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Reviewed 29 April 2007

Back for our third trip to this magical place only this time we were here for our wedding! The place is spectacular and all the staff so lovely especially Kerry and Jane. They all worked so hard to make our day so special and Phyllis is a very special hidden talent. The food is exquisite and we stayed in the Queen's suite and the King's suite both beautiful rooms along with the Prince's suite where we have stayed before. The Queen's suite is definitely my favourite for the view and size - it is massive. If you are looking for gracious luxury in a fairytale setting visit Inverlochy Castle - you won't be disappointed.

Date of stay: April 2007
  • Trip type: Travelled as a couple
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4  Thank Onslow
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Reviewed 13 November 2006

Wow! This is certainly not the place for someone on a budget travel plan, unless you budget for it. That said, if you have the opportunity to stay here, just do it. The is definitely a place to partake a little indulgence. It is well worth the extra money to experience a stay here. The hotel and grounds are beautiful. Our room, The Prince's Suite, was to die for. Large enough for two people who were traveling together for 6 weeks to spread out and not be in each other's way. I took a bath each night because the tub was the perfect size for soaking. Towels big, fluffy and warmed on a rack. Fresh grapes delivered every morning. Staff that were incredibly polite and obliging without being annoying. Free in -room internet access allowed me to change other travel plans with ease. The food was outstanding and accompanying wine was spectacular. Of course, there were the requisite single malts available for the asking but anyone's tastes could be satisfied here. A beautiful place, with beautiful staff. Highly recommended. It will be a while before I get to go back but I am definitely going to do so.

Date of stay: September 2006
  • Trip type: Travelled as a couple
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8  Thank ingrdo
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Reviewed 26 October 2006

My husband and I stayed here for our wedding anniversary. The room was massive (larger than most NYC apts). and it had stunning views of Ben Nevis.

I agree with the other reviewer that the bathroom was not as high spec as other 5 star hotels but you have to remember, this is a bona fide castle. You can't just go in there, making holes everywhere. I thought it was fine - nothing special (our bathroom was also huge) but not terrible either. It's a bathroom afterall.

What makes this hotel special is the service and dining in the restaurant. It's nice to actually get dressed up for dinner and come downstairs and have waiters bring you aperitifs and hors d'oeuvres while you sit in the grand hall. The food was very nice but again, the service was outstanding. We thoroughly enjoying retiring to the drawing room to have our coffee and petit fours and having the entire room to ourselves. The quiet of the hotel was very peaceful.

There isn't much to do in the immediate area apart from hike ben Nevis so I would recommend Inverlochy Castle for a short visit - as a special treat, rather than staying there for several nights.

Date of stay: September 2006
  • Trip type: Travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Hopping-along
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Reviewed 28 August 2006

Inverlochy touts itself (for example on its website) through a number of awards won as the best hotel in Europe, best hotel in the UK and best value hotel in the UK. This is so far off the mark as to be laughable.

To be best hotel in Europe (voted by travellers, but by putting this on their website, it is also a representation made by the hotel itself), they are up against the best that London, Paris, Monaco et al have to offer. There is no way Inverlochy is in the same league. I stayed for 2 nights in one of the large double bedrooms (£576 per night for bed, breakfast and dinner). These are some of my gripes:

1. Bathrooms were pretty bad. To many guests like me they are the true indicator of the hotel's quality and, incredible as it may seem, I have seen better at Holiday Inn hotels. The grouting was flakey and mouldy. Tiles were chipped. Some tiles had holes in them that had been sloppilly fixed with plaster that was not even sanded down. At least those tiles were the few lucky ones to be fixed at all. The fittings (taps etc) were poor quality, the type you install in a London flat you are trying to rent out to students. Armitage Shanks 1970s stuff. The net curtain in the bathroom (net curtain!) was a tad depressing and brown. The bottled water was complimentary (which does not happen in most hotels). There were no cotton earbuds or any of the various extras you find in semi-decent 5-star hotels (picky, perhaps, but this is supposed to be the best hotel in Europe).

2. The bedroom. The main room was OK. It was a good size, maybe about 35 square metres. The bed was a good canopy design. There was a flat screen TV, a bit small (about 30 inches?) especially since the bed was around 8 metres away and the lights glared onto the screen making it difficult to watch. A laptop was provided, which was a nice touch. The complimentary fruit was pretty tired. All of that I could forgive, but weird grey/black streaks on the (poor quality, low thread count) sheets I could not. No deep satisfaction from sinking into bliss here. No, more Holiday Inn utilitarianism, only with dirty streaks.

3. The communal areas of the hotel are great, just as pictured on the website, calming and impressive without being intimidating. Quadruple height, full of sofas, excellent pianist, good cornice work and general paintwork/wallpaper/carpets. Impressive Murano-style chandeliers. This is certainly where the hotel's work and money has gone.The gardens are perfectly manicured while not too dry and formal. There is a walled garden full of flowers and vegetables which is well worth a visit. And as I said, the views are excellent. There is also a small lake on which you can take a boat, which they provide (I did not do this, so can't provide details). Also part of the communal areas are your fellow guests. If you like hanging out with people around 50-70 years old, who speak quietly and dress well and add to the calm and dignified atmosphere, this is a good hotel for you.

4. Service. The staff are hit and miss. The senior staff (Graeme and Jane) did a great job, when they were available. I ambled past reception many times a day trying to find someone but it was permanently empty. The junior staff generally did a good job but there was some sloppiness, requests not met properly, food orders mixed up and from some employees an air of flippancy that was not appropriate to the dialogue I was having with them.

5. Value for money. The fact that Inverlochy is on a par with the most expensive hotels in Paris and London (look it up on Expedia - the Georges V, the Bristol, the Lanesborough etc) is not in itself a problem. True, Inverlochy is in the middle of nowhere ("Scotland"), in country one normally associates with bed and breakfasts. True it is multiples more expensive than anything else in the area. But I don't mind how expensive it is. What I do mind is what you get for that money. It's not like £500 a night hotels are rare these days. They are all over the place, and many offer great service, and (heresy) clean sheets. What I would love to know, objectively, is Inverlochy's profit and loss account. Assuming they are not creaming off huge profits, what exactly does £500 a night get spent on? Their best feature, the view, is free. The building is also fantastic but was built in Victorian times, and they certainly spend little maintaining most of it. This is most certainly the worst value for money hotel at which I have stayed.

If you are visiting the Highlands and want to stay in a luxury hotel, you don't have a lot of choice. Inverlochy is one of the few options, and perhaps the lack of competition has made it complacent. Is it better than a bed and breakfast? Yes certainly. Is it ten times better? I doubt it. Is it the Lanesborough transplanted to Scotland? Definitely not.

Date of stay: August 2006
  • Trip type: Travelled as a couple
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25  Thank countofmontecristo
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Reviewed 1 August 2006

We were really pleased with the Factors Inn, at £85.00 per head for Dinner Bed and scrumptious breakfast in the Castle, we thought the package offered a bit of romance without too much pain to our credit card.

Didn't get off to a good start though, we arrived about 5.00ish, we couldn't find any staff.The place isn't staffed till 6.30pm, we were expected to check in at the castle, didn't say that on our confirmation letter though, after a frantic phone call this was explained and normal service was resumed.

Dinner at the Factors Inn well was well cooked so long as you enjoy steaks, lacked a bit of atmosphere, we put that down to a foul wet evening and a Monday.

We took coffee in the main hotel no problem, dodged the showers. We arrived and as expected we were treated professionally like any other guest ( £20 for the night- cap glass of Talisker was a bit rich though -ouch!) very friendly and efficient service.

We had originally booked room 5 , but quickly found out it was the noisy room, next to the generator so declined it and we were transfered to room 3 much larger and really comfortable, proper fluffy pillows and queen size bed to boot. Tea & coffee making facilites, but no tea pot . high quality modern bath fittings with plenty of hot water.

Date of stay: July 2006
  • Trip type: Travelled with family
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5  Thank Nick S
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
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