel. They did take care to retain as much of the old flavor of the house as they could. The hotel is currently managed by Manja and her award-winning chef husband Duncan. They took over in 2002 and since then, the hotel has won several awards including Bar Food Medal 2010, Child-Friendly Award 2010, Small Country Hotel of the Year 2009, and the Rising Star Hotel of the Year 2009.
The hotel is 2 floors and there is no elevator. I know because I had to haul my suitcase up the stairs! There are several types of rooms ranging from suites to singles. Something that struck me odd was they had no locks on the doors. At first, this made me a bit nervous about leaving anything of value in the room, but then it felt right. The place is peaceful and beautiful and stepping into the hotel almost makes you feel like you’ve returned to another time in history when you could trust people. It didn’t take me long to adapt! The guest rooms are on the second floor. When you walk in the front door you enter the lobby. Situated in the center of the room is a fireplace with some chairs. When I went, a fire crackled there even though it was summer. Also on the first floor are the dining room, a common room with comfortable chairs, books and games, and the bar. All three have big windows with a gorgeous view of the front lawn and the loch. For more stunning pictures of the hotel, the rooms and the scenery, visit their website here.