Well, it looks like Summer is almost upon us, but that doesn’t mean that we need to jump a flight and cross countries to get some beautiful scenery and some much needed down time. Whether you are beach bound, headed to the countryside or discovering somewhere new, you don’t have to venture too far to have the perfect getaway. Which I recently found on my trip to Auchrannie on the beautiful Isle of Arran.
Home to rugged mountains, rolling hills and some damn good cheese, the Isle of Arran AKA “Scotland in miniature” is the ideal spot for a weekend getaway. With a quaint old town feel, fantastic food, and even better surroundings it was only a hop, skip and a short ferry ride away which, let’s face it, only gets you in the holiday spirit! With my BFF Honey Pop, our fellas and puppies in tow, we set out to Auchrannie on a lovely sunny spring day. Once we docked up, we took the dogs out a walk around the main seaside strip and came across a dog (and veggie) friendly pub, The Fiddler. This was your friendly Scottish local at it’s finest. With a heart traditional menu from haggis to Cullen skink to burgers and baked potatoes, each dish had that amazing home recipe taste and came accompanied by a local Scottish band. After a quick bite and many a toe tap, it was off to check into our cottage at Auchrannie.
We were really lucky to be the first to review one of Auchrannie’s brand new 5-star cottages. They sit separate from the hotel, restaurants, and spa but give a fantastic luxury home away from home feel. With minimalist clean interiors, balcony and fantastically fit ensuites all round, this was the perfect getaway for any family or trio of couples, and we had it all to ourselves!
Auchrannie is really your all singing, all dancing resort with a breathtaking backdrop. We were absolutely spoiled for choice when visiting all three of their restaurants. Day one was all about celebrating Scottish with their take on traditional meets tapas at their newly launched Eighteen 69. I am a huge believer that tapas being the future of food. I ALWAYS get food envy so small shareable plates is always something I am gonna get onboard with! From locally sourced venison to freshly picked veggies, Eighteen 69 was everything I would hope for and more from the staff to the food itself, presenting a forward thinking take on traditional Scottish food.
The second day we took a walk around Brodrick Castle and Country Park. I am such a romantic at heart and loved discovering the adorable Bavarian out houses and flower gardens, imagining what the Island would have been like all those years ago. After our walk, it was time for a much-needed rubdown at Espa, Auchrannie’s in-house Spa destination. I decided to go for a relaxing back and foot massage to aid my weary city gal legs, I mean, I did say those hills were rolling, right?!
Before dinner, we took a break from walking and Monopoly and arranged some time in Auchrannie’s luxury outdoor hot tub. Set five floors above the rest and reserved for the luxury suites within the hotel (and boy are they luxury) we managed to squeeze in a quick dip before trying out the other restaurant. Idyllically set in a beautifully lit conservatory, Auchrannie’s Seafood and Grill restaurant Brambles specifies in everything from land to the sea. I’ve been majorly into seafood as of late, so finishing my weekend with hand dives scallops, sea bass, a good glass of wine (or three) and good company, was exactly what I needed.
There’s something about Arran that just makes you want to switch off. And I mean completely switch off. Even without the lack of reception, it’s not very often that I forget my phone, but the fact I did it pretty much every time I left the cottage is downright unheard of. Really, I think it was my subconscious telling me to take in all in as a fun adventure with friends, rather experience everything through a camera or my phone. Call it embracing the island life, all I know is I am aching to do it again! Take a little look as to why in the video below.
If you are looking for a relaxing, fun adventure-filled getaway, Auchrannie really is your one stop shop for staycationing in Scotland. With two 4 star hotels, thirty 5 star self-catering luxury lodges, three iconic restaurants, spa AND outdoor leisure center, there’s no better way to see and discover Arran.