Great Places to Stay
- Kenmore Hotel, Perthshire
The Kenmore Hotel is a most charming and unique place to stay for a quiet retreat, amidst beautiful scenery, or for an active sporting holiday for all the family. Superb traditional meals using fresh local produce, an historic setting and all home comforts. Travel writer Vivien Devlin knows it well.
Scotland's Oldest Inn
Kenmore is a most perfect and rather unusual Scottish village, on the edge of Loch Tay, with its central square dominated by the church at the far end, and surrounded by charming white-washed cottages. As you drive in you will see the very attractive white-washed Kenmore Hotel in front of you, with its traditional gable roof and attic dormer windows. Established in 1572, it is regarded as Scotland's oldest Inn. The story goes that Sir Colin Campbell of Breadalbane granted a lease to his servant Hay and his wife Christian to run their "honest hostelrie". The site of the Inn was an important crossing point where accommodation and refreshments were often required by travellers. One such visitor was Robert Burns."The Tay, meand'ring, sweet in infant pride,
The Palace, rising on its verdant side".
From "Verses written with a pencil over the chimney piece in the parlour of the Inn at Kenmore", 1787.
To this day there is a charming, cosy little parlour, the Poet's Bar, preserved in his honour, with framed portraits and this poem about the Tay on the mantelpiece, where it was composed. Burns is reputed to have been enthralled by the beauty of the village and its delightful setting beside the humped back bridge on the banks of the Tay. With log fires burning and original blackened oak beams, this is highly recommended for a relaxing lunch, afternoon tea, or an evening pint or dram. On a day out recently we stopped by for a pub lunch and thoroughly enjoyed freshly made sandwiches, served with very friendly service. There is also the bright and spacious refurbished Taymouth Restaurant for lunch and dinner with fabulous views over the river at the back of the hotel.
As a child my family came to stay at the Kenmore Hotel every year during the Easter holidays. This is a perfect family hotel, where we used to enjoy boating on the loch, rowing on the river (the hotel has its own dinghies), horse-riding, golf and great country walks with the dog. Fishing of course is the king of sports here and I remember guests would bring back their enormous catch which would be laid out proudly in the hall for the residents to admire - before being taken to the kitchen to be prepared by the chef for dinner. The salmon season opens on January 15th with a rousing ceremony, by pouring a quaich of whisky over the prow of the first boat to wish the fishermen, "Tight Lines".
The hotel has 40 bedrooms, all tastefully decorated with rich warm colours and tartan fabrics, each room with its own character and design due to the period architecture and original features of this ancient inn. Modern conveniences have of course been added, with satellite TV and en-suite bathrooms. There are large family rooms and the Veranda Room has its own jacuzzi bathroom for your own private Spa treatment and relaxation.
Where to Find the Kenmore Hotel
Kenmore is six miles south-west of Aberfeldy on the A827, at the northern end of Loch Tay. The postal address is Kenmore Hotel, The Square, Kenmore, Perthshire PH15 2NU. Their e-mail address is email@example.com and their Web site is www.kenmorehotel.com. Prices (at end 2001) for Double room: Bed and Breakfast - £40-£45; Dinner, Bed and Breakfast - £56-£70 per person. Children sharing parents' room: £10 Bed and Breakfast; Dinner , Bed and Breakfast: £30. There are special mid-week breaks, golf (the Taymouth Castle course is nearby) and fishing packages.
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