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Mount Stuart

1,204 Reviews
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Mount Stuart

1,204 Reviews
Sorry, there are no tours or activities available to book online for the date(s) you selected. Please choose a different date.
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Kenny G wrote a review Aug 2020
3 contributions1 helpful vote
Managed to drive up to the house and Walt round the grounds. The house is amazing however it remains closed to the public due to COVID-19.
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Date of experience: August 2020
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Visit Blighty wrote a review Dec 2019
2,738 contributions286 helpful votes
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Mount Stuart came on my radar as one of those very Instagrammable places. Plus having done a lot of travelling through the UK in the past 2 years in particular I’ve really become quite a fan of the style, innovation and cosiness of grand Victorian homes, so this seemed a perfect fit. Additionally I had been to Dumfries House earlier in the year which until recently was owned by the same family. I took the ferry first thing in the morning and then it’s but a short easy drive to Mount Stuart. The visitor centre is top notch and exemplary. It’s quite a long walk to get to the house. However, it takes you through various beautiful areas of the garden starting with the Kitchen Garden with its Glass Pavilion. It’s not huge, but really beautiful and jungle like. Don’t miss the fish. Then passing by the beehive and through the fir trees is an enchanting walk. I continued crossing over Lime Tree Avenue and onto the column from which you can get a stunning view out to the firth. On the way I walked past the contemporary art installation “An Inn For the Phantoms of the Outside and In” by Martin Boyce. This was not for me and I suspect not the best choice or way of trying to doll up an abandoned Tennis Court places like Houghton Hall do a much better job at integrating modern art. There are several other sculptures throughout the property which are way better. On purpose I then chose to walk further to the top of the lawn to catch my first sight of the house. I would really recommend doing this as it gives you a magnificent first impression. What a building! It truly is awesome and takes a while to even start to take it all in. I carried on to see the folly which in fact is just a ruin. Then explored some of the lower policies before making my way round to the “Wee Garden” (what a great name). This is charming, but not the most noteworthy. Thereafter I made my way to the house in time for my tour. However, coming near the house I was lead astray by the most delicious smell coming from The Courtyard restaurant/cafe. Wow wee, mouth-watering, kudos to them. Very well presented as are the rest of the visitor facilities. I was there ready for the tour which was lead by the redoubtable Margaret. An obvious stalwart passionate about her subject, but with headmistress type tendencies and an interesting thick Scottish accent. The house is AMAZING! The architecture, the ceilings, the finishing, the marble and masonry. It’s mind boggling. The significance of everything covering astrology, religion, nature and history. The impressive use of modern novelties for the time such as electricity. Margaret did an excellent job at giving us the family history and information on the objects in the rooms. However, her repetition of telling us “we could come back after the tour to see more at our own pace” was verging on the ridiculous. If she had spent less time saying that it would have given her more time to talk about the matter in hand as she ran out of time, as for example we heard nothing about the unique conservatory despite being stood feet away from it. Also it seemed bizarre how we were being chased out the house by someone forcing her to wrap up the tour only for it then to open up a few minutes later. Not the most polite or logical way of working. The Marble Hall and Staircase ceilings are both the most wondrous show stoppers with vivid colours. Amazing art and dripping in opulence. The use of light in the Marble Chapel packs an almighty punch. The ornate decorations throughout are stunning. Again the ceilings upstairs are out of this world, as is a conservatory attached to a bedroom upstairs, open fireplaces in bathrooms and trinkets such as the Lonsdale locked heart shaped casket which supposedly carried in it the heart of the 3rd Marquess of Bute perhaps, as his heart was buried on the Mount of Olives in Jerusalem. I was saddened to only later read re the additional rooms, such as the swimming pool and smoking room which one could apparently only see on a different guided tour at a cost of £40?! Here I think they are way off the mark. Going to the Isle of Bute is a mission and then to only see so few rooms (13) or having to pay silly money to see the other ones at that price tag, I must say to my dismay that takes the shine off it somewhat.. It’s cheaper to see the State rooms at Buckingham Palace! Also afterwards I read about the Shakespeare First folio being part of the collection and re the house being used as a Navy hospital. Neither of which was mentioned during the tour, but would have been really interesting to hear more about. Having been booted out the house ready for it to open I went around the Rock Garden which is wonderful and also houses some cool sculptures. I then popped back into the house to revisit one area briefly before being keen to get the next boat back to the mainland. Here again there was a bit of a lack of efficiency shall we say. After having stood at the the bus stop for quite a while I went back to the house and they told me he was on his way. The chap then arrived by which time there were 2 couples waiting with me also hoping to get out in time to catch the next boat, but the man got out of the bus, went to the house, had a good natter and only then saw fit to take us back. Luckily we did all make the boat, but his approach seemed a tab unnecessary and hardly customer friendly. I’m sorry to sound negative as the house is splendid and its finishings and ceilings are out of this world, but I would highly suggest that you do proper research ahead of time as alas it seems they pretty much expect you to put a whole day aside to really get to see it all. All could be run a lot more efficiently and giving a better customer experience would be a plus, but please please please don’t despair as it really is one of the most amazingly stunning houses I’ve come across. It’s just the customer experience that’s lacking which is a great shame as the facilities are top notch. PS - whilst I was writing this I reached out to Mount Stuart re a few facts and Louisa of their team was amazing at helping me find out some information I could not trace in the guidebook.
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Date of experience: August 2019
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Response from MS_Visitor_Services, Manager at Mount Stuart
Responded Mar 27, 2020
Dear DonnaWashington Thank you for taking the time to provide feedback on your visit and for discussing further details with me via email. Our team are passionate about delivering an outstanding visitor experience and we will continue to make improvements to the service we provide. We look forward to welcoming you back in the future. Kind regards Louisa
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Maureen B wrote a review Dec 2019
East Kilbride, United Kingdom119 contributions71 helpful votes
This is the second year we have attending the Christmas Fayre and in the most beautiful setting. Stalls were set out with beautiful crafts, and an open fire was in the entrance hall. Lovely atmosphere.
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Date of experience: November 2019
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Response from MS_Visitor_Services, Manager at Mount Stuart
Responded Mar 27, 2020
Dear Maureen B Thank you for taking the time to provide feedback on your visit to our Christmas Food & Craft Market. We thoroughly enjoyed hosting the event and look forward to welcoming you back to Mount Stuart in the future. Kind regards Louisa
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Dawn L wrote a review Nov 2019
Derby, United Kingdom38 contributions9 helpful votes
Because we were staying in one of their holiday cottages access was free. It would have been pretty pricey otherwise (probably pricey enough to have put us off) but as it turned out it was a delightful and unexpected bonus and highlight to our week on Bute. Some of the family opted to enjoy the grounds while others took the guided tour and we all met up afterwards in the tea room. The staff were exceptionally helpful. The interior is the most fascinating and decorative stately home interior I have ever seen. the guide was knowledgeable and the history and family stories were engaging. It is a rare example of what possibilities can be realised when creative imagination is combined with unlimited wealth. We are ever so glad to have visited..
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Date of experience: October 2019
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Response from MS_Visitor_Services, Manager at Mount Stuart
Responded Mar 27, 2020
Dear dawnl795 Thank you for taking the time to provide feedback on your visit. I'm delighted that you enjoyed your guided tour and visit to our Courtyard Cafe. We look forward to welcoming you back to Mount Stuart soon. Kind regards Louisa
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David D wrote a review Nov 2019
Douglas, United Kingdom9 contributions1 helpful vote
Amazing interiors with magnificent marble and wood. Not clear where the cash came from and where it is going now !
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Date of experience: November 2019
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Response from MS_Visitor_Services, Manager at Mount Stuart
Responded Mar 27, 2020
Dear drd1934 Thank you for taking the time to provide feedback on your visit. Mount Stuart House & Gardens is operated by Mount Stuart Trust. As a charitable trust all income generated through ticket, membership, retail and catering sales contributes to the maintenance and conservation of Mount Stuart, with the aim of ensuring that future generations have access to the magnificent house, gardens and collections. We look forward to welcoming you back to Mount Stuart soon. Kind regards Louisa
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