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“Wonderful setting; wonderful staff”

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Dornoch Castle Hotel
Ranked #2 of 6 Hotels in Dornoch
Certificate of Excellence
Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
38 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
“Wonderful setting; wonderful staff”
Reviewed 6 January 2014

We stayed in this hotel for two nights arriving late on the Friday and leaving on the Sunday morning. Although only there for a short time we felt very relaxed and refreshed from our break. Right from when we arrived the staff were helpful and friendly and that approach continued all the way through the weekend.
The food is excellent - local produce well sourced and beautifully cooked; a good wine list; and pleasant and well-informed staff. We're not whisky drinkers but were guided expertly through a tasting in the bar and feel more confident with our national drink as a result!
We enjoyed our stay so much we bought a voucher for a stay in this hotel for one of our hard-working daughters as a present - she'll enjoy the huge log fire in the bar and her boyfriend will enjoy the whisky!
We'd definitely go back.

Room Tip: Rooms on each side of the hotel are lovely. Although some may look onto the main road, Dornoch is a...
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  • Stayed December 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Alison M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
dornochcastle, Manager at Dornoch Castle Hotel, responded to this review, 23 April 2014
Dear Alison M,

Thank you for your review of your stay at the Dornoch Castle hotel.

We appreciate all of your comments and are pleased to hear that your stay was relaxing and refreshing. All of us aim to make our guests feel as comfortable and welcome as possible and hope our guests feel they are able to enjoy the atmosphere that the Castle has to offer during their stays.

The chefs are very pleased to hear your encouraging comments with regards to your evening meal too; they try very hard to maintain a high level of service and work even harder to ensure each meal is cooked to a great standard.

We are glad you were able to sample some of the extensive Whiskies that Simon and Phil could recommend also – they are packed with all sorts of knowledge!

Once again, thank you for all of your comments!

We hope you will return to the Dornoch Castle in the near future.

Best Wishes
All of the Staff at the Dornoch Castle hotel.
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731 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (141)
Date | Rating
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English first
Glasgow
Level Contributor
24 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 December 2013

We stayed at this hotel for 2 nights to attend a nearby wedding. Overall it was a really nice experience - good 3 course dinner on the Friday night; excellent breakfast on both mornings and friendly and helpful staff throughout our stay. The hotel is on the main road and is therefore in an excellent location in the town and easy to find.
The hotel is traditional rather than modern so some facilities could do with a bit of an upgrade (bath/shower/tv & internet) but the bar/restaurant benefits from this more traditional look/atmosphere. The bar has an exhaustive range of whiskies and the staff have an impressive knowledge of and enthusiasm for the subject.
My only real negative would be that the hotel obviously caters for a lot of tourists willing to pay a bit more for the proximity to the nearby golfing and so the value for money for the room is slightly questionable. We were staying in a superior garden room but I'm not very sure what the superior element was - it was a nice room but not that large or with any different facilities. The room and bed were comfortable and the view was nice though; just not great value for money at a superior room rate.
I would recommend this hotel and expect that it's a lovely place to stay in the summer as the garden looked lovely and the surrounding countryside is beautiful.

  • Stayed September 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
1 Thank Ginger088
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
dornochcastle, Front Office Manager at Dornoch Castle Hotel, responded to this review, 21 December 2013
Dear Ginger008,

Thank you for taking the time to leave a review of your recent stay at the Dornoch Castle Hotel.

We are constantly refurbishing our facilities whilst maintaining the true ‘castle feel’ that the hotel aims to achieve.

Our superior rooms come with additional touches that our standard rooms do not have such as complimentary sherry, chocolates, a wider selection of teas and coffees. Additionally no two superior rooms are the same; each room is decorated differently and will have a different layout and different features. Our castle superior rooms all have some original castle features.

I am glad to read that overall you enjoyed your stay with us and hope to see you back in the future.

Kind regards,
The Dornoch Castle Hotel.
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Evanton, United Kingdom
1 review
Reviewed 2 December 2013

I arranged a surprise overnight break for my partner and myself. It was a magical experience from the moment we stepped though the door. The staff are knowlegable, pleasant and polite and made us feel very welcome. The food was superb and we both felt very special nestled in the newly refurbished superior room. I would highly reccomend this hotel for anyone looking for a warm welcome in a hotel that other hotels should aim to emulate.

  • Stayed November 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Morven M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
dornochcastle, Front Office Manager at Dornoch Castle Hotel, responded to this review, 21 December 2013
Dear Morven M,

Thank you for your review of your recent stay with us.

We are delighted that you felt that you had a ‘magical experience’ and hopefully your partner was very pleased with his surprise break.

We aim to create a relaxed and homely atmosphere that will make all guests feel comfortable and it is lovely to hear that you had such a nice time. We have consistently earned 1 rosette for our food over a number of years and the chefs will be happy to hear that you enjoyed the food so much.

We hope to see you back with us in 2014.

Kind regards,
The Dornoch Castle Hotel.
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Cleckheaton, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
25 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 26 November 2013 via mobile

We stayed here on a mini moon tour of Scotland.

The food is very good and highly recommended. We stayed in a superior room which was a decent size and well appointed. Very comfortable bed.

The staff are all really friendly and helpful. Included in the break was a whisky tasting experience, the guy behind the bar was very knowledgable and made it really enjoyable for us.

The hotel is centrally located in Dornoch so convenient for locals shops and the beach.

  • Stayed November 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Michelle R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
dornochcastle, Front Office Manager at Dornoch Castle Hotel, responded to this review, 22 December 2013
Dear Michelle R,

Thank you for your kind review.

It is lovely to hear that you enjoyed your stay with us, especially since you included us as part of your mini moon tour of Scotland.

We have a vast selection of rare and unusual whiskies and Scotty, Simon and Philip are always happy to pass on their knowledge and recommendations on which malts to try.

All of our superior rooms are of a good size, are individually decorated and some have original castle features. We are delighted that you liked your room. I will also pass on your kind comments to our chefs regarding the food.

We hope to see you back with us in the near future.

Kind regards,
The Dornoch Castle Hotel
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Invergordon, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
10 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 November 2013

Went here last night on a first date for a meal. I've got to say I was very impressed right from the word go. The setting is lovely and as soon as you walk in you can tell this is going to be a treat. The waiter gave us the menus whilst we had a drink in the snug, which has a lovely warm fire which is perfect for the cold nights. Just before the meal is served the waiter took us through to the restaurant where a condiment of prawn cocktail and a biscuit thing (not quite sure but it was lovely) was waiting. Not long after this our main meal was served. I had the steak and would definitely recommend it. My date had the salmon and she really enjoyed it too. The waiters were very helpful and always topping up the water when needed without prompting. The restaurant area is lovely too, very spacious and lovely scottish decor. I would recommend this place to anyone as it's a real gem. Will definitely be going back.

  • Stayed November 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Sean M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
dornochcastle, Front Office Manager at Dornoch Castle Hotel, responded to this review, 22 December 2013
Dear Sean M,

Thank you for taking the time to leave a review of your recent dining experience with us.

I have passed your kind comments on to our chefs and waiting staff.

In the winter we always have the open fire lit in the bar which ensure that even on the coldest nights our bar is going to be warm and cosy.

We are delighted to hear that you will come back to dine with us again and we look forward to seeing you again soon.

Kind regards,
The Dornoch Castle Hotel
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Plymouth, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
24 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 November 2013

A visit for our 50th birthdays we took a two night "Champagne break" to include dinner). A long way from Plymouth but we took the scenic route after Glasgow and followed the A82. We arrived at the Hotel and were met by a friendly face at the bar who showed us to the receptionist who greeted us well and asked if we would like to book our evening meal in the restaurant. We were then asked if we would like our luggage carried up to our room as there were stairs. The room certainly had the wow factor with a carved four poster bed, large fireplace with log burner all ready to light (with instructions!!), Champagne on ice and a very large bathroom with heated floor and Jacuzzi bath. Just be aware that the toilet door frame will catch all but the smallest person out as it is low but fits in with the charm of the room. The view out of the windows were of the main street and across to the stunning cathedral. Dornoch itself really is a jewel of the Highlands.
Once freshened up we went down to the bar to have a pre dinner drink. The bar area is comfortable with an open fire and whisky menu!! The bar staff were friendly and welcoming and more than happy to educate any prospective single malt enthusiast. We were given our dinner menu from the friendly and helpful restaurant staff and left to ponder over a wonderful selection of food. The meals were excellent, well presented and It was a pleasure to enjoy food prepared by someone who clearly excels in his profession. The wine list compliments the food as does the friendly and attentive service. Breakfast was also to a high standard, fresh and locally sourced.

One small point, more pictures of the Old Court and Tower rooms are needed on your website, they are worth it!!

Thank you for a wonderful stay, We hope to be back in the future.

Mick and Paula
Plymouth
Devon

Room Tip: Splash out on the tower room for a touch of something special for a special person.
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  • Stayed October 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank h20mpp
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
dornochcastle, Front Office Manager at Dornoch Castle Hotel, responded to this review, 22 December 2013
Dear H20mpp,

Thank you for your very detailed review of your stay with us.

Our champagne break is proving to be very popular and arriving in your room to a bottle of champagne is always a great way to start your stay!

The Tower Room is one of our deluxe rooms and does have lovely views of the cathedral as well as all of the unique features that you mentioned. We are delighted to hear that you enjoyed the room.

Our staff always aim to be friendly and welcoming so that our guests feel like they are in their home away from home. It is lovely to hear that you found them to be friendly and helpful.

Our chefs have earned us 1 rosette with their interesting menu and tasty dishes for a number of years and continue to do so with us being awarded this again for 2013/2014.

Our staff often read our reviews and so will be delighted to read your comments.

We are looking at revamping our website in 2014 and plan to have many more pictures of all of our rooms.

We hope to welcome you back in the near future, despite the long drive!

Kind regards,
The Dornoch Castle Hotel
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Level Contributor
9 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 November 2013 via mobile

We stayed for the weekend,we stayed in room 12,(Golspie),room was very spacious,only fault I had with room was the noise from the water pipes,this was solved by using the complimentary cotton balls in the bathroom....lol,
Hotel was cosy with the log fire in the bar area.staff were very friendly and helpful.
We had a varied selection for breakfast,we opted for full Scottish and were not disappointed.
All in all a very enjoyable stay.

Stayed November 2013, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank Ken2510
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
dornochcastle, Front Office Manager at Dornoch Castle Hotel, responded to this review, 22 December 2013
Dear Ken2510,

Thank you for your review of your stay with us in November 2013.

It is nice to read that you liked your room and I have passed your comments on to the relevant people regarding the pipework. Room 12 is a large room with an adjoining room, perfect for families.

We ensure that the fire is always on in the bar over the winter to create a warm and welcoming environment. This is always appreciated by our guests on the colder winter nights.

We offer a large selection at breakfast including full cooked breakfast which is always a popular choice. Many of our guests comment on how lovey their breakfast was.

We are very pleased to hear that you enjoyed your stay with us and would hope to see you back with us in the future.

Kind regards,
The Dornoch Castle Hotel
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Additional Information about Dornoch Castle Hotel

Property: Dornoch Castle Hotel
Address: Castle Street, Dornoch IV25 3SD, Scotland
Region: United Kingdom > Scotland > Scottish Highlands > Caithness and Sutherland > Dornoch
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 6 Hotels in Dornoch
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:3 star — Dornoch Castle Hotel 3*
Number of rooms: 22
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Castle is located in the historic town of Dornoch across from the stunning 13th century Cathedral, boasting stunning views of the town. The central position of the hotel makes it ideal for exploring Dornoch, home to the world famous Royal Dornoch Golf Course, which overlooks the breath taking golden sand beach. Dornoch is also well situated for those looking to explore more of what the Highlands have to offer. The historic Castle is built on the site of the original Bishop’s Palace of St Gilbert, who founded the Cathedral in the early 13th century. The building eventually sold on and in 1947 became a hotel after some extensive work, which maintain much of the character of the Castle as a stately, historic and comfortable home. The Castle boasts a total of 22 en-suite bedrooms situated both within the original castle and the modern garden extension. There is a variety of room types available including; standard, superior, deluxe and our award winning Old Courtroom. Due to the castle’s layout each bedroom has its own special ambiance, great care has been taking in creating a distinctive character in each bedroom. The Castle's restaurant has retained an AA rosette standard, through the exceptional work from the chefs. The malt whisky selection is second to none and can be enjoyed in the cosy stone-lined whisky bar with the roaring fire to protect you from the Scottish winds, in the summer the walled garden is the perfect setting to relax during the long summer nights. Coming Summer 2016: The Dornoch Distillery will be opening soon on the grounds of the Dornoch Castle Hotel producing 'Old Style' Whisky and Hand Crafted Organic Gin from scratch. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Dornoch Castle Hotel Scotland

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