After our stay at KilieHuntly house, we had a wonderful road trip around the West highlands. The scenery was just totally amazing and we didn’t see the time go by. We drove for about two and a half hours and just watching the countryside outside the car was fantastic. We stopped a couple of times, walked around, and I took lots of photos. You can see some of them in the gallery above. We were just utterly amazed.
We then made our way down to the Gleneagles hotel, which is very, very famous but I didn’t know exactly what to expect. My concerns were whether the size of the place would be too much.
My verdict is that if you are an outdoors person and if you like a lot of things to be organized for you, it’s a great hotel. It didn’t really win me over because it lacked a sense of style and individuality.
What we liked
What could be improved
What to expect at Gleneagles hotel
The staff is all very nice and professional and the food actually in all the restaurants is very good. And as I said, there are lots of activities to choose from, but it is really a big hotel. So if you want a resort with lots to do, and great service, that’s a great place.
Gleneagles has 232 bedrooms. No wonder that I found it quite big and impersonal!
You have different categories of course. We were in an estate room. I didn’t like the first one they gave us, so I asked to change. They were absolutely gracious about this and showed me three other rooms and we moved to one that had a better sense of space. The view wasn’t very different, but at least the space was bigger.
The best thing at Gleneagles is Andrew Fairlie’s restaurant
Gleneagles has several restaurants that you can have dinner at. We ate the first night at Andrew, Fairlie’s restaurant, which is the only two Michelin Star restaurant in Scotland, and it was absolutely delicious.
They normally don’t admit children, but I had asked them beforehand by email, whether they would accept a Mademoiselle telling them that she’s used to this kind of places. They accepted and on the night they didn’t make any fuss about it and she was delighted with her choices. She chose veal and a chocolate dessert.
I went for the very famous smoked lobster with lime butter, which was delicious. Mr Bigg had scallops. We then shared the special of the day, wild hare with ceps and source and again, really, really good.
The desserts were quite sensational as well. My pear with speculos ice cream was light and full of flavour, Mademoiselle’s chocolate dessert was to die for. So I highly recommend having dinner at Andrew Fairlie.
Finally a hotel where kids can stay in the pool as long as they want
Now, of course Gleneagles had a pool and actually many pools! We tried the health club and the spa.
The spa is the other big plus of GlenEagles. Probably the biggest spa that I’ve seen: treatment rooms are vast, the relaxing areas too and you even have plunge pools. Of course, sauna, steam room etc..
The treatments were also really professional and both our therapists had a wonderful hand. The ladies really spent time discussing the personalised treatment and recommended some followup care. I highly recommend the spa.
The health club is where the swimming pools are. And here Gleneagles get many brownie points: it is actually one of the few luxury hotels we’ve been to where the kids can be in the pool for the whole day, for the whole time the pool is open. This is because smartly, they created two big pools; one for the family and one for children, cleverly next to each other .
So you’ve got two heated indoor pools and there’s an outdoor pool which is a very hot. That was very nice as actually the indoor pools were a little bit cold.
Activities for everyone at Gleneagles
If you’re into sport, you’re going to be spoilt for choice. Complementary classes for guests include yoga, spinning, body conditioning, boxing and all of that.
They are lots and lots of activities outdoors as well. And if there’s one thing I’ve discovered about Scotland is that it’s really a place for outdoor lovers. You can do horse riding, shooting, fishing, gun dogs training, archery, falconry, etc.
Mr Bigg had a shooting lesson and Mademoiselle a horse riding lesson while I was enjoying another massage! They both thought that their teacher was excellent.
Finally, the children can escape to two rooms: a little den which is supervised for children under five and the den, which is for teenagers, with board games and video games and all of that, unsupervised and open until 10:00 pm.
Don’t miss a drink at the American bar
One area of the hotel that has more charm and individuality is the American bar. Mr Big and I had a champagne cocktail night cap there, leaving Mademoiselle in the room.
It did feel glamourous thanks to the old style, classy look and very expert barmen.
Gleneagles review – my verdict
The Gleneagles hotel is a great place if you like, big resorts with lots of activities. If you are more into boutique hotels, you may find that to be different. On the plus side, the activities, the service, the food are what I appreciated the most. For me the lack of individuality in the style for the main areas and bedrooms was an issue. It is a legendary hotel though so it is worth trying for one night.
Gleneagles hotel, Scotland
- 232 rooms
- Rooms from £285 but with children you’ll probably need to book a Sovereign room, which starts at £365
- Extra price for the kids’bed in the room
- Cot & highchair available
- TV & games Room onsite
- There are plenty of castles nearby to explore!
- Pool open all day for the children
- Activities for them: just ask the concierge. During the school holiday they also put together a programme for them.
- Tennis court
- Horse stables
- Golf of course
- Health area
- Beauty parlour
- Nearest airport is Edinburgh. They can come and get you from there and you wouldn’t need a car. Check flights now.