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“Superb hotel. Our second stay and there will be a third!”
Review of Glenapp Castle

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Glenapp Castle
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Ballantrae
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 28 June 2011

Superb country hotel in beautiful grounds with views out to sea and towards the Ailsa Craig.
Our room was splendid as indeed were all the public areas.

Service is of the standard that one demands in such a venue.Personal service is the word.

We were made welcome and just chilled out as it were our own home.

Luxury and service justifies the high price.

  • Stayed: October 2010, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank ScottishVoyageur
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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252 - 258 of 313 reviews

Reviewed 14 June 2011

We spent 3 nights at Glenapp and wished we had planned a longer stay. It is truly an exceptional experience. The Castle isn't as old as it looks (circa 1870), but it has the ambience of a property from a long bygone time. Our bedroom was huge, with its own separate sitting room. The windows opened to allow the cool evening breezes from the Irish Sea to circulate and create, with a most comfortable king-size bed, near-perfect sleeping conditions. Warmth could be adjusted by judicious use of the in-room gas heater, which was switched off centrally at 2 am each morning.
Apart from its extensive grounds, fastidiously maintained, and full of Summer blooms, the highlight of the Glenapp experience is mealtime, especially dinner. Adam Stokes and his small team create fabulously interesting food, much of it sourced locally. The 12 or so cheeses are all Scottish, and of the highest quality. Of the 18 dinner courses that we ate (the menu changed daily), only 1 was less than memorable, a fantastic strike rate. Indeed the property is well worth a visit for its food alone.
For its aesthetic appeal and fine food, the castle scores at the top end of the range. What makes it truly remarkable is the warmth of the welcome, the advertence to detail, and the wonderful service provided by John, Hugh and the team. Every staff member we met showed genuine pride in their work, were respectful and were most informative, whether about the origins of a particular single malt whisky (I recall there are around 50 on the menu), Scottish history, the property itself, or things to do in the area. Cleaning of rooms was synchronised precisely with breakfast, and our late afternoon drinks, so there was no intrusion at all into our privacy.
The castle is not easy to find, though the instructions we received when we booked were clear and accurate. Although the nearby village of Ballantrae doesn't have a lot to interest tourists, the west coast between Ballantrae and Ayr has much to see and do. Turnberry is south of Ayr, and the clubhouse is open to the public. Culzean Castle, a wonderful Trust property, is nearby and demands a visit. The coastal road between Turnberry and Ayr is spectacular, and in good condition.
Do yourself a favour and visit this wonderful property. I doubt I will ever stay in a better place, and that is saying something, given the extensive nature of both my business and personal travel. There was never a chance that the TV would be activated!

  • Stayed: June 2011, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank greenstOat24
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 June 2011

Just a one night stay returning from a golfing holiday in Ayrshire - wish it could have been longer. Beautiful room in a beautiful hotel set in beautiful gardens, what more could we want? Well the food of course! Went for the 3 course meal with matched wines, truely delicious, though couldn't resist it adding an extra cheese course. A delightful stay and one we would love to repeat in the future.

Stayed: May 2011, travelled as a couple
Thank TShYorks
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 April 2011

We have travelled on the Queen Mary and the Orient Express to Venice, both of which were fabulous, but Glenapp Castle is truly amazing. The food, wow what food - Adam Stokes is truly a genius. All the staff were warm, friendly and very very helpful. The whole ombience of the place was special. Thanks for making our 30th wedding anniversary something to remember. We will be back.

  • Stayed: April 2011, travelled as a couple
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Thank macsharp
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 January 2011

We stayed here for 3 nights over New Year (30th Dec-2nd Jan) and it was just fantastic!
The Castle has 17 rooms/suites, all of which were full over our stay, but yet it never felt busy or crowded.

Our room (Garleffin) was wonderful, we were very pleased with our choice as there are no other adjoining guest rooms so we had windows both sides of the room with views out across the gardens on one side, and across the car park, front gates and onto the woodland beyond.
The bed was huge and very comfortable! The gas fire was a really nice feature, it was so lovely to be able to order in tea and cakes and sit in front of the fire after an afternoon walk.
The room does have a small bathroom which they clearly state on their website, for us it wasn’t a problem, but if you take lots of makeup/toiletries there isn’t much space for them in there (the window ledge and a very small vanity shelf only). Plenty of hot water and a good power shower.

The staff here are polite, friendly and efficient, everything you would expect from a Relais & Chateaux and so much more. Over the 3 nights we were there, the high standard of service they continually provided always amazed me, they were fantastic.

The Castle has a communal drawing room where pre dinner drinks and canapés were served. With plenty of comfy sofas and chairs, an open fire it was the ideal place to mingle with the other guests before dinner or after.

The food was amazing, and we were surprised that the Head Chef Adam Stokes doesn’t have a much higher award for his food. We have eaten at places like Midsummer Common and Waterside Inn (both are Michelin starred restaurants) and while Adam has 3 AA Rosettes we think he deserves far more.
Needless to say 6 incredible gourmet courses each night were served and each surpassed the other in terms of taste, aesthetics and culinary experience.
With dishes of fresh seafood, local game or beef followed by local cheeses and heavenly puddings we were exceptionally well fed!
They also have a superb wine list and plenty of whiskies to try! My only regret was not finding out where we could purchase a bottle or two before heading home.

All in all we had a truly amazing New Years break at Glenapp Castle, and would love to return!

  • Stayed: January 2011, travelled as a couple
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Thank grubs-and-tubs
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 December 2010

We have just returned from Glenapp Castle after staying for a night to celebrate my husbands 30th birthday. We only travelled 45mins to get to the castle to it is fairly local to us.
We arrived to a snow covered castle and grounds which made the castle look even more spectacular. The staff were very friendly and welcoming and couldn't do more to help.
The evening meal was outstanding, they were happy to accommodate my fussy eating and the food that was served was beautiful.
We stayed in a suite...the McDonald I think...this was expensive but as it was a special occasion we treated ourselves.
There are cheaper rooms which we would stay in next time as they are still huge. We will definitely be going back and will be recommending the restaurant to everyone.

  • Stayed: December 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank hecticlifeof3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 December 2010

We went for Lunch..£35 per head....spent 4 wonderful hours. Fantastic food...could not fault anything. Relaxing..very professional but informal staff....felt home from home, nothing too much trouble.
Would love to stay the night sometime ..for a special occasion....very expensive.

  • Stayed: November 2010, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank satellina
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Glenapp Castle

Address: Ballantrae KA26 0NZ, Scotland
Region: United Kingdom > Scotland > Ayrshire > South Ayrshire > Ballantrae
Amenities:
Business Centre with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Ballantrae
Price Range: £233 - £380 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — Glenapp Castle 5*
Number of rooms: 17
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Beautiful Scots Baronial castle set in 36 acres of stunning gardens and woodland overlooking the Ayrshire coastline and out to Ailsa Craig, the Isle of Arran and Mull of Kintyre. The castle is Scotland's highest rated Country House Hotel with 5 AA Red Stars and 4 AA Rosettes, 5 VisitScotland Gold Stars, EatScotland Gold Award and a Michelin Star. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Glenapp Castle Ballantrae, Scotland
Glenapp Castle Hotel Ballantrae

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