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“A relaxing stay”

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The Cluny Bank Hotel
Ranked #1 of 3 Hotels in Forres
Certificate of Excellence
Dunfermline, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
157 reviews
35 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 127 helpful votes
“A relaxing stay”
Reviewed March 10, 2012

My wife and I another couple stayed two nights while visiting Forres to attend a friend's retirement party. We chose Cluny Bank Hotel based on Trip Advisor Reviews. In this case we found all the positive reviews to be completely accurate and can only agree with them. We were greeted by an enthusiastic and extremely friendly Loyd before we even left the car and he then carried our luggage to our room before showing us to the small cosy bar to join our already relaxed friends. There is a very good range of drinks available We found the company of Loyd and Julia so warm friendly and fun that we didnt return to our rooms but stayed in the bar until time for dinner.
Ah, the dinner. Difficult not to wax lyrical as you will see from other reviews. The dining room provides a large but intimate traditional space typical of the property style. The style is fine dining, with white linens and quality dining furniture. Service is friendly, attentive without being intrusive and very efficient. Space prevents going into every detail of the wonderful meal, but check out their menu and be assured it will taste as good as it sounds, whatever it is. I believe the menu changes approximately every six weeks or so. Some stars of the meal were: an amazing starter of mini suet pudding stuffed with oxtail; a delicious duck main dish which would have fed two in some restaurants, a beautifully prepared veal main, and a loin of wild hare that was simply heaven on a plate. As others have noted, be prepared for Loyd to come to the table and describe in enthusiastic detail the available puddings and how he prepares them. I think there were probably 5 available but unusually Loyd will mix and match ingredients or serve warm or cold to your wish. Personally I think that would be a mistake as his dishes are perfectly blended for the elements to complement each other but the option is there...amazing! We let Loyd go through the whole list, explaining ingredients, methods etc before asking what the first one was again.........it's an example of how relaxed and friendly you come to feel there that you can joke like that in what as I said above is a fine dining restaurant.
The standard is maintained for breakfasts that provide for all anyone could wish. The fresh blackcurrants, raspeberries and blueberries with yoghurt followed by a choice from a wide range of cooked options gives an idea.
We all found our rooms to be cosy, spotlessly clean and well supplied with good toiletries, towels and tea and coffee making facility. The rooms are accurately presented on the website but its reasonable to set your expectations that this is a traditional style building and so some compromise has to be made in order to provide the excellent amenities it does.
The car park is small but adequate with steep stairs up to the hotel, but you can take your car right up to the door when necessary.
So, our experience was one of relaxation, friendliness, wonderful food and great service during our stay. To top it all it is walking distance to the golf club from where we walked back at night quite late with keys provided to get back in to the hotel.
Loyd is quite mad I am sure, but in the nicest way, a lot of fun and a true genius as a chef. How Julia runs the business, serves bar, dinners, breakfasts and attends reception duties while reigning Loyd in must be a modern day example of a small miracle.
But to be serious, this is a wonderful small business providing individual service, comfortable accommodation and some of the best food you will get anywhere. Excellent value.
We will certainly be back.

Room Tip: Balchins den has it's own entrance and is in an attached annexe. Pets are allowed in this room.
See more room tips
  • Stayed March 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank Fifer7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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217 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
  • Location
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (31)
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English first
suffolk
Level Contributor
6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed February 28, 2012

I love this place, luckily for me I have to visit this area twice or more a year for work and I can't think of a better place to stay in the UK.

Lloyd and Jules are a amazingly friendly couple, that will do anything to make sure you enjoy your stay, Lloyd even ask me what my favorite cut of beef was and went to the butcher and cook me it.

hotelier should stay and make note, of the way these two make this hotel feel like home.

  • Stayed January 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank SuffolkHappysleeper
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fife
Level Contributor
37 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed February 21, 2012

What can i say that hasnt already been said! We booked a two night DBB break last weekend. A lovely victorial hotel with a homely feel. From the minute that you arrive you are made to feel that you are a personal guest, and nothing is too much trouble. we stayed in the master bed room, a lovely warm room overlooking the gurden, and it was well worth the little extra money for the space. The bar area is relaxing a cosy, but I would have loved still to have a real fire rather than a gas 'real fire' effect, but full undersand that this must be much easier when there are only two people running the hotel..
The web site highlights the dinner menu, and, as 'foodies' we were not disappointed. The food was well cooked, tasty and satisfying (no ponsy wee portions here!!) and I liked the fact Lloyd uses local suppliers as much a possible. the highlight of the meal has to be the dessert - nothing is written on the menu and Lloyd comes to the table to describe each option in delicious detail. (the creme brulee was one of the best that I have tasted )
Breakfast is as substantial as you want it, and nothing is too much bother.
All in all, this Hotel is a great option if visiting the area, and we will definitly be back.

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
Thank Christine E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Oslo, Norway
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed February 7, 2012

What an amazing place to stay! What a gorgeous building! Jules and Lloyd sure know how to take care of you. Excellent service, charming room, (we stayed in Balchin's den, the dog-friendly room with our 2 Tibetan Temple dogs), and truly exquisite food. Lloyd knows his way about the kitchen and wowed us with his delicious desserts.

If we're ever back Forres way, we will definitely be staying here again.

  • Stayed January 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank erikjustus
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Madrid
Level Contributor
21 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed February 2, 2012

As I planned to visit Lossiemouth, I looked for a good accomodation in the near, and Forres was perfect. But I was pleasantly surprised with my choice. The building itself is very nice and very well maintained. The rooms were very nice arranged and each of them different from the other. And then...the last pleasant surprise: the food was excellent, very well prepared and lovely presented. As I mentioned to Julia, "his husband Lloyd not only loves cooking but he lives it," and it was apparent. He gave details about the way he had prepared every meal and, moreover they were all delicious. All in all, there was a round trip and Julia and Lloyd contributed with their hospitality and familiarity to a home-like feeling.

  • Stayed June 2011, traveled on business
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Helpful?
Thank Jose032
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Elgin, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed January 16, 2012

We stay locally and are always looking for a new restaurant to try for special occasions, this time we've come up trumps!
The food is exceptional, prices on the high side locally but when you compare a starter here at around £7-8 and find other local hotels charging £6 for significantly poorer quality food, it really is superb value for money.
I would highly recommend this for anyone looking for a quiet break and exceptional food, you won't be dissappointed.

  • Stayed January 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank bonnie_lass186558
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Angus, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
52 reviews
27 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
Reviewed November 20, 2011

From the minute we arrived we felt at home here. Lloyd and Julia made us most welcome and nothing was too much trouble. The room was beautifully decorated and so peaceful. The hotel itself is stunning but the gems are Lloyd and Julia. The food which Lloyd produces is absolute heaven on a plate. I could wax lyrical for hours on what a talent Lloyd is. Julia appears to glide on a cloud of calmness, quietly ensuring that everything is just right for all her guests.
We've eaten all over the world in many 5 star hotels etc but we can honestly say this has to be the best food we have ever tasted.
We'll be back for sure.

  • Stayed November 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank redrose59
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Cluny Bank Hotel

Property: The Cluny Bank Hotel
Address: 69 St. Leonards Road, Forres IV36 1DW, Scotland
Phone Number:
Location: United Kingdom > Scotland > Moray > Forres
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 3 Hotels in Forres
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — The Cluny Bank Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 7
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A Small Hotel (Restaurant with Rooms, really) set in the best residential area of Forres, Moray. There are lots of activities within easy reach of the hotel such as golf, the world famous Malt Whisky Trail, castles, beaches and much more. Inverness is only 30 miles (airport 25 miles) away and there are many places of interest which can be reached. We have an extremely good reputation for food as you will see from the reviews. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Cluny Bank Hotel
The Cluny Bank Hotel Forres, Scotland

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