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“Great view and a great stay.”
Review of Ballachulish Hotel

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Ballachulish Hotel
Ranked #3 of 3 Hotels in Ballachulish
Reviewed September 4, 2013

Just the perfect historic hotel for our tour of Loch Ness an Ben Nevis. The nearby hiking and cycling trails are not to be missed. The view from dining room and bar were a highlight of our stay. The free parking is convenient.

  • Stayed: August 2013, traveled with family
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3  Thank Timothy B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Martin M, General Manager at Ballachulish Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded September 11, 2013

Dear Reviewer

I was really pleased to read your review with regards to your stay with us here at the Ballachulish Hotel. I read your comments to the team and they were delighted with your feedback.
We look forward to welcoming you back in the future and Thank you for taking the time to write about your experience.

With all of our kindest regards
The Ballachulish Hotel

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed September 3, 2013

stayed here before walking Ben Nevis. The surrounding scenery is spectacular which is more than can be said for the hotel. The welcome at reception was good but sadly it went downhill from there. The view from the room was excellent and took your mind off the fraying curtains, the filthy carpet and the long term dust collection behind mirrors, on top of wardrobes and pictures.Whilst not looking for house keeping issues, it exemplifies the overall malaise of a hotel that didn't care. Pulling out the chair to read our map, the stained upholstery suggested I would perhaps be better sitting on the less than comfortable bed! The bathroom was functional but at least it was clean but lacked things I would expect from a hotel when paying this price - toiletries, flannel. Got a bar of soap, towels and two disposable cups. The restaurant and bar were lovely locations, food was okay but some of the restaurant staff were lacked customer focus and ability to smile. As part of our 3 peaks expedition, I'm pleased to report all other hotels were MUCH cheaper and so much nicer. I am sure the coach party weren't paying our nightly rate. In summary; over priced, over rated, tired, okay food with okay service but a wonderful location, magnificent views and nice bar ambiance.

Room Tip: Don't opt for the "new wing"
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  • Stayed: August 2013, traveled with friends
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4  Thank T0tti
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Martin M, General Manager at Ballachulish Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded September 11, 2013

Friendly
Dear Reviewer

Thank you for your comments with regards to your stay here with us at the Ballachulish Hotel. It is much appreciated.

I am sorry you found the hotel to be below your expectations, obviously when a guest is not happy with their room we will always offer a room move but we do need to know that you have an issues to be able to offer a solution, I am sure you will welcome the news that we are due to start a refurbishment in the near future.

I am sorry if these aspects hindered your enjoyment of your stay.

I do hope you decide to stay with us again in the future

Kindest regards
The Ballachulish Team

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Reviewed August 30, 2013

Stayed here for 2 nights on a tour and I must say I was impressed. Room was a little hard to find but that seems to be the norm with the hotels in the Scottish Highlands. The staff are friendly and helpful and the food was good too. The atmosphere in this hotel is relaxed and my room was nice and clean. Tip though, there is nothing around the hotel. If you want to go out and be in the middle of something stay in Fort William. That said if you want peace and quiet this is the hotel for you.

Room Tip: Choose a room close to the staircase so it is easy to find.
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  • Stayed: August 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank Travel_Russ_20
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Martin M, General Manager at Ballachulish Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded September 11, 2013

Dear Reviewer

I was really pleased to read your review with regards to your stay with us here at the Ballachulish Hotel. I read your comments to the team and they were delighted with your feedback.
We look forward to welcoming you back in the future and Thank you for taking the time to write about your experience.

With all of our kindest regards
The Ballachulish Hotel

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 27, 2013

This hotel is in a fabulous location looking out out over a loch with mountain views all around and just minutes from the stunning Glen Coe. Admittedly the bridge over the loch is a little bit of an eyesore but from most vantage points it is not in the line of sight.
This once must have been a magnificent hotel with a real baronial feel to it but just like many other Highland establishments, cheap overseas travel and volatile weather have no doubt forced it to re-position itself in the market. Rather than simply increasing prices, it would appear to have chosen to go for higher occupancy by accepting coach parties and allowing the occasional bit of maintenance to wait a while ( a leak in the reception ceiling was in full flow in late August and I understand was also there some months earlier).
So if you are looking for a perfectly maintained hotel at what appears to be a relatively keen price, this place is not for you. If however you make the assumption that a slightly lower price probably means that there will be some minor issues and eccentricities, I think this could be a fun place to stay.
Our room was in the old part of the hotel; up two creaky flights of stairs and there is no lift. Look down out of the window and the view was a flat roof (probably over the kitchens) but look up and there was a majestic munro soaring into the sky. The windows were old casements with caked on paint built up over years but they could be opened fully letting in great wafts of lochside air (or sizzling bacon in the early mornings - I had no problem with that!).
Breakfast was a buffet with cold and hot tables. The latter included all the ingredients to make a 'Full Scottish' with the obvious ability to bespoke (in my case to skip the grilled tomato and stack up on the bacon and black pudding) if you so wished. We discovered that most coach parties stay one night and breakfast early so if you too are on an early start, the fried eggs might run out ! That apart and of course the lack of a kipper or other fish option, I would say that the breakfast was as good as many others offered by other Highland hotels offering a menu service.
Dinner was taken in the same area (with the coach parties sort of hidden in their own bit at one end). The menu had five or six safe starters and mains and the food was of good quality. The Balmoral chicken ( a breast stuffed with haggis) was very moist and tasty, the prawn cocktail solid and the fish and chips exceptionally good.
One odd/endearing thing about both breakffast and dinner was the table. Everything including cutlery, glasses, elbows, salt & pepper and wine bottles sort of stuck to it and required a little tug to be released. A first impression might be that the table was dirty but not so; we watched them being wiped regulalrly. It must be the varnish or polish somehow reacting with the atmosphere or maybe the cleaning products to create a very viscous surface coat. Anyway, once aware, it is quite reassuring that an accidental kick of a table leg will not send an attention grabbling thunder of noise across the dining room. Furthermore, should a strong gust of wind find its way in from the loch there is no chance of one's napkin being lost. I hope therefore that they keep these tables and maybe raise some cash by selling their secret to NASA.
Throughout the staff were friendly and helpful (although it was sometimes necessary to go and find them first).
So if you have time to manage your expectations and believe that quirky hotels with their characters and odd features are part of what make some of the best vacation memories, there is every reason to give this place a try.

Room Tip: This is an old hotel with an extension and so there is not a particulalrly standard room size/layout...
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  • Stayed: August 2013, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank JCHappyskier
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 26, 2013

Location of this hotel was awesome! Acommodations were just OK! Breakfast was good! Would stay again for the location! Just beautiful lakes! Loved the location! Stayed in newer part of hotel! Was Ok! Would go there again!

  • Stayed: August 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank chgreen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 24, 2013

We booked a double room on 2nd January for a one night stay in August. All confirmed and PAID FOR in January. Two weeks before our arrival we received an email to say that due to maintenance work, they would not be able to accommodate us. (maintenance work in August?)

They were fully booked as was their sister hotel, so they had reserved us a room in another hotel in Glencoe. I am not naming that hotel because my complaint is not with them. As soon as we were told that we had been bounced, I checked Tripadvisor for the substitute hotel. I have never seen such terrible reviews. I phoned the reservations manager at Ballachulish and said we were not prepared to stay at such a terrible place. He assured me that it was under new management and that all the problems had been resolved.

On the day of our arrival we drove to the Ballachulish in the hope that they might have a cancellation. They didn't and I was told that all other hotels in the area were full. We then progressed to the replacement hotel. To describe it as a transport café is an insult to such places. It was feet off the main road, the reception area smelt of smoke, the dining area could barely be described as two star and I wouldn't have stayed there if we had been paid to.

As a courtesy I explained to the receptionist that we would not be staying and he looked completely confused and showed me six other registration forms for that night, ALL guests who had been bounced by Ballachulish.

Knowing that there was no other decent quality accommodation locally we put our foot down and drove for five hours to our next destination in Northumberland where we were fortunate to be able to extend our stay. Not the nice relaxing end to our holiday in Scotland that we had planned.

Ballachulish did offer a bottle of wine by way of compensation. It would have needed to be a CRATE!

Room Tip: Good luck if you get one!
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Stayed: August 2013, traveled as a couple
3  Thank Sue S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 22, 2013

After food four nights in dreadful hotels on the trafalgar tour of scotland, I wasn't expecting much. This hotel would be homey for the Adams Family. Tacky, old beds, creaky floors, every noise in next room, stingy with croissants. Beautiful views, near the ferries, too long a transport for our trip to the shrine.

  • Stayed: August 2013, traveled with friends
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Thank beachjhawk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Ballachulish Hotel

Address: Ballachulish | just off the main A82 Glasgow to Fort William Road, Ballachulish PH49 4JY, Scotland
Location: United Kingdom > Scotland > Scottish Highlands > Glencoe > Ballachulish
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 3 Hotels in Ballachulish
Price Range: $79 - $219 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Ballachulish Hotel 3*
Number of rooms: 53
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Also Known As:
Ballachulish Hotel Glencoe

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