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“Hotel great, food superb” 5 of 5 stars
Review of The Lovat, Loch Ness

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The Lovat, Loch Ness
3.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Loch Ness, Fort Augustus PH32 4DU, Scotland   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #1 of 2 Hotels in Fort Augustus
Thatcham, UK
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
“Hotel great, food superb”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 15, 2012

We stayed for 1 night DB&B and our whole experience was wonderful. A small error when booking over the phone was handled so well it turned into a positive experience, including a room upgrade. The room itself (in the main hotel) was very comfortable with a massive bed and a lovely view across the mountains. All of the staff were extremely warm and friendly and made us feel very special. Scottish breakfast in the Brasserie was a treat, comprising local ingredients cooked and served with care. However the star of the show was the dinner we had in the fine dining restaurant. The food was spectacular: a five course sampler menu with unexpected and amusing combinations, beautifully presented and tasting just wonderful. We have had the fortune to eat a couple of times in Michelin-starred restaurants and this experience was at least as good, if not better.

A big thanks to all the staff, especially the chef, for giving us such a great weekend. We will be back!

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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697 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (130)
Date | Rating
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English first
Isle of Bute, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
52 reviews 52 reviews
21 hotel reviews
Reviews in 28 cities Reviews in 28 cities
35 helpful votes 35 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 11, 2012

We had booked for one night on a tour of the western highlands to take in Loch Ness. The hotel entrance is a bit old and faded. The room with a view- modern with very good ensuite facilities
-The management are clearly involved in a programme of development. The bar and brassserie has been done-The staff are pleasant and helpful. We were not sure what to expect with dinner in the main restaurant. A lovely waitress who could not have been more enthusiastic about the set meal attended. The chef is inspired, my wife and I went through five courses of divine cooking-We feel reluctant to admit somehow but think it was the best meal we have ever had.We love good food. There were only three tables taken and shortly this brilliant chef will end the season and cook only for the Brassserie until next Spring.Somehow I feel his awsome talent is under used. I hope the evolution of the Lovat will enable more continuous use of such an amazing talent. In the meantime we shall never forget our stay at the Lovat would look to eat there again one day.

Room Tip: I suspect a bigger room than ours might be better-and the view is not that important as it had rathe...
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
secret
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed October 7, 2012 via mobile

My boyfriend and I were in fort augustus for lunch, we tried a few pubs but they have certain eating times (ridiculous that you cant get lunch at 5 past 2 in the afternoon)! Anyway, we then headed to the lovat, had a look at the reviews but they are all a bit mixed so we decided to give it a shot. We just ordered a soup and sandwich lunch! The soup tasted of the drink sambuca and the sandwich had a horrid green runny mayo, was not nice. We then got a little cake each and that was very good. However the bill came and it was over £30 for a little soup and sandwich and a cake. The food was over garnished and wasnt nice, the view and decor was lovely. The staff were not discreet and I heard things i shouldnt have! Wouldnt recommend.

  • Stayed September 2012
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CeeGee1, Owner at The Lovat, Loch Ness, responded to this review, October 10, 2012
Many thanks for taking the time to write on TripAdvisor, it is greatly appreciated.

Firstly I am so pleased that we were able to accommodate you when you mention that so many other places in the village turned you away, however it is a shame that your experience was not what you expected.

I have tried to work out your bill and think that maybe there was an error on the day?

Soup is at £4.95 – I can only guess without knowing the date you came to the Brasserie, that the soup was carrot and star anise, which would give it that flavour

Sandwich is at £7.25 – I think this must have been the chicken sandwich which has an herb mayonnaise – so possibly your dislike was a personal preference. I am puzzled over how the meal was over garnished as it is only salad & wedges that come with the sandwich and there would possibly have been croutons or toasted seeds on top of the soup. Was there anything else excessive?

Cake is at £1.85 – which was are glad you enjoyed

Total = £14.05 – please can you check your receipt to see if there was an error...did you have drinks that would take the bill over £30?

I am intrigued to learn of what you overheard that you shouldn’t have – I am certainly not one for gossip myself but if staff members were conversing inappropriately then this requires attention so look forward to more information from you.

It is a shame that you wouldn’t recommend the hotel despite finding us accommodating, offering good cakes, having lovely decor and views – I guess we can’t be to all tastes.
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Scotland
1 review
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed October 6, 2012

My husband and I stayed at the Lovat for two nights in June and the second night we had a dinner there. Although I made it clear when ordering that I am allergic to dairy products, I was served a dip with parmesan. Just when I began to try, a waitress came back and informed me that the dip contained dairy. I took immediate medical action and the worst was avoided. However, as a consequence, I suffered from rash all over my body.

The staff were apologetic immediately after the incident, and we accepted it as an unfortunate mistake.

However, I was let down how the matter was handled the following morning by the manager. She behaved as if nothing had happened and did not have the courtesy to ask how I was. If she had asked, I would have mentioned that I still felt unwell and had had a sleepless night. Consequently, I left the Lovat rather upset.

After our return, I wrote an email to her that I was upset about her attitude. To my surprise, instead of offering a word of apology, she accused me that I was unclear about my allergy when I ordered food: I had mentioned about my allergy 3 times to the waitress, when I ordered, when the food was served and before I tried it.

She went on saying that the waitress would not have been bothered to inform me of the mistake if she had not cared but she let me know because she did care. This response is truly baffling because it clearly shows the manager's ignorance about food allergy: it can be fatal. It is not a matter of if one cares or not. How can anyone who is so ignorant about food allergy be allowed to run an establishment which serves food?

Although she wrote that she took immediate measures to prevent the mistake again, the following morning, I was nearly served a poached fish cooked with milk. This time a member of staff spotted the mistake and fortunately it did not end up on my table.

In her email the manager explained her attitude on the morning I left as "the situation had been resolved the night prior and didn’t need to stirred up again". That is the reason why she behaved as if nothing had happened.

My experience at the hotel was unpleasant but reading her reply was even more upsetting. I have stayed in many hotels and some were not nice, but once I checked out, I could totally forget about them. Sadly, my experience with the Lovat is not the case. At least, not yet.

Stayed June 2012, traveled as a couple
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CeeGee1, Owner at The Lovat, Loch Ness, responded to this review, October 10, 2012
After nearly 5 months that has including detailed email correspondence, it is such a shame that there doesn’t seem to be a mutual resolution to this extremely devastating situation that has affected us both.

We are deeply sorry for the anguish we caused you on the night and subsequently with the correspondence that seemed to be misinterpreted. You may recall that I did telephone you to discuss the matter but you didn’t want to speak with me. I was left with no choice but to reply via email when sadly written correspondence can be so misconstrued, which I feel occurred in this case.

Anyone who has been to the hotel will know that we truly care for our guests and this is an unfortunate situation that has scarred us all.

Before providing my original reply, I think it should be noted that the staff member in charge on the night was myself however the person you refer to as ‘manager’ who was working the following morning, organising your checkout was not in fact working the night prior – she also did not write the letter, it was me.

I know that in your previous reply you had said that you would never come back so we didn’t make you an offer to return but we would welcome the opportunity to show you that we do care, that we have made changes and that we are sorry but fully understand if you say, ‘No’.

Kind regards,
Caroline


Sent: 19 July 2012 22:51

"We all remember the night clearly because the situation gave us all a shock.

Robert who took your order had just returned to work after 9 months off and was confused over the gluten free and dairy free requirement. Gluten free was the only element written on your check which we adhered to. He in particular was devastated at the implications of such a mistake and didn’t handle it head-on with you, being more embarrassed at having caused you such grief, than anything else. Instead he apologised to your husband.

Agi who served you the gluten free bread was careful to separate it from the gluten bread but was unaware at this time of your dairy free requirement. The pesto was a new variation of walnut & parsley – she did not realise at the time that it contained the normal ingredients of garlic & parmesan until she spoke with me – at this point she rushed back to inform you. If she hadn’t cared or was acting irresponsibly she wouldn’t have informed you straight away – she realised her mistake and reacted immediately.

After your departure upstairs, I recall chatting with your husband on at least 3 occasions at the table – apologising profusely about what had just happened...I wouldn’t wish your reaction on anyone & I certainly wouldn’t wish what we experienced either.

Emma also phoned your room to check on you & I remember offering to get medical advice when discussing the situation with your husband. In all honestly we didn’t know what state you were in so needed guidance from him on how to act in this instance.

Yes, we could have spoken to you more directly but in such a situation we didn’t want to interfere or impose on your personal space.

Your return to the table, albeit after knowing you had to take medical action, was a relief. We brought out soya butter for your gluten free bread and then left you to ‘enjoy’ what was left of the evening. From our point of view, an apology has a very fine line boarding between ‘overkill’ and what you feel now was a pitiful response to your serious situation. We didn’t want to be constantly pestering you to find out how you were and hoped your husband would convey our worry.

I do know that Robert was on duty over breakfast but felt incompetent at his own abilities to look after you over breakfast after his mistake with your diary free request - he wanted to give you space – he could have spoken with you again but we all felt that the situation had been resolved the night prior and didn’t need to stirred up again.

We left strict instructions with Lesley, who was on duty over the morning – detailing what happened the night prior along with soya butter & soya milk if you so required it. We certainly didn’t take the matter lightly.

The following day after this occurrence we put immediate measures in place:

• Bolder writing in the menu to advise guests to be clear with their requests

** dairy free & low fat options available as well as meals suitable for those with coeliac disease. Please be very clear with your request when discussing with the staff member – if you have a severe allergy please make us aware immediately & highlight this point **

• More detailed printer instructions for the kitchen
• Additional staff training with daily menu descriptions for all to study

Dietary requirements, intolerances & allergies vary considerably & it is a challenge to grasp the different severities. We have learnt to ask more questions but it is also imperative that guests are emphatic when they offer information that could potentially have life threatening consequences.

It is a shame that I didn’t have a more personal chat with you on the phone as I really do hope you glean my sincerity through this email. If we felt that the apology should have been extended we certainly would have done so but we all felt that we had dealt with the situation the night prior and it didn’t need to be reignited.

If you would like to discuss the above, then I am more than happy to contact you via the telephone.

Kind regards,
Caroline"


Sent: 26 July 2012 09:21

"Thanks for your reply.

I certainly would have preferred to chat on the telephone as this would have been more personal than an email that can be misconstrued. I am sorry that you feel this way about my detailed account - my intention was merely to provide our side of events, not as an excuse. We are aware of our mistake and have put various procedures in place to minimise such a situation again.

Thanks for your additional comments which have been taken on board – kind regards,
Caroline"
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Australia
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 3, 2012

Stayed at the Lovat and loved our stay. The place has made a real effort to be more 'green'. This includes biodegradable soaps for guests and cleaning products staff use for the rooms, more efficient ways of heating and even recycling bins in the main courtyard.

Our studio room had a heated slate floor in the bathroom, which was a nice surprise. In the main house there was a lounge area with a fire and some magazines you are welcome to read (and the latest issues too!). There is also a drawing room which has a couple of board games.
And free WiFi in the room too!

Breakfast was good too. The quality of food was overall much better than other places I've stayed... particularly their cheeses!
And the staff were so lovely. Nothing was ever too much trouble for them.

Overall it was great. Would stay again.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
The Old Dominion
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 2, 2012

Our group of twelve friends travelling on a two week tour of Scotland had the pleasure of staying at the Hotel Lovat for two memorable evenings. Ft Augustus is a wonderful small community at the mouth of the great Loch Ness and many of the rooms at the Lovat have views of the Great Glen. The southern tip of Loch Ness and spectacular views are just a couple minutes walk from the hotel. Each of our travelers found their rooms to be super clean and perfectly appointed – comfortable in every respect. Because of the size of our group we arranged to have our ice-breakers and then dinner in the hotel’s library. The food was wonderful. In fact, the specially printed menu for our group showed was titled “The Bonnie Dozen Dinner Menu”. We had the pleasure of absolutely wonderful service and when we all fell in love with the fresh Mussels on the first night the chef made a special effort to have them on our menu the following night – way beyond the call of duty. The location of our lodging allowed us to make an easy day trip to the Isle of Skye and then upon departure after the second night we took a wonderful wandering trip along the western coast (Wester Ross). During our two weeks on the road the Bonnie Dozen lodged in four different and good hotels but the Lovat won our vote – hands down. PS, we organized this trip on our own without the help of a travel service.

Room Tip: Ask for a room with a view of the Great Glen (Loch Ness). I bit more expensive but worth every penn...
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  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Rochester, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 30, 2012

We were staying in the area in August 2012. We went to Lovat for dinner one evening.
The food was excellent; the Service could not be better the surroundings and view perfect.
The food made from fresh local ingredients blended together by chefs that know what they are doing.
Take your time here and enjoy every mouthful.
Will be back if in the area.

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Lovat, Loch Ness

Address: Loch Ness, Fort Augustus PH32 4DU, Scotland
Location: United Kingdom > Scotland > Scottish Highlands > Loch Ness > Fort Augustus
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 2 Hotels in Fort Augustus
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — The Lovat, Loch Ness 3*
Number of rooms: 28
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A Victorian property that delicately balances tradition & contemporary. The dedicated team has a drive & passion to deliver an outstanding visitor experience. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Lovat, Loch Ness Hotel Fort Augustus
The Lovat, Loch Ness Fort Augustus, Scotland

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