, Ballantrae, Ayrshire.
Glenapp Castle is a simply magnificent castle hotel in Ayrshire, Scotland, built in 1870 in the Scottish baronial style with battlements, towers and soaring turrets. It is now owned by Paul and Poppy Szkiler, who have built a business that doesn't just turn a profit but which addresses local social and environmental needs.
Overlooking the Firth of Clyde, out to the iconic Ailsa Craig, the beautiful, secluded, and peaceful gardens of Glenapp Castle offer the perfect location to relax, recharge, and take afternoon tea. It will take some time to fully take in the sights, sounds, and scents of the thirty-six acres of castle grounds, as you stroll through carefully tended lawns and pathways, surrounded by a vast array of exotic plants that have been collected since Victorian days. There is a unique little wooded glen, a stunning walled garden and an Italian garden designed by Gertrude Jekyll.
The interiors of Glenapp Castle are just as glorious as the exterior. Fine dining in Glenapp Castle's award-winning restaurant is a true experience that surpasses just eating. Whether you choose the six course dining experience or the 'Taste of Glenapp' three course menu, there will be an exciting authenticity and flair to the cuisine. The gracious dining rooms make the perfect setting for a romantic meal as you to watch the sun set over Ailsa Craig, the Mull of Kintyre, and across the beautiful Ayrshire coastline. Alternatively, the former Victorian hot house provides informal dining surrounded by beautiful plant life.
From April to October the delightful Victorian Tearoom is opened up in the walled garden. With a light, bright homely touch, it becomes a relaxing way to while away an afternoon with friends or family, enjoying tea, coffee, beautifully crafted sandwiches, cream cakes, and, of course, scones with clotted cream and home-made jam. Perhaps, even add a glass of wine or two!
There are seventeen guest rooms at Glenapp Castle. All are individually designed and lavishly furnished and equipped to the same high standard. They are priced according to their location in the building, their views and their floor area. Many of the rooms on the first and second floors have superb sea views. The ground floor rooms which are equally beautiful and face the garden and woodlands are generally priced below the rooms with a sea view. All the rooms are filled with sumptuous fabrics, elegant antique and period furniture and lots of space.
You could happily pass a few days at Glenapp without ever venturing out of the castle grounds. As well as the many walks, there is the 150 foot Victorian glasshouse, an all-weather tennis court and a croquet lawn. The grounds are bounded on all sides by yet more woodland and open countryside to explore, and the beach at Ballantrae is only 2 kilometres away. The Glenapp Sea Safari is a must, with a private chef on board to prepare your meals and a professional crew to guide you around the Hebridean waters, it is truly an experience not to be missed. Other attractions in the area include Dumfries House, the Robert Burns Museum, Culzean and Lochnaw Castles, Lochninch and the Lochranza, Ardbeg and Laphroig distilleries.