Our favourite luxury five-star Scottish hotel packages for winter staycations
Don’t despair, when you look at your annual leave and discover you’ve still got a couple of days left. Perhaps you should’ve taken them when it was sunny, but you can still make the most of the chilly dregs of 2023 and visit one of these Scottish hotels. This is our selection of luxury packages that offer romance, Hogmanay celebrations, stilt walkers, adventure and a wee nip of whisky.
Situated by the River Ness, this five-star hotel is at its best in winter. It has lots of packages available at this time of year, but our favourite is the Spirit and Spice Experience. It includes a Whisky Food Safari Experience in the Cairngorms with author of 56 cookbooks, Ghillie Basan, two nights’ accommodation for two in a king or twin room, a glass of Champers on arrival, breakfast and dinner for two in their Torrish restaurant. Valid for stays before April 30 2024, it starts from £555 per guest based on two sharing. From May, this bumps up to £785, so make sure that the early bird catches the dram.
12 Ness Walk, Inverness (01463 214 215, www.nesswalk.com)
We’d love to escape our freezing homes to try the Coorie Up experience at this five-star hotel. It includes two nights bed and breakfast, £40pp towards dinner at 1892 on the Loch, an ishga self care kit (includes Body Scrub, Body Oil, Shampoo and Body Bar) a Highland Soap Luxury Candle, a bottle of red wine from de Burgh Wine Merchants and two locally-distilled whisky miniatures from £748 per room.
Foss Road, Pitlochry (01796 470140, www.fonabcastlehotel.com)
Discover that there’s more to the Milky Way than just chocolate at the four-star Duisdale House on Skye. It’s created some Dark Skye Romance packages to encourage guests to stargaze in their area, where the absence of light pollution makes the galaxy especially clear and twinkly. These are available until March 28 and include two nights bed and breakfast for two, arrival hot chocolate with whisky or Baileys, a welcome gift, a two course dinner in the hotel’s two course rosette restaurant on the first night, a private 30 minute hot tub session and late 1pm checkout. Prices start from £244pp.
Aird of Sleat (01470 373737, www.skyehotel.co.uk)
After a long wait, this five-star walnut whip of a hotel is opening its doors on November 14. Get in there for Hogmanay with their New Year, New Horizons package. It includes bed and breakfast on the night of December 31, dinner and a glass of Champagne on arrival at their restaurant Sushisamba, with prices starting from £1074 for their Wonderful King Room. See the website for more details.
FAIRMONT ST ANDREWS
It’s not going to be your average Hogmanay at this five-star hotel. They’re offering a package that includes dinner for two, as well as watching the Circus of Illusion, who will be visiting them before the bells, with acrobats, stilt walkers, illusionists and more. Following the show, there will be a firework display outside the Atrium and Moet & Chandon Champagne will be served, all for £830 per room. It beats staying in to watch Jools Holland on the gogglebox.
(01334 837000, www.fairmont.com)
All-inclusive holidays are usually associated with Spanish resorts. However, apparently there’s now a demand for this type of holiday from luxury travellers to Scotland. At this five-star Wester Ross hotel, they’re offering an All-Inclusive Escape, which is available until the end of March 2024. For £2890 for three nights for two people, it includes deluxe room accommodation in the main hotel, breakfast, lunch and dinners (in their restaurants Bo & Muc and 1887) every day, unlimited house drinks, a Torridon Afternoon Tea, bike hire for a day and a guided walk with Torridon Outdoors. See T&Cs online.
Annat by Achnasheen (01445 791 242, www.thetorridon.com)
You’ll feel very cosy in this townhouse hotel, which is just a short walk to Byres Road and all its Christmas shopping delights. They’re currently offering a Sweet Temptations package, which includes bed and breakfast and afternoon tea with Champagne, all from £223 for two people. The tea includes sandwiches with fillings such as Loch Fyne smoked salmon, scones with clotted cream and jam, pastries and cakes. There might even be a mince pie in the mix.
1 Devonshire Gardens (0141 378 0385, www.hotelduvin.com)
Find out why this lovely Port Appin retreat, on the shores of Loch Linnhe, recently bagged National Restaurant of the Year at the Hotels of the Year Scotland Awards 2023-24. Available from the beginning of December until the end of February 2024, Sunday to Thursday, a midweek Wee Winter Break there starts from £215 for a Cliff Facing Room or £480 for a Sea View Room on a bed and breakfast basis for three nights. Book your spot in the restaurant separately. The current a la carte menu includes an Arnold Bennett Mull Cheddar souffle with Finnan haddie and chive.
Port Appin (01631 730302, www.pierhousehotel.co.uk)
According to the people at this five-star Scottish Borders hotel, you can save over £500 if you buy their online Three Night Winter Escape gift voucher. It’s valid until March 2024, and costs £870, which includes a stay for two in an Estate King Room with a three course dinner and paired wines on one evening, afternoon tea, a fire pit experience (think hot chocolate and a dram, marshmallows and blankets) and a whisky tasting.
Heiton by Kelso (01573 450331, www.schlosshotel-roxburghe.com)
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