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“Wonderfully setting” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Atholl Palace Hotel

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Atholl Palace Hotel
Ranked #8 of 18 Hotels in Pitlochry
Eyemouth, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
59 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
“Wonderfully setting”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 24, 2013 via mobile

We stayed on our way home from a wedding in Elgin. We last used this hotel for company Dinner Dance and overnight stay back in the mid 1980's. it was great then and did not disappoint this time. The staff are well trained and from the moment we checked in we were made to feel welcome and special. A great bar meal served just before a power failure (external problem, not the hotel). The staff dealt with it professionally, kept us informed and found alternative ways to provide a service. All in all, a satisfying experience.

Stayed June 2013, traveled with family
Helpful?
Thank Mel L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
DSpaven, General Manager at Atholl Palace Hotel, responded to this review, June 25, 2013
Thank you sincerely for your comments regarding your recent stay. It is most kind of you to take the time out to review the hotel and I will pass this onto the rest of the team. The power cut was very unfortunate but luckily didn't last too long, and we are glad it didn't disrupt your stay too much!
We are delighted you enjoyed your visit to the hotel, and hope to welcome you back again soon!
With Best Regards
Dougal Spaven
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,685 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (407)
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English first
Sutton in Ashfield, United Kingdom
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 24, 2013

My friend and I recently did the Sunday Spa for £99, well worth it. We had an overnight stay with dinner and breakfast with an hours spa treatment. We both had full body massages which were so relaxing and the therapists were lovely. We had full use of the Spa facilities and provided with robes and slippers. Our room was delightful, everything you needed including hairdryer. Dinner was excellent, 3 courses then coffee in the lounge afterwards. The views over the mountains in the dining area were amazing! All you could eat for breakfast too which was also first class. Could not fault anything and the staff were all pleasant and helpful. Going back with my Daughter for another treat!

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank 281YvonneW
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
DSpaven, General Manager at Atholl Palace Hotel, responded to this review, June 25, 2013
Thank you sincerely for your comments regarding your recent stay. It is most kind of you to take the time out to review the spa and the hotel. I will pass your kind comments onto the rest of the team. We are delighted you enjoyed your stay, and we look forward to welcoming you back to the Atholl Palace Hotel with your daughter soon.
With Best Regards
Dougal Spaven
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Perth, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
1,109 reviews
129 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 279 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 18, 2013

The Atholl Palace Hotel, sits atop a granite outcrop and offers superb views over the Perthshire countryside. Built in the best Victorian Style it truly is magnificent. The Gardens/Grounds are probably the best of any hotel in Scotland.
We stayed for 2 nights on a DBB basis and greatly looked forward to dinner in the Verandah Restaurant. What a let down. This was "School Dinner" cuisine at its worst !!! We paid a supplement for the Chowder, which the Menu, promised a lot....but singularly failed to deliver !!!! Over salted....over smoked fish, barely edible. The lamb seasoned with sea salt and rosemary stuffed with black pudding, never existed. !!! What we go was a couple of slices of questionable lamb, non-nutritional vegetables...covered with red jus, to take away all evidence of what we were actually eating. Like all school dinner desserts, "Apple Crumble" didn't have any crumble !!! An unmitigated disaster. The Breakfast Buffet was great, other than every single item was stone cold. Did someone forget to light the flames ?????
Given that Scotland has probably one of the best larders in the world, the food presented at the Atholl Palace, was an embarrassment and I was quite ashamed that the hotel had the audacity to offer this to tourists from abroad let alone locals like me.
I could use more colourful adjectives, but will refrain from doing so.
Finally, on the 2nd night, the roast venison, turned out to be a stew, which bore an uncanny resemblance to "stewing beef"....the root vegetables, had been "mashed" resulting in something akin to a "bowl of sick" !!!! Disgusting....no thought on presentation or again nutritional value. An absolute disgrace.
To the Manager.....send for "The Hotel Inspector".....after you get yourself a chef !!!!
The only redeeming feature were the staff, who must have been embarrassed with the fayre produced. Oh forgot, we seemed to be on a speedy conveyor belt......50 minutes for a Three Course Dinner......world record......simply great for the digestion !!!!!

Room Tip: Ask for a room away from the pump/generator room and don't eat in the restaurant.
See more room tips
  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank gastronaut_11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
DSpaven, General Manager at Atholl Palace Hotel, responded to this review, June 24, 2013
Thank you for taking the time to post your review. As you can imagine, I was most disappointed to read the review of your experience at the Atholl Palace Hotel. At the Atholl Palace, we pride ourselves on our high standards of our food and customer service, therefore I am extremely concerned that we did not meet your expectations on this occasion.

I would very much appreciate the opportunity to discuss your concerns further, so that we can avoid this happening again in the future. If this would be of interest, I can be reached on dougal@athollpalace.com or 01796 472 400.

Kind Regards
Dougal Spaven
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Thames Ditton, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
47 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 15, 2013

We first got together at Atholl Palace Hotel 27 years ago, and have returned a number of times since then for romantic nostalgia. We love it, for perhaps obvious reasons.
Regarding the place; see other reviews... yes, beautiful. That is why we go back, and doubtless will again. 4 or 5 stars for that bit.

We made something of a mistake having dinner though. For two courses set at £25/head, we basically got a plated meal (in case you do not know, that means stuff that has been pre-made, and kept hot or re-heated, and we are not talking sous vide...).
I ate some soup, which although tasted home made, was quite bland, but edible. The main course was a major let down. I had gammon a la school dinner, served with cauliflower florets in a crispy crust. Well, perhaps it had once been crispy, but an unspecified time under a red lamp or some such had left it like something from an off day at KFC. There was also a glutinous 'sauce' which made no reference to its billed ingredients on the menu.
Basically, this food was old-school (pre-gastro pub) pub food. That would be OK in your local, but for £25?? In an establishment of such physical grandeur? There was quite a large proportion of the menu required a supplement too.

At a visit a few years ago, we had a similar experience, and indeed when complaining to the waitress that it was simply 'disappointing' in such a lovely place, she said that it was plated (then), but that the a la carte was good, and freshly made. We tried that the next night, and it was marvellous, although naturally pricier! Like something from a different restaurant. The price difference was no problem, since we only wanted good food. Sadly, there no longer seems to be an a la carte option, which is what we had planned for when we booked.....

Lastly, I would add that my partner had a more enjoyable experience, although the cocotte starter was 'basic', and we paid an extra £5.50 for the 'quite tasty' guinea fowl option. So, that was some £30 for her two courses.
London is supposed to be expensive, but I guarantee that there are hundreds (actually, maybe thousands) of places that for £30 would STUN you with their flair and quality; it is not about producing good food for that sort of price and still making a profit. This can easily be done as the places I allude to testify. Clearly, here it is about maxxing the profit margins for indifferent diners, and this agenda has been pursued strategically, presumably to subsidise other aspects of the business.

Here was a cynical menu designed to exploit trapped coach parties. It did not spoil our visit though— still lovely. Just don't eat there if you like nice food...
...Hence the overall rating.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Justin P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
DSpaven, General Manager at Atholl Palace Hotel, responded to this review, June 24, 2013
Thank you for taking the time to post your review. As you can imagine, I was very disappointed to read the review of your experience at the Atholl Palace Hotel. At the Atholl Palace we pride ourselves on our high standard of food and our customer service, therefore I am extremely concerned that we did not meet your expectations on this occasion.

I would appreciate the opportunity to discuss your concerns further, so that we can avoid this happening again in the future. If this would be of interest, I can be reached on dougal@athollpalace.com or 01796 472 400.
Kind regards
Dougal Spaven
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Glasgow, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
46 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 13, 2013

Impressive Victorian building at the top of the driveway. The grounds are stunning as are the views. As this was a special occasion so we booked the Edradour suite in one of the turrets. The room is unique with a curved staircase taking you from the bedroom to the upper lounge. The views of the building and surrounding Perthshire are stunning. This hotel is so Interesting to explore , from the museum in the basement giving insight into past times,to grounds and kitchen herb garden . We had the impression they encourage you to check out the quirky building. Food and staff were very nice, staff very polite. The only negatives on this trip were the restaurant window seats which because of the age of the building were draughty and on a cold day you need move, also on check out the bill was wrong and charged twice for champagne and afternoon tea but this was corrected by reception in a professional manner. Would return for sure.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Aiden L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
DSpaven, General Manager at Atholl Palace Hotel, responded to this review, June 24, 2013
Thank you sincerely for your comments regarding your recent stay. It is most kind of you to take the time out to review the hotel and I will pass this onto the rest of the team. I am very sorry to hear that your bill was incorrect on checkout but I am glad to hear it was resolved quickly.
We are delighted you enjoyed your stay, and hope to welcome you back to the Atholl Palace Hotel again soon!
With Best Regards
Dougal Spaven
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 13, 2013

Grand looking country house , with countryside views and big public rooms.service was very good but the room service price is extortionate eg £4 for a bucket of ice !! And £7 per plate just for breakfast delivery - not the contents !!!

  • Stayed June 2013
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Spacesarf
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
DSpaven, General Manager at Atholl Palace Hotel, responded to this review, June 24, 2013
Thank you sincerely for your comments regarding your recent stay. It is most kind of you to take the time out to review the hotel and I will pass this onto the rest of the team. With regards our room service prices, these comments have been passed to our directors.
We are delighted you enjoyed your stay, and hope to welcome you back to the Atholl Palace Hotel again soon!
With Best Regards
Dougal Spaven
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
13 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 11, 2013 via mobile

I have to say that I simply loved my stay at the Atholl Palace Hotel. To see it has a guest rating of 2.2 out of 5 on some sites is truly shocking. The grounds alone are magnificent, with acres of space, walks, tennis courts, fountains, streams and more. The look of the Hotel is nothing short of spectacular, both from the A9 road, and up close. The interior is dated in areas but is clean and the decor is very fitting. I really did feel I was staying somewhere very special. The staff on reception were friendly and helpful, as were those at the bar. Bar prices were about £4 a pint or short with mixer, and I enjoyed a couple of drinks on the outside benches, overlooking the beautiful scenery in the evening sun. We ate in the bar, which is a slightly different, slightly cheaper menu from the main restaurant, but it was delicious. I had a fish starter which was all fresh and beautifully presented, and my chicken main was also excellent. Two courses each for two persons was less than £40 - which for the standard of food, was very reasonable. The rooms were nothing too special, but the bed was comfortable, the shower (and toiletries) were excellent, and the tea/coffee/buscuit tray was well stocked. The only bad thing I experienced.....was having to leave! I did not get chance to use the leisure facilities due to work, but judging by the rest of the splendid hotel - I would imagine that they would be of a high standard. I can't wait to go back!!!

  • Stayed June 2013
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Nicholas H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
DSpaven, General Manager at Atholl Palace Hotel, responded to this review, June 13, 2013
Thank you ever so much for taking the time to review the Atholl Palace Hotel. I am delighted to hear that you enjoyed your stay, and I hope you managed to enjoy the summer sunshine we have been experiencing! I will pass your comments onto the rest of the team and I very much look forward to welcoming you back to the hotel again in the near future!
With best regards
Dougal Spaven
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Atholl Palace Hotel

Property: Atholl Palace Hotel
Address: Perth Road, Pitlochry PH16 5LY, Scotland
Location: United Kingdom > Scotland > Perth and Kinross > Pitlochry
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beverage Selection Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Spa Hotel in Pitlochry
#6 Luxury Hotel in Pitlochry
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Atholl Palace Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 107
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Scottish Highlands, wild and rugged, have a timeless romantic quality. At their very heart, where the River Tummel flows to the Tay, sits the historic small town of Pitlochry. The Atholl Palace Hotel, the epitome of Scottish Baronial splendour, stands overlooking wooded parkland grounds and the town to the surrounding hills. Originally opened as the Athole Hydropathic in Victorian times, the hotel retains many features of the traditional large country house, with bedroom facilities and standards which often exceed expectations and complement spacious, relaxing public areas.With 107 bedrooms, self-catering lodges, apartments and 10 function suites we can cater for your needs whether it is leisure or business purposes. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Atholl Palace Pitlochry
Hotel Atholl Palace
Atholl Palace Hotel Pitlochry, Scotland

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