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“Unbelievable value for money - a wonderful holiday.” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of Claymore Hotel

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Claymore Hotel
Ranked #2 of 6 Hotels in Arrochar
Durham
Level Contributor
17 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
“Unbelievable value for money - a wonderful holiday.”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 10 August 2010

A four day tour that turned out to be one of my best holidays ever. As others have said, the location is this hotel's best selling point. The views over Loch Long are breathtaking - especially with the sun shining. Old lawns sweep down to the roadside that flanks the loch.

Hotel staff are quite simply some of the best I have come across. We were greeted warmly by Duty Manager Elaine, who doubles as a great entertainments manager. The waiters are courteous, fast, friendly and polite - our Hungarian waiter, Bruno, looked after us wonderfully well. The food was excellent - portions were more than ample and everything was well -cooked. Some dishes were sublime - a divine smoked salmon mousse and a lovely beef in barbecue sauce were two dinner favourites.

Our room was kept spotlessly clean by unobtrusive cleaning staff. The room itself was newly decorated with a good view at the right angle. There was no shower and a rather high-sided bath, but a sturdy rail enabled extra leverage. Soap was provided, but bring your own shampoos and shower gels.

A nice touch for me was a decent sized mug provided with the tea and coffee, lots of drawer space and good mirrors on the wardrobes. The TV had good reception and the hairdryer worked well.

Our holiday included a trip to the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo. We had great seats with an excellent view across the arena - Loch Long being some distance from Edinburgh, this meant a late afternoon departure and a very late night, but it was so, so worth it. Although not local, our coach driver Bill, knew the area very well, which meant that a sudden road closure was not the problem it might have been to others. He also pointed out extra points of interest, all adding to the enjoyability.

The free bar was very well managed, perfectly drinkable wines, beers and spirits, with a lovely chilled rose wine available. Evening entertainment was enjoyable - Ian B., Saturday's singer - guitarist had a nice line in patter and quickly built a real rapport with the audience. He also has a CD on sale that made a nice little souvenir. If entertainment isn't your thing the lounge bar is very comfortable and cosy.

A truly Scottish touch was provided by local young Highland dancers on the Saturday evening -talented and enthusiastic youngsters who charmed us.
On our Sunday excursion we had the services of Dennis, a local driver, with a Mastermind like fund of information on the area. It was touches like this that made our bargain basement holiday really special.

Any downsides? This is an old building and although complying with all access requirements for wheelchair users, there are many, many stairs within the hotel. If you have mobility difficulties make that clear on your booking form. You will be responsible for getting your luggage to and from your room and it's quite a struggle if you are on the top floor with impaired mobility, like me.

Take a good insect repellent and cream for the odd midge bite as they are very active. Air fresheners now mask the musty smell referred to by others, and carpets looked very new in many parts of the building.

Our itinerary allowed for only short stops in the three towns we visited - Callender, Aberfoyle and Inverary, all of which seem to have the ubiquitous mill shops that sell cashmeres and woollens at bargain prices. Ignore these if you can and head for the small local shops that give a real flavour of the area.

We were very lucky with the weather, but do take sensible walking shoes and something waterproof - high heels and cobbles don't mix and the weather can change in an instant.
I'm not sure what those who were disappointed by this holiday expected- for the price paid, it was a fantastic few days.

  • Stayed August 2010
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank DurhamAnd
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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1,338 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (518)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Any
English first
Lancaster, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
26 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 10 August 2010

Claymore Hotel.
Bedrooms very sixties,ours was small and without a shower.Dirty wall paper.We thought we had been bitten by insects near the Loch, until we got hom then found,our bodies were covered in bites,bed bugs or fleas! If we turned over in bed we nearly fell out the mattress dipped away at each side .
Food was good.Most staff really nice
If you are expecting a lift,there isn't one,and you carry your own lugage.
Entertainment rubbish.
Plus side our coach driver was brilliant and we saw a lot of Scotland.Be prepared to spend a lot of time travelling.
Ok its cheap.

  • Stayed August 2010
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank smithharrison
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Kingston-upon-Hull, United Kingdom
1 review
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 8 August 2010

hotel building a bit tired rooms adequate bathrooms need updating (no Shower, but we were given push on shower attachment) staff and service inpeccable food was good free bar excellent
Nothing was too much trouble for the staff, who were very helpful and very quick with service. The entertainment was adequate, we only stayed 2 nights, but will be looking to extend our stay next time thank you very much and well done National Holidays

  • Stayed August 2010, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank she-pete
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
York, United Kingdom
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 7 August 2010

Just returned from the 5-day trip to the Claymore. Well worth a visit, lovely meals (don't believe other reviews, there was plenty to eat and we like our food!) The service was excellent and very swift. The rooms were standard 2 star quality but very comfy beds. Entertainment a bit dodgy apart from Tuesday nights comedian who was brilliant! The dining room, bar lounge and concert room are great, as is the spectacular views. Look out for the resident cats! If anything it was the travelling daily that got wearisome, with very short stoppages at each destination and too long spent on the coach. Loved the 3 hour happy hour.

  • Stayed August 2010, travelled with family
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank toadotter
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
yorkshire
Level Contributor
31 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 August 2010

we have just returned from national holidays beautiful scotland inclusive trip, what a lovely time we had.
we got picked up at wakefield at 7-20 ( on time ) then after picking up in dewsbury and leeds we were on our way. we arrived at the hotel at 3-30pm after a couple of comfort stops. the hotel is lovely old building overlooking the beautiful loch long, we where lucky enough to have a '' room with a view ''. the hotel decor is a bit tired and dated but it is spotlessly clean, and the food was reasonable i wouldn't hesitate to stay there again.
the places you visit on the excursions are ok and some of them you don't really have time to do much, but the scenery on the drive is some of the best i have ever seen, in one word '' SPECTACULOR ''.
there is a real ale pub just 10 mins walk from the hotel, turn left at the bottom of the drive, we also tried the waverly hotel in callender, had a lovely meal and a good drink of real ale.
to sum up i would like to say luxury it is not, but value fo money it certainly is, if you are thinking of doing this trip, do it and enjoy it, we did and so did the rest of our party.

  • Stayed July 2010, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank looseone
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Kingston-upon-Hull, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
98 reviews
31 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 88 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 July 2010

We decided to book a short trip during a few days I had off, not bothered where, but we wanted National Coach Holidays as we have found them to be good value for money. So this hotel was on the list and having never been to this area of Scotland before we booked. We booked one day and travelled the next so it was a spur of the moment thing as we waited for our bus at 8am.

The bus, not a National coach but a firm doing work for National, was right on time and it wasn't long before we were picking up more people then heading north. We had a few stop off's and arrived at the Claymore at about 4pm.
We were greeted by the hotel Manager who came on the coach to give us a few bits of information, meal times, that type of thing.

Then it was collect your room key and have a chance to freshen up. The first thing to say is that you are on the edge of Loch Long, mountains are in front of you and it is remote.
We put our cases in our room then went for a walk around the immediate area, and basically there was a Church, pub, and a couple of shops within walking distance of the hotel, and that was more or less it.

We came back to our room to freshen up, and our room was basic but had most of the required facillities. What there wasn't in the room could be aquired from the reception, as there were some rudimentary notes on the history of the hotel and other information on some sheets of paper in the top draw of the bedside cabinet.

The room was reasonably clean and tidy with fresh towels, and a good supply of tea, coffee, milk, sugar, cups and saucers, and kettle. A small tv with half a dozen channels and a novelty I haven't seen before, a radio with built in alarm clock, a nice touch. A room telephone was also available, calls costs on the pieces of paper I mentioned.
We were positioned round the side of the hotel so our view was obscured by trees, but we could just see Loch Long.

The weather was damp, the mist came and went from the tops of the mountains and if you like solitude then this is the place to be. Not that the hotel itself was all that quiet, we were not the only coach party there so quite a few people about and come meal times the place was buzzing.
Meal times, again on those information sheets, were generous and the restaraunt was quite busy from the word go.

What can I say about the food? In a word, splendid, a choice was available each night, served with curtious efficiency by the waiters and waitresses. In fact the whole meal experience, breakfast and evening meal, was very good. Copious amounts of tea and toast should you require at breakfast, and all done with good manners.

Our trip included a 'free' 3hr bar and seeing as there was nowhere else for you to go, other than the one pub down the road, the hotel bar was quite a busy place. There was also a concert room, entertainment on both nights we were there, inevitably Elvis was in the building.
We gave this a miss, not because we didn't like Elvis, but we were quite comfortable where we were.

I'm not sure how many patrons were in these rooms on a night but as you can imagine, there was a queue for the 'free' bar most of the time, but the bar staff, as with other members of staff, were well up to the task and no one was waiting too long for their drinks. The 'free' bar was from 7:30pm to 10:30pm and finished promptly on time, the manager had said on our arrival that no more than 2 drinks per person at a time, so no stocking up on your booze, which everyone seemed to adhere too.

After your evening in the bar it was time for bed, our beds were comfortable with no complaints, the only thing, as with most hotel rooms, noise travels through the walls quite easily but it was never a problem.
The towels, and complemantary soap were fine, and the bath was a full size one, we didn't have a shower but a shower attachement could be obtained from reception.

One other thing to point out is that the rooms are spread over a wide area, so you may have to navigate a maze of corridors to find your room. Room numbers were well posted and once found it didn't take long to navigate back to the reception.
Like I have said our trip was a spur of the moment thing and yet again National Coaches have served up a very good value for money trip with this hotel.

Bear in mind, it is remote, and the weather made the surrounding area bleak at times, and this is during summer. Mist/fog came and went at various times, but the area is tranquil and if that is on your list of requirements then a trip to the Claymore is worth considering.
Our trip was classed as a 3 day trip but there are longer trips I believe, and we did get to see quite a bit of this part of Scotland including the more famous Loch Lomond.

All in all well worth the money and a special mention of our jolly coach driver, Andy, pleasant throughout, like I have said, not a National coach but someone called Coopers.
Another point I would like to make is that, if you add on the time you are sight seeing, which you have to get too in the coach, then you do spend a lot of time on board travelling like we did, from Yorkshire as well as getting around the Highlands and Lowlands of Scotland, quite a bit of your 3 day trip.

  • Stayed July 2010, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Globalgeek
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Redcar, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 July 2010

Having been brought up in the west of Scotland, it is hard to be totally objective about a hotel in Arrochar but here goes ........... We departed from Middlesbrough bus station with National Holidays & a very friendly & knowledgeable driver behind the wheel called Trevor on the saturday morning for our four day & three night excursion. Stopping off at Gretna Green & Helensburgh on the way & eventually arriving at the Claymore about 4pm. The grounds & hotel are impressive & the views of Loch Long are superb. We were greeted by the hotel manager and the coach party all got the keys to their rooms. The rooms are a bit outdated and the sound proofing not the best, although considering the victorian buiding is over 300 years old it quite understandable. My parents came up from Glasgow and we all had a nice meal in the hotel restaurant. The waiters and staff (mainly Polish) really earn their crust & cannot do enough for you. The free bar which last for three hours 7.30pm - 10.30pm is good and the queues are not as bad as some have made it out to be & you wait about 10 minutes to get served. You get a choice of most drinks, which are listed at the bar but not the premium brands like Guiness, Stella Artois or any branded spirits like Bells, Smirnoff or Gordon's. The entertainment is fine, but not my type of music or genre. The trips you on are good and as long as it's dry then, you can enjoy all of the Scottish charm & beauty. On the sunday we went on the Loch Lomond cruise from Tarbert which was good, followed by a short break at the Lomond shopping arcade for a tea break which was ok, then onto Callander for lunch which is a bonny place, then back to Luss in Loch Lomond which is pretty & then back to the Claymore hotel about 4.30pm. Our next days journey started at Dunoon, which is a bit run down and in need of some TLC & then back to Inveraray which is a pretty Georgian town will alot of character and enjoyed our lunch at the George hotel on the high street & then finally back to the Claymore about 4pm. The food & service in the hotel is spot on with a wide & varied menu and for the money you pay for the package, you can have little to complain about. We set off home after breakfast from the Claymore just after 9am and stopped off at Moffat on the way home for lunch and a short break at the Scotch Corner & although there was a delay on the M74 at Beattock due to a serious accident, we all arrived home safely in Middlesbrough hust before 4pm.

To summarise our journey & what we got for £159 -

Nice travel to and from Middlesbrough to Arrochar
Three nights basic accommodation
Nine hours free bar over three days
Three nights ok enterainment
Six nice meals over four days
Six nice locations over two days

If anyone looks at that the above & thinks that, it doesn't look like good value for money then, I would be totally mystified. Apart from the unpredictable Scottish Weather & a few midges, the package deal & surrounding scenery is superb & I would recommend this trip to anyone who wishes to see a bit of Scotland. The only thing I would like to see is the Bay Hotel Group investing a few quid in the rooms, maybe a new shower & mattress and a fresh lick of paint on the walls. They could easily fund this by charging an extra £5 -£10 per person on the package price, which I'm sure the majority of folk wouldn't mind paying for a more modern room.

Mark Boyle

  • Stayed July 2010, travelled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank product-review
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Claymore Hotel

Property: Claymore Hotel
Address: Arrochar | G83 7BB, Arrochar, Loch Lomond and The Trossachs National Park G83 7BB, Scotland
Phone Number:
Region: United Kingdom > Scotland > Loch Lomond and The Trossachs National Park > Arrochar
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Restaurant Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 6 Hotels in Arrochar
Number of rooms: 96
Also Known As:
Claymore Hotel Arrochar, Scotland

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