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“Beautiful location, great accommodation.” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Macdonald Forest Hills Hotel & Resort

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Macdonald Forest Hills Hotel & Resort
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Aberfoyle, Kinlochard, Loch Lomond and The Trossachs National Park FK8 3TL, Scotland   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Kinlochard
Glasgow, United Kingdom
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“Beautiful location, great accommodation.”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 15, 2013

The view from our lodge was stunning as it overlooked Loch Ard. Good quality accommodation including a sauna inside our lodge. Nice pool, steam room and jacuzzi (jacuzzi was little small). And nice food in the Rafters Restaurant.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • 3 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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827 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (195)
Date | Rating
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English first
Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom
20 reviews 20 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
24 helpful votes 24 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 15, 2013

We travel to Scotland almost every Christmas, mainly for the chance of snow and a change of scenery. Typically travelling to the North-East side (Aviemore usually), we decided to change our destination and experience the Trossachs. The area itself is beautiful, even in the heavy rain. The loch is brilliant, and I can imagine the opportunities available in the summer.
The resort itself just feels run down. The entrance is scruffy with the road crumbling. The hotel exterior was shrouded in scaffolding. The accommodation was spacious and comfortable but very dated and in need of modernisation. We were in Red Maple, overlooking the tennis courts and the loch. The view was great, the apartment well equipped, but it was just nothing special.
The facilities in the resort were fairly good. The pool and gym area are very modern and pleasant. Unfortunately there had been flooding in the sports hall and squash courts, rendering them unusable. I'm unsure which restaurant we went into, but it was attached to the hotel. It was great inside, very regal feeling but the menu was very expensive, although I understand that it is a high performing restaurant.
A few other issues include the billing, which I notice another reviewer commented upon. Despite fairly frugal use of the heating and other electrical appliances (the sauna was never used!), our electricity bill was around £60, and we were charged a phone bill of £20, at a cost of 50p per minute. One of the phone calls was to NHS direct following an illness within the party. I think it is an abuse of the lack of phone signal. We even asked if they could call on our behalf but refused.
Overall, the best thing is the leisure facilities (and the staff there who were great) and the location (not far from Aberfoyle which has a well-stocked Co-Op, and a beautiful area). Worst thing is that the rest of the resort feels tired. Accommodation is spacious but dated, and the TV had very limited range of channels. Would not recommend it given the other resorts available in Scotland.

Room Tip: I hear that some parts have been refurbed, could request one when booking. Down by the tennis courts...
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 13, 2013

My wife and I have 3 young children and all I wanted for my birthday was a quiet evening and morning with just us.. The difference in our stress levels was just amazing when we came home, the food was lovely, the night porter for midnight preggers munchies for cheese sandwiches was just wow factor after such a nice evening meal and invite to the annual party. Bed just perfect, view over Loch Ard, breakfast when you know the eggs are perfect,

drat Granny gone, home now and back off the idyllic hotel we just had the fortune in finding,

staff so nice, sauna and steam /phew and an pool, such lovely people and can't wait to go back without "Emily"! :)

Thank you to all at the hotel who just made us feel very welcome.

Room Tip: ask for the upgrade to new refurbs
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  • Stayed January 2013, 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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16 reviews 16 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
96 helpful votes 96 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed January 13, 2013

It's been a long time since we last time we visited Forest Hills and I was looking forward to going with an open mind, hoping they'd improved from last time. My hopes were quickly dashed the day before arrival when I got a call to say they were having a 'post Christmas' party in the Garden restaurant the next day, and if I didn't want to take part I'd have to go to Rafters Restaurant - So, restaurant choice immediately cut in half, could they not have told me this when I booked! (or are their party night always last minute!). We weren't interest in having a christmas dinner on the 12th Jan, so Rafters it's have to be!

Arrived at the hotel and thought we'd have a bite of lunch, waiter who served us had a real attitude problem, how about a smile and some curteous service please, rather than a stuck up attitude!

To be fair dinner in Rafters later was good and the Polish staff were very attentive and helpful. However my real bugbear was that when we returned to the hotel, and put our three year old to bed, little did we know that the 'post Christmas' Disco would last till 1am! Despite being 2 floors above the restaurant we could plainly hear the thump thump of the music and couldn't sleep til it stopped. The wife phoned reception, they were just like, tough, it's going on til 1!

At no point during booking or checkin were we told this disco was going to be going on so late, they should have told us so that we could request a room as far away from the function room as possible, for the sake of our, and our young son's sleep!

To top it all off the room smelt damp and was quite outdated (old TVs, worn sofa etc). There was scafolding all round the windows , with dirt and plaster all over the outside sills - Again , no mention on booking.

Then on leaving they tried to overcharge us, their excuse - they don't have time to work out all the bills from the restaurant properly and just lumped it all together! I'm sorry, if you can't work out a bill properly you shouldn't be in the hotel trade!

So, the 2 stars are just really for the Rafters experience - Definately the worst Macdonald hotel I've ever stayed in, and I've been in quite a few!

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dumbarton, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed January 10, 2013

I was part of a party of 26 people that booked the MacDonald’s Forrest hill for the Xmas overnight Dinner dance. On booking we requested a family room for my family, (3 of us), we were informed that no family rooms available, so we would have 2 rooms...we were ok with that...assuming that the 2 rooms would be near each other...not so...my daughter was at the opposite end of the hotel from us….on checking our room, we found it was huge, with a large bed and Bed settee...(could be family room??)...then when we met with our friends, we were informed that one of the couples in our party had been given a suite, which comprised of 2 bedrooms and sitting room....I was not happy. Anyway decided to make the best of it...the deal we bought was the Dinner dance Bed and breakfast, with the price including half bottle of wine each, and 3 drinks vouchers. As this was one of the most expensive deals we found when looking for a venue, we thought the wine and vouchers would cancel out the extra cost...only to find the wine on the table was like vinegar..and the drinks Vouchers got your "House" spirits...again not drinkable...wouldn’t have minded if I could afford to buy my own alcohol...but at £5.20 for a spirit..not including mixer...it was going to be an expensive night. When we returned to our rooms after the dance, we were met by a letter telling us that as the hotel was very busy that night, so we should try and make breakfast between 08:30 and 09:30, instead of before 10:30 as normal!!...after a late night dance...I don’t think so. Most of our party arrived for breakfast circa 10am...we were seated a proceeded to order our breakfast...the service was very haphazard....we got our Tea/Coffee soon after ordering..then a bit later some cold toast...eventually followed about 40 mins later by our breakfast...and with some of the items missing...as they had run out (they knew how many people were booked in for the night!!)...when one of our party asked if they could have some hot toast...the response from the waiter, was that they were very busy...so it wouldn’t be possible!!. We made the best of it...and after breakfast gathered our belongings to check out, at this point one of our party went to the bar and bought 2 cans of iron brew and a diet coke...the bill for this came to £9. When my daughter was checking out, she was told there would be a charge for making phone calls from the room...her 2 calls lasted a total of approx. 10 mins....for this she was being charged £19:50...at this point I stepped in a said this was daylight robbery...I could get a monthly contract for less than that...I also stated it was not our fault that none of our party could get receptions on our mobile phones...I think the receptionist was so embarrassed by the charge that she deduced £10 from the bill. Added to the above was fact that the Staff were most unhelpful with many of them being Surly when serving us...though after everything else, this didn’t surprise us All in all a huge disappointment for a stay that cost our party in excess of £2600, and that was before we even spent money on our Drinks etc .....Not at all what I would expect from a 4* hotel...needless to say we will not be back. As a party this is an annual outing for us, and we have been to some hotels that have charged half this price, and had a fabulous time...so I suggest MacDonald’s do a major rethink...or they may find themselves without customers

Room Tip: If you are going to Aberfoyle, try and get another Hotel...this one is too pricy for what you get...
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with friends
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Motherwell, United Kingdom
11 reviews 11 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 10, 2013

We stayed here on the 29th December for one night to celebrate my son's 21st birthday. We were all looking forward to our short break, and the chance to get away from everything. This is the ideal hotel if you want to escape from everyday life. No mobile signal, so my husband couldn't be contacted about work meant peace and quiet during our stay!
We had two rooms in the older part of the hotel, which whilst being older fashioned in decor, were perfectly clean and adequate for us. My son and his girlfriend were in the newer section of rooms, which had a beautiful view over the loch. It was a very nice touch that the Resort General Manager had put a bottle of wine into the room as a welcome gift for my son, and it was much appreciated.
We spent the afternoon in Rafters, which could do with modernising, however the games machines and pool table allowed us to have fun as a family. Dinner in the Garden Restaurant that evening was delicious and the menu had something for everyone. The atmosphere was relaxed and we all enjoyed our meal. We sat by the roaring fire in the bar and had a few drinks before the evening ended. Breakfast the following morning was equally as good, with a good buffet selection. Great way to start the day! Thank you to all the staff we encountered during our stay, we hope to go back again, as it was the perfect location for that special occasion!

  • Stayed December 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Top Contributor
59 reviews 59 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 26 cities Reviews in 26 cities
79 helpful votes 79 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 8, 2013

My husband and I have just returned from staying at MacDonald’s Forest Hills Hotel and Spa in Aberfoyle for the New Year Celebrations. We have been staying at this Hotel for the last five years, and have always been very pleased with the level of service that this Hotel offered, and what they provided for the Hogmanay package. Unfortunately this year they have made so many cut backs at this Hotel that for us we did not get the true Scottish Hogmanay experience that we have always had, and it was definitely not worth the £1,000 we had to pay for a four night stay. This Hotel has always offered in the past Silver Service and a Fine Dining experience, and excellent service. They have always had a lovely selection of breads, a small bottle of champagne in our room on New Years Eve, with chocolates, a Piper playing at 3pm on New Years Eve outside the Hotel to welcome guests with mulled wine and mince pies, and excellent service in the Restaurant, which is what you expect from a 4 star Hotel. This year the service was appalling, with the Resort Manager having to serve food on New Years Eve, we had to wait ½ hr for our wine at dinner and there were only two selections on bread if you were lucky, on our last day they only had olive bread for breakfast, not what we normally eat for breakfast!! Plus they have cut the breakfast selection down by half to what they used to have, no table cloths on the tables, no Piper greeting guests at the front of the Hotel On New Years Eve, no Champagne in our room, we were told that there would be Champagne cocktails in the lounge before the New Year Eve festivities began with nibbles at 6.30pm, we went down at 6.30pm and were told by staff that we had to wait until 7pm, which is when we had to go into dinner? the staff didn’t have a clue what they were doing we had no pre dinner nibbles, and we only just managed to get a Champagne cocktail each. Rafters bar was closed after New Years Eve, so everyone came into the Garden Restaurant for their evening meals and were allowed to wear trainers, jeans and T Shirts, and the fine dining which we expected and paid for went down to burgers and Lasagne for dinner. If we wanted burgers or Lasagna to eat we would have gone to a 2* or 3* Hotel, on the whole the main menu had a very poor selection, with chicken, salmon and what looked like two vegetarian choices, if you wanted steak you hd to pay a supplement, if you wanted chesses & biscuits instead of desert you had to pay extra. We were informed that The Resort Manage had made all these changes in May of 2012, but had not informed people that had already booked to stay at this Hotel before that date of these changes, he left the Hotel on New Years Day, so we could not put in our complaint and were told that the New Resort Manager had not arrive. We will not come back to this Hotel again for Hogmanay unless they change things back to how they used to be, we have always previously enjoyed our stay at this Hotel, but it seems to have gone down to 2 or 3* Hotel, definitely not a Fine Dining Hotel that they advertise

Room Tip: All the rooms that we have stayed in have been excellent
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Macdonald Forest Hills Hotel & Resort

Address: Aberfoyle, Kinlochard, Loch Lomond and The Trossachs National Park FK8 3TL, Scotland
Location: United Kingdom > Scotland > Loch Lomond and The Trossachs National Park > Kinlochard
Bar / Lounge Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Kinlochard
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Macdonald Forest Hills Hotel & Resort 4*
Number of rooms: 55
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Nestled within the breath-taking scenery of The Trossachs, Macdonald Forest Hills Hotel & Spa provides a luxurious getaway right on your doorstep. Our hotel in Aberfoyle is located just 20 minutes from Stirling, 40 minutes from Glasgow and less than an hour from Edinburgh, offering the perfect retreat from city life. Indulge in award-winning dining in the Garden Restaurant, or enjoy a delicious afternoon tea on the terrace while watching over Lake Ard. Our sumptuous spa is just the thing if you need to relax, with a fabulous selection of Elemis treatments on offer or, for the more adventurous, why not take to the surrounding hills or venture out on to the lake. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Macdonald Forest Hills Hotel Aberfoyle
Macdonald Forest Hills Hotel And Resort
Macdonald Forest Hills Aberfoyle
Forest Hills Hotel

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