Douneside House

Tarland, Aberdeenshire

The feeling of a family home pervades this hotel in brimming gardens on the edge of the Cairngorms national park. More

Good Hotel Guide Review

The feeling of a family home pervades this hotel in brimming gardens on the edge of the Cairngorms national park. Bequeathed to the MacRobert Trust, the house was originally bought as a holiday retreat by Sir Alexander MacRobert, who transformed it in the Scottish Revival style. Lovely Edwardian interiors are filled with possessions and children’s portraits. Spacious bedrooms have period furnishings. More eclectic rooms are in cottages and apartments. There is a health club, a tennis court, children’s play park, and croquet on an infinity lawn. Trusted readers found their ground-floor apartment room ‘excellent for dogs, with a good drying porch and well-designed shower room’. Afternoon tea in the bar brought ‘tempting sweet flans’, while in the conservatory restaurant, David Butters’s use of local and home-grown ingredients, in such dishes as venison loin with poached brambles and beetroot jus, was ‘absolutely first rate – each course mouth-watering’. But ‘beware the muzak!’ Breakfast brings organic porridge with crystallised pistachios, lime honey and crème fraîche, peat-smoked haddock and a full vegan.

Hotel details


AB34 4UL


01339 881230


23. 9 in cottages, plus 4 apartments in Casa Memoria, 2 cottages suitable for disabled.


all year.


bar, wine bar, piano lounge, library, conservatory restaurant. in-room Smart TV (Freeview), wedding facilities, health centre (indoor pool, all-weather tennis court), 17-acre grounds, public areas wheelchair accessible, adapted toilet.

Background music

in bar and restaurant.


all ages welcomed.


allowed in cottages and apartments, not in main building.

Credit cards

MC, Visa.


per room B&B £174–£314. Set dinner £35–£45, tasting menu (Thurs–Sat) £80.

Other reviews

The Hotel Guru

Special offers

10% discount voucher

This hotel accepts discount vouchers which entitle readers to a 10% discount off their normal B&B rate for a single night’s stay. To take advantage of this offer, you must present the voucher at the time of booking.

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