Andy Mossack stays at this fine Scottish baronial country house and spends most of his stay in the Tower!
In most cases, if I were told I’m being sent to the tower in a 13th-century castle, I would have every reason to be concerned. Images of racks and various other implements of torture would spring to mind. Fortunately, the only thing that would make me die for when I arrived at the Turret Suite at Meldrum House Hotel was the sensational view.
Meldrum House Hotel sits in 240 manicured acres of prime Aberdeenshire countryside and over its 800 plus years of history, Knight Templars, earls, barons, lairds and ladies have passed across its threshold. It is a magnificent sight, its twin turrets bookending the main house, one of which I would become very familiar with. The main house shares accommodation choices with the Estate Rooms, a modern wing extension and The Stables, a rustic conversion with wooden beams oozing with character.
My Turret Suite had its own entrance adjacent to the lobby; an ancient set of stone steps leading up to circular entrance hall it shared with the Laird Suite. It was a glorious room. Sweeping views across the whole estate from every window including the highly-rated 18-hole Knights golf course. The huge main room had a king bed flanked on either side by two windowed alcoves, one of which sported a very welcome decanter of Glen Garioch whisky, the local distillery well within walking distance of the estate. The other held a wardrobe and plenty of space to store the luggage, leaving me able to wander unhindered across my vast tartan carpet admiring the period furniture and stretching out on the deep leather couch.
The bathroom was another journey of discovery. A large standalone bath along one wall, a deep sink adorned with high-end toiletries on the other. Then, tucked into the forward turret, a wet room capped with a powerful rainforest shower.
After a wee dram and a coffee sitting in my alcove watching the world go by, I took a walk out into the estate around the nearby lake. A couple of swans were busy shepherding their flock of cygnets around it, teaching them how to find food. I could have watched this live nature show for hours, but dinner was calling.
There are three dining options on offer at Meldrum House. Pineapple Grill & Seafood, the main restaurant, the more informal 1236@Cave Bar down in the original part of the house when it was used as a storeroom and larder, and outside on the lawn, three private dining domes each with their own lantern lighting and temperature controls for dining under the stars.
The fare on offer is all locally sourced – the meats from butchers in Aberdeen and the fish and seafood from Portsoy and Peterhead – so full marks for some green thinking too.
Pineapple’s fine dining was made all the sweeter by some excellent and attentive tableside service, particularly considering the restaurant was very busy that night. I also tried the Cave Bar the next night and considering this had a more of a clubby vibe about it clearly appealing to a younger crowd, the food and the service was equally impressive.
Despite its tranquil rural location, Meldrum House Hotel is a convenient base for getting out to visit Aberdeenshire’s castles and coast. Mind you, after spending time in the Turret Suite, you might not want to escape from the tower at all!
Tell me more about Meldrum House Hotel
Meldrum House Hotel, Oldmeldrum, Inverurie AB51 0AE
T: +44 (0)1651 872294 E: firstname.lastname@example.org
Rooms from £132 including breakfast.
Discover more about Aberdeenshire by visiting Visit Aberdeenshire Tourism