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Issue 64 - Royally Enjoyable

Scotland Magazine Issue 64
August 2012


This article is 6 years old and some information provided may be time sensitive. Please check all details of events, tours, opening times and other information before travelling or making arrangements.

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Royally Enjoyable

Perth was this year granted city status by The Queen as part of her Diamond Jubilee celebrations. Scotland's fair city, which of course gave its name to a now much larger city on the west of Australia, is the county town of Perthshire, one of the country's loveliest and most popular holiday pursuit areas. In this edition we look at some of the current best hotels and guest houses in region.

1. Parklands Hotel, Perth

This townhouse hotel has a terrace garden and indeed parkland setting with easy parking and perfect convenience for the rail station. Winner of Perth Hotel of the Year 2012 this 4-star option has been fully redesigned over the past year and now shows off a confident and stylish contemporary décor planned with great care by owners Penny and Scott Edwards. Long popular with both private and business guests thanks to the combination of practicality, location and good food, Parklands now offers more than a bit of pzazz. Delicious dining is founded on depth of experience, guests can eat either in the awardwinning No 1 The Bank bistro or the acclaimed 63 @ Parklands where Michelin guide-rated chef Graeme Pallister oversees superior cuisine based largely on outstanding Perthshire sourced produce. Tel: +44 (0)1738 622451

2. Murrayshall House Hotel & Golf Courses, Scone near Perth

A short drive from Perth is one of the county’s leading rural hotel choices – a most Scottish country house with a brace of excellent 18-hole golf courses and all the facilities a golfer might need. Set amongst 350 acres of mature woodlands planted around four centuries ago, the beautiful setting of Murrayshall, which itself dates back in part to 1664, gives real breathing space. There are 41 bedrooms including 16 suites; décor is traditionally comfortable and attractive; there are plenty of reminders that you’re in Scotland, in a place with a past. The elegant Old Masters restaurant has large windows looking out over the grounds and holds 2 AA rosettes while Stutts bar offers informal dining for walkers, golfers and families. Overall it’s a charming country choice, yet near the city. Telephone +44 (01)738 551171

3. New Country Hotel, Perth

This is a rather unusual place as it combines standard 3-star rooms with a class-leading, contemporary dining experience. The New County is right in the city centre and generally has easy parking adjacent. The foyer is modern and smart with the comfortable Café 22 lounge area on one side, perfect for a coffee while using the free wi-fi. To the other side is the recently refreshed Gavin’s bistro. This relaxed, traditional pub-like space serves top-quality, fresh, informal meals. Upstairs are the fresh and relatively simple bedrooms… but let’s stay on the ground floor where the completely different-feeling Opus One shines brightly as a stylish, urbane restaurant. Rising Star Young Chef 2012 Rory Lovie serves modern cuisine bursting with flavour and style. Design co-ordinated Opus bedrooms are on the way, too, we hear. Telephone +44 (0)1738 623355

4. Ballanthie House Hotel, Kinclaven near Perth

A turreted and charming manor on the banks of the River Tay and sitting in its own working estate, Ballathie has open fires, gracious public rooms and a sense of history. Friendly staff will look after you. Choose from a wide range of room types – from rooms for anglers to four poster rooms for romance. The chef received an award this year so you can expect good quality dining at lunch and dinner. Country weddings are occasionally held here. Tel: +44 (0)1250 883268

5. East Haugh Country House Hotel, By Pitlochry

Hugely popular with anglers who can fish the hotel’s own exclusive and lengthy beat on the River Tay – and use the hotel’s comfortable fishing ‘hut’ – East Haugh has again won the Scottish Fishing Hotel of the Year title. But if you don’t like to cast or spin, the hotel has other lures. The owners have a long-established reputation for providing excellent and delicious food whether in the bar with its log fire or the Two Sisters restaurant. Telephone +44 (0)1796 473121

6. Tigh na Leigh, Alyth near Blairgowrie

A charming garden and quaint village setting for this old house with its contemporary and stylish interior makes for interesting contracts and comfort. It was winner this year of the Guest House Dining Award in recognition of the creative and beautiful evening meals served in the conservatory-like dining room. It has five bedrooms; each stylish and the poshest has a large four poster bed. This B&B’s details ought to make many hotel blush. Telephone +44 (0)1828 632372

7. Killiecrankie House Hotel, Near Pitlochry

The plunging Pass of Killiecrankie is famed for a battle long ago in Scotia’s turbulent past; nowadays peace reigns as even the traffic by-passes the wooded spot. This small country hotel offers impeccable taste and happy comforts thanks to experienced ownership. The Good Hotel Guide chose it as their hotel of the year for Scotland in 2011 and this year came awards from us for Henrietta Fergusson’s peerless hospitality and chef Mark Easton’s flavourful real food. Telephone +44 (0)1796 473220

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