CRAIGELLACHIE HOTEL - Aberlour

The Craigellachie hotel itself is discreetly located in amongst a wooded area. Built in 1893, at the confluence of the rivers Fiddich and Spey, the Craigellachie Hotel is a 26-room boutique hotel that sits majestically at the very heart of Speyside and its malt whisky trail. Macallan and Aberlour are two of the hotel’s closest neighbours, but in truth you’re surrounded by some of the most ‘famous names’ in whisky. It seems almost perverse to begin any appraisal of a hotel by going first to the bar, but the Craigellachie is an exception, and indeed a big part of the reason why so many people travel from all over the world to specifically stay at this venue. Let’s be honest, only a vast majority of the guests are staying here because of their interest in whisky, so it seems legitimate to kind of acknowledge that there is something of an alcohol interest flowing not just through the hotel, but the entire town of Aberlour itself

‘The Quaich’ was also founded in 1893, and is the world’s leading whisky bar. It houses over 900 single-malt whiskies from across the globe. It is not only significant for its size, but also for the sheer variety. It has sought out the most unique and rare whiskies, some of which are exclusive to the Craigellachie and all of which can be sampled by the glass.

Part of whiksy collection in the Quaich Bar

The ‘Copper Dog’ is the hotel’s own on-site pub, and as you might imagine, whisky isn’t exactly in short supply here either. That the ‘Copper Dog’ is widely used by locals as well as residents should give you a good take as to the high regard in which it is held. It has a crackling wood fire for the winter, and a large sun-terrace for outdoor drinking and dining during the summer months. The Copper bar has a fine selection of beers from local craft breweries alongside the familiar favourite ales. Naturally it has an imaginative large cocktail list, and few innovative creations that feature whisky. The Copper Dog’s food menu is strictly farm to fork and sources fresh, local Speyside produce from within a 50mile radius where ever possible.

The Copper Dog

The twenty six bedroom hotel feels like a countryside family home: Johnston’s of Elgin cashmere topped mattresses, Egyptian cotton sheets and classically designed bathrooms lend it a sense of refinement that helps remind us that Scotland at it’s best is about class. Five of the rooms have access to the garden

There is a choice of three rooms from ‘snug’ to ‘comfyluxe’. In truth the use of the word ‘snug’ might be a little bit misleading in so much as it conjures visions of small. Snug rooms are actually better than that, and do have the advantage of being able to support twin arrangements or used under single occupancy. The ‘Comfy’ and ‘Comfyluxe’ rooms are more spacious and feature four poster beds

If there is one thing we really need to draw your attention to however, then it’s early booking. The Craigellachie Hotel has built up a strong and loyal following amongst it’s guests. That’s fine, we can be reassured by this, but sadly it’s not a large capacity accommodation. The hotel also tends to cater to whisky drinkers first and foremost, which means it needn’t have been laid out with golfers in mind. It doesn’t have that many ‘twin’ rooms. The beds tend to be handcrafted doubles, so it doesn’t have the scope that a lot of other hotels do with modern zip-beds that can be split. If you’re able to plan this ahead though, then we’ll normally be OK, but if it’s left too late, we’ll struggle.

Snug rooms do have some capacity to operate as a twin (this one doesn’t) but you might find you’re needing to consider booking as singles if we’re facing pressure in the diary

Single Supplements

Even though we have to impose some supplementary surcharges in line with passing costs on, we endeavour to adopt a sincere position that doesn’t seek to penalise such travellers and exploit your situation, occasionally absorbing some of the cost ourselves. Despite our commitment to fair play, there is still ultimately only two bottom-line options:

1: Pay a single traveller supplement
2: If you indicate a willingness, we can attempt to pair you in a twin room

The Craigellachie Hotel is a little bit unique in so much as its comparatively low supply of twin rooms might coerce you into considering whether you’re prepared to absorb the supplement for the experience of staying there. We say this because if whisky really ‘is a thing’ for you, then it can be justified when perhaps it wouldn’t be elsewhere. Sure it costs more, but then you do get the added benefit of your ‘own space’. It is also worth mentioning that a single person will rarely be allowed to play a round of golf solo, and you will almost certainly be required to join a group. This can sometimes work to your advantage though, as you’ll be more flexible.

Cancellation premiums

Most hotels operate a cancellation premium of some description. The amount charged however varies between chains, and even different hotels within the same chain, it also fluctuates with little sense of predictability. In addition, the terms and conditions also differ with 3 days to 24 hours being typical cut-off points beyond which cover is invalidated. Group bookings can find they’re subjected to 28 days given that a hotelier takes a bigger risk accepting such a reservation to a mass cancellation. We try to reserve piecemeal as a result

Our policy is to recover what we can for you, but we are restricted in line with what the hotel offers. It’s always helpful to check the individual hotels T&C’s. We advise you if booking by credit card, to check that you don’t hold an added service item that came when you signed up. This might cover you.

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