Because of a meticulous three-year renovation, this quadrangle of once-derelict farm buildings is now an upscale boutique resort with 5 self-contained cottages (starting from one to three-bedroom), 4 deluxe suites and an thrilling accent – its very personal grass airstrip. The property is a part of a 400-hectare working farm on the Black Isle Peninsula within the Scottish Highlands, roughly 30 kilometres north of Inverness. These fortunate sufficient to personal a airplane can fly there from Inverness Airport in round 10 minutes; for the remainder of us it is a 35-minute switch by street.
With assist from London-based inside specialist Kelling Designs, the house owners have accomplished a commendable job of making a classy, homely house that highlights lots of the constructing’s authentic options. Past the cosy reception space is an intimate wood-panelled bar that results in a pared-back, high-ceilinged eating room with a hovering two-storey characteristic window and a ribbon of uncovered sandstone. Contained in the quadrangle is a manicured grass garden and two firepits that encourage convivial mingling. Unusually, for a property within the Scottish Highlands, there’s not a tartan rug or searching trophy in sight.
My cottage known as Irene (considered one of 4 named after the proprietor’s kids) and it is a self-contained, two-bedroomed abode unfold over two flooring. Downstairs is a high-spec kitchen (suppose Bosch home equipment and Riedel glassware) plus a spacious lounge with scented candles and a log burning range. Upstairs there are two beneficiant king-sized bedrooms with handcrafted Epoc mattresses and a putting crimson painted rest room with underfloor heating and upmarket Bramley toiletries. Artfully positioned Asian-themed ornaments create an upscale, elegant really feel with out detracting from the cottage’s heat atmosphere. It is a kind of uncommon locations the place you immediately really feel snug kicking off your footwear, popping on the kettle and pottering round prefer it’s your very personal Scottish summer time residence.
FOOD + DRINK
Included with the room fee is a hearty breakfast of pastries, cereals and recent fruit, plus cooked choices, together with porridge, haggis and tattie scones (potato pancakes). Visitors can even e book in for dinner, a altering three-course menu that showcases in-season regional produce. I go for the native langoustines to begin, adopted by a superb Highland beef fillet with peppercorn sauce and an indulgent Eton mess for dessert. Whisky connoisseurs will benefit from the tasting flights curated by educated barman Rob Beaton, who even manages to win over this whisky sceptic with a dangerously drinkable cocktail made with a blended Japanese whisky known as Nikka from the Barrel.
OUT + ABOUT
Regardless of its rural setting, the property is well-positioned for exploring the area’s many highlights, which embrace a number of whisky distilleries, quite a few golf programs (most notably the championship hyperlinks at Royal Dornoch) and Fort George, an imposing 18th-century army fortress. Alternatively, you may go dolphin recognizing on an eco-cruise within the Moray Firth, hike via dramatic Glen Affric or drive a bit of the North Coast 500 touring route. After all, given there’s an airfield at your disposal, a sightseeing flight is a well-liked tour, with Highland Aviation providing scenic journeys over Loch Ness and Ben Nevis.
A powerful renovation that is given new life to a historic constructing in an beneath appreciated a part of Scotland. Even in case you by no means make use of the non-public runway, it is nonetheless a splendidly welcoming place to remain.
Newhall Mains Boutique Lodge, Balblair, by Dingwall, Ross-shire. Charges begin at £240 ($400) per night time, together with breakfast. See newhall-mains.com
A pre-dinner “She’s Electrical” (barman Rob’s tackle a Singapore Sling), made with Achroous Gin, Benedictine, Angostura bitters, apricot liqueur and toasted rosemary.
Except you need to depend on taxis, you may want a automobile (or a airplane) to discover.
OUR RATING OUT OF FIVE
Rob McFarland was a visitor of Newhall Mains.