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“Great Location matched by a Great Team”
Review of Fonab Castle Hotel

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Fonab Castle Hotel
Ranked #5 of 17 Hotels in Pitlochry
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 19 August 2013

We spent two nights at Fonab recently and it deserves high praise for a lovely location matched by a great team and atmosphere. Nothing was too much trouble from collecting and returning us to the train station when our taxi did not turn up to keeping the bar open until 2:00 AM when we were hosting a dinner. Very comfortable room in the new wing, small bathroom but not the end of the world. Being able to sit the balcony with views of the loch more than compensated. Very nice place, very friendly team and deserves success

  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled with friends
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2  Thank norfolk23
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
FonabCastleHotel, General Manager at Fonab Castle Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 22 August 2013

Thank you for the message and for your kind comments.

Helping people out, when in a new area, is just something that goes with hospitality - so picking you up from the station and returning you was absolutely no problem.

Hotels should be far more than just a place to refuel and rest your head, in our opinion, and we are always happy to go that extra mile to make sure you are looked after and comfortable.

We do hope to see you again soon.

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2,137 - 2,143 of 2,198 reviews

Reviewed 18 August 2013

This is a stunning hotel, beautifully decorated throughout. The ounge is gorgeous and the restaurant has lovely views of Loch Faskally ....even the lift is something to behold and was a pleasure to use ( and that's from someone who absolutely hates being in lifts ). The interior design really is quite special and a lot of thought and money has clearly gone into the decor and soft furnishings throughout the castle and adjoining garden wing.

Unfortunately, we encountered a major problem early on in that we had booked a patio garden suite but within a short time after arriving, we had to ask to be moved to another room. To explain, the suite we were initially given was lovely but it's position, closest to Reception, meant that it was subject to really excessive noise from the card activated communal access door leading from the Reception into the wing we were in. Unfortunately, the cards which open both this main door and the individual bedrooms doors make an inordinately loud and somewhat unnecessary beeping noise ( often on multiple occasions depending on whether the user of the card has managed to get to grips with the system). For anyone in the room next to this access door, it's a bit like a loud alarm clock going off in the bedroom, thereby making sleep impossible for the occupants. The beeping is followed by the slamming of the said door which I suspect is a heavy fire door. I note an earlier reviewer had a similar experience with noise problems in the room directly above ours so I do hope the hotel manages to sort this out for future guests as it will undoubtedly continue to cause problems for guests when the hotel is busy.

I was initially told there was no alternative accommodation available as it was a case of "Full House " which was far from satisfatory. However, a few minutes later we did get moved into a room in the main castle ( not a suite but it was still a lovely room which was both comfortable and quiet). The bed was absolutely out of this world in terms of comfort .... A bit like sinking into a cloud.

I must add that we were assured by the concierge that the hotel would be arranging to have the beeps turned off the access door system downstairs which is good as it shows that staff are pro active in addressing problems reported to them by guests. Obviously the "click" most of us are familiar with hearing is quite sufficient to let the card user know that they've been successful in unlocking any door so the screeching beeps really aren't necessary anyway.

Incidentally, the concierge, Otto, was a consummate professional whenever we met him and always quick to lend a hand in whatever way he could.

On our afternoon of arrival, we enjoyed a fabulous afternoon tea which I would highly recommend as a treat ( though do allow yourself a minimum of 5 or 6 hours before attempting an evening meal as the afternoon tea is really very substantial and includes a wide array of home made cakes, sandwiches, cookies and scones with clotted cream & jam) .... The temptation to try everything is just too much !

We also thoroughly enjoyed our evening meal in the bistro. The staff were efficient and on the ball and a special mention should be made of a restaurant supervisor named Ed whose cheerful, friendy and effervescent personality and enthusiasm for his job is a credit to the hotel trade. A very professional young man who deserves to go far.

We later enjoyed cocktails in the stunning lounge and a mention should go to the Night Porter whose name escapes me but is from Fife ..... A friendly, approachable man who was happy to engage with the guests.

Top marks to the chefs for breakfast too. So much more choice than the standard " full Scottish" that everyone else offer (though they offer that too). The breakfast menu offers a lovely array
of tempting items ..... Everything imaginable including smoked salmon & scrambled eggs, kippers, smoked haddock, freshly made pancakes and even steak and eggs .... Also tempting breakfast "starters" including fruit smoothies and a delicious sounding home made yoghurt creation to mention just a few of the choices.

On heading for Reception to check out, we bumped into Ed ( from the restaurant) in the corridor who swiftly took our bags from us and carried them out to the car. Now, how's that for service?

I would say our stay was definitely worth what we paid though I'm unsure how the hotel will fair when it's introductory offer ends and the room prices increase substantially.

We'd highly recommend this hotel for a special occasion or even just a treat. If it maintains the current standard of food and and level of service, it should do very well indeed. Indeed, if they manage to sort out the intolerable noise issues which affect a couple of the rooms, it will be perfect.

Well done to all at Fonab .... Keep up the good work

  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Fyrishsunset
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
FonabCastleHotel, General Manager at Fonab Castle Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 19 August 2013

Thank you for taking the time to give such a fulsome review.

I am delighted that you enjoyed your stay with us and loved the style and decoration of the hotel so much. And for a lift-ophobe, I an pleased you enjoyed ours so much.

As you mentioned, a previous reviewer also mentioned the door and the beeps from our locking system. Our guest's comfort is paramount to what we do and the ethics of the Fonab experience and we are talking to the door lock supplier so as to alleviate the problem of the beeps and getting the self-closers on the doors adjusted so as to minimise any slamming. As a brand new hotel we will have some teething problems and through such comments as yours we can address these problems. So thank you so much for bringing them to my attention.

Unfortunately at the time you were staying with us we were very nearly full so were unable to change you to another suite - but i am glad that you found the alternative room - a Castle Signature Room - just as comfortable and well appointed. Again i am pleased to see that you enjoyed a great night's sleep.

I am also pleased on your comments on our substantial Afternoon Tea - also available with champagne or a G&T and your visit to the Brasserie for dinner and breakfast. Thank you for helping to spread the word about our food and service.

Otto and Ed are delighted at your mention and Andrew, who was the night porter from Fife that you mentioned. we do encourage them to engage with the guests to make sure you have everything you need

As you mentioned, you took advantage of our Introductory Rates - we will continue to monitor our rates so as to offer great value for what we provide. At present we are not the most expensive hotel within Pitlochry - but we do offer far more luxury - in terms of decor, fixtures and fittings - and in service - with a higher ratio of staff to guests than is expected. We know this is appreciated by our guests and so the value of what we offer is greatly appreciated by our guests, rather than the cost.

We all look forward to welcoming you back to Fonab Castle for your next visit.

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Reviewed 18 August 2013

What an outstanding, amazing and luxurious place to stay. My husband and I stayed in the castle, Room 101. This was such luxury , the comfiest bed ever, stunning decor and attention to detail was second to none.....Thierry Mugler toiletries what a treat.
Dinner was outstanding .....fillet steak cooked absolutely perfectly.
The staff is what made our stay so special, Ed your charm ,knowledge and friendly service was so appreciative. Gosia is an asset to the restaurant. All staff were so friendly and helpful so apologies if I haven't mentioned you by name.
We will be back....that's a promise. Thank you for our best hotel stay ever .

  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank lynntodd25
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
FonabCastleHotel, General Manager at Fonab Castle Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 19 August 2013

WOW _ Thank you so much for the very kind comments.

Room 101 is a particular favourite room of mine too. A previous guest mentioned to me that our beds were like 'sleeping on a cloud' and I am glad you agree too. The Thierry Mugler is just the icing on the cake for us - allowing us to offer international luxury as standard.

I am also delighted you had a great meal and experience in our brasserie and the staff you mentioned will be as pleased as punch at the mention and thank you for acknowledging all the other staff who worked hard to make sure your stay was comfortable - from the housekeeping staff to the dishwashers, we all thank you for choosing Fonab.

We all look forward to welcoming you back - very soon, regards from us all.

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Reviewed 17 August 2013

We stayed one night in a castle room. The decor is beautiful and the bathroom luxurious. We wanted to check out the other room types available as we will return to Fonab one day. The concierge kindly showed us a superior castle room and also a Woodland room. All are finished to a very high standard. Next time we'll try a Woodland room with patio overlooking the loch. We had a fantastic meal in the Brasserie, top quality food and service for a reasonable price. We look forward to returning when the spa has opened. All the staff were friendly and extremely attentive.

  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Hazel042
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
FonabCastleHotel, General Manager at Fonab Castle Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 19 August 2013

Thank you for taking the time to share your comments.

I am delighted you enjoyed your stay and found our bedrooms to be both beautiful and luxurious. A lot of thought went in to the design and choosing of the amenities and to know that its appreciated and noticed is very kind.

Next time you stay we will be delighted to offer you one of the Woodland Rooms with a patio - or a balcony if you prefer.

The Fonab Brasserie is being well received giving great food at value prices in a beautiful loch side location and your kind comments on the service is also much appreciated.

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Reviewed 17 August 2013

Stayed two nights on August 8th and 9th.
Brand new hotel, recently opened, high standard rooms that you usually expect from a city hotel, and not in Scotland countryside. Introductory rates for a double room including breakfast was well deserved.
Wonderful views of the dam and loch and the forest.
And what a service!!! The reception team was always wit ha warm welcoming smile, Danny at the concierge booked everything for us we needed, fishing trips, distillery tours etc. information about the attractions printed with maps, directions were supplied before we asked for.
The breakfast and dinner at the brasserie was delicious, an extensive menu served by an excellent team: Dener the Brazilian Restaurant Manager and all the others made us feel very comfortable and satisfied.
Large selection of malt whisky and gin at the lounge is also available.
Definitely recommended

Stayed: August 2013
1  Thank Yusuf Y
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
FonabCastleHotel, General Manager at Fonab Castle Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 19 August 2013

Thank you so much for taking the time to let us know your comments on Fonab Castle Hotel.

Again, we will pass on your comments to all the staff, especially the Front Desk Team about how you appreciated their attentive and friendly service and all the restaurant staff who made your brasserie experience so comfortable.

I am also really pleased that you took time to enjoy the Whisky and Gin bars - these really do seem to be becoming a great guest attraction.

I do hope its not long before we can welcome you back to Fonab castle and we get the chance to look after you again.

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Reviewed 16 August 2013

Our stay at Fonab Castle was fantastic, I'm only sad it ended so soon. My partner and I had booked the hotel as a treat for our anniversary and we weren't disappointed. We stayed in a Woodland room with a balcony overlooking the river - the view was incredible. We even ordered room service and ate our dinner out on the balcony despite it being a bit of a chilly evening, purely so we could enjoy the view whilst eating!

The standard of interiors in the room is very high with a large, extremely comfortable bed, HD flatscreen TV, modern bathroom, and even a Nespresso machine.

The staff we encountered during our stay were very friendly and helpful and service was great (from the concierge in particular)

We did almost get lost when driving to the hotel though as our sat nav took us to the wrong entrance to Foss Rd and we ended up having to do a 3 point turn on a single dirt track. My advice would be to just keep an eye out for the Fonab Castle sign so you get the right turn off!

Overall a great hotel in a superb location - definitely want to go back!

Room Tip: If you have a Woodland room request the river side
See more room tips
  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank lynney85
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
FonabCastleHotel, Manager at Fonab Castle Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 17 August 2013

Good afternoon.

Thank you for your kind words regarding the hotel and service. Our concierge team work hard to welcome and then look after all of our residents and guests during their time here at Fonab - something that we are very proud of.

We hope to see you again in the future!

best regards,

Gary White
Deputy General Manager

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Reviewed 15 August 2013

I agonised over whether I should give this the full 5 stars or not. Fonab is, without question, a beautiful hotel and my husband and I feel lucky to have taken advantage of the introductory offer we chanced upon. I am sure, when it is established, that it will be a little beyond our means!
So, what makes it 5 stars?

1) The best customer service we have ever, ever experienced. Mike, the delightful concierge giving cake shop tips and directions, the wonderfully friendly girls on reception and the Brasserie staff (outstanding) really made the whole experience for us. Dener, Matt and Marco are absolute assets to this hotel and after only 3 days, we felt part of the Fonab family- lovely. We have stayed in some fabulous hotels in New York, Paris etc but NONE of them have managed to achieve this level of customer service. The staff are genuine and are exceptionally good at their jobs.
2) The quality of the décor in the rooms. The hotel is brand spanking new and everything is clean, classy and of a high quality. We opted for a Woodland suite and had 2 bathrooms, living space and an enormous bed. We had two large balconies and although we were a little sad that we didn't have a view over the river, it was still lovely to have outside space like that. We loved the slippers, robes, water and the standard of the turn-down service was amazing. The cleaning staff do sterling work- I felt so guilty when, after dinner, we returned to our room to discover the clothes I had dumped on the floor had been neatly folded- thank you!
3) The location. Pitlochry is gorgeous, as is the surrounding area. We loved that it was just off the A9 and yet had beautiful views onto the river.
4) The jazzy lift! Wait until you see it!
5) The lounges. The castle has an amazingly restful guest lounge (complete with Whiskey and gin cabinets). Gary, an experienced, delightful member of staff knows his stuff with this!
6) The breakfast- wow!

So, why did I agonise over the 5 stars?

Sadly, we did have issues with noise. Our first night's sleep was entirely interrupted by the sound of a young child crying/chatting/shouting below us. The next morning, shattered and feeling tearful we went to reception to mention our problem. Thankfully the family below us were checking out that morning and I must compliment the staff on their concern and help. They offered us a room in the castle but, as the problem appeared to be resolving itself we opted to stay in the room we loved. Our room (601) is next door to a staff office and we did find, during the rest of our stay, that there was a lot of comings and goings; doors slamming and unnecessarily loud key card swipes throughout the night. We found it unusual to put an office next to a guest bedroom and, whilst we didn't have the issue of the screaming toddler, it still wasn't as restful as we might have expected from a hotel of such incredible calibre. Equally, if you are spending several hundred pounds per night, you don't expect to be woken several times by noise on the corridor. I hope, for Fonab's sake that the noise isn't an issue in the future as it is a truly special, wonderful hotel experience which, despite the noise issues we experienced, deserves its 5* status.

We would return again, although we would, I think, stay in the castle itself which we were told has walls so thick that they struggle with the wifi- PERFECT!

  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled as a couple
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6  Thank Luce007
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
FonabCastleHotel, General Manager at Fonab Castle Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 16 August 2013

Thank you so much for taking the time to give us your comments - we really appreciate it.

We are all delighted that you enjoyed your stay with us and your time in the Brasserie. We have been getting wonderful reviews for the George Lounge, where the whisky and gin bars are situated, as well as our Glas Lounge.

I was sorry to hear that your peace and quiet at night was disturbed by the other guests going in and out of their rooms or children - unfortunately this is not something that we have a control over. The office that you were next to was the General Manager's Office and was not frequented at night.

We would be delighted if you stayed again and chose one of our Castle bedrooms - they do indeed have thicker walls and we took this into consideration when installing our WiFi and so there is no issue with signal strength throughout the building.

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Additional Information about Fonab Castle Hotel

Address: Foss Road, Pitlochry PH16 5ND, Scotland
Phone Number:
Region: United Kingdom > Scotland > Perth and Kinross > Pitlochry
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Spa Hotel in Pitlochry
#4 Luxury Hotel in Pitlochry
Price Range: £171 - £331 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — Fonab Castle Hotel 5*
Number of rooms: 42
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Fonab Castle is a wonderful and historic building on the banks of Loch Faskally, by Pitlochry. It has been transformed by the Clark family into a fabulous and glamorous new 5 Star hotel. The hotel offers 26 bedrooms including 4 suites and a luxurious Penthouse suite (a number with loch views). The hotel brasserie and lounge provide outstanding vistas of the loch itself and Sandemans our fine dining restaurant is a tranquil setting for experiencing exquisite cuisine and fine wines. The Spa at Fonab is our brand new Spa offering a host of pampering and relaxation experiences. With Thermal Suite, Jacuzzi, swimming pool, treatment rooms and nail bar and pedicure. We look forward to welcoming you to a unique experience. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Fonab Castle Hotel Pitlochry, Scotland

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