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“Fantastic Family Run Hotel”

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Dornoch Castle Hotel
Ranked #2 of 6 Hotels in Dornoch
Certificate of Excellence
West Linton, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
10 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Fantastic Family Run Hotel”
Reviewed May 11, 2013

Had a lovely 2 night break in early May this year. Room was extremely comfortable, food delicious (we had dinner, bed and breakfast) and service excellent. We particularly enjoyed chatting to the 2 brothers that ran the hotel about the massive range of whiskies they have in the bar, and enjoyed sampling some of the malts even more! The brothers were very wiling to share their enormous experience on whisky with us. The ambiance of the hotel is very relaxing, we would loved to have stayed longer. We were also impressed that they clearly understand they are an important part of a small community as well. We wouldn't hesitate to go back.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank jacqui_halliwell
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
dornochcastle, Front Office Manager at Dornoch Castle Hotel, responded to this review, May 18, 2013
Dear Jacqui_Halliwell,

Thank you for taking the time to review your recent stay at the Dornoch Castle Hotel.

We are delighted to hear that you enjoyed all aspects of your stay. The hotel always tries to create a relaxing atmosphere that helps guests to unwind and enjoy themselves whilst on holiday. Our staff work hard to ensure that all of our guests and customers receive excellent food and service and we are very pleased to hear that you found this to be the case.

The two brothers, Simon and Phil, have an extensive knowledge of whisky and all things related to it. They are able to recommend a whisky for anyone’s palette. The hotel has a large selection of whiskies including local, old, rare and unusual whiskies.
We hope to welcome you back to the Dornoch Castle Hotel soon.

Kind regards,
All of the staff at Dornoch Castle Hotel
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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759 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (144)
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scotland
Level Contributor
49 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 126 helpful votes
Reviewed May 9, 2013

We live locally so can't comment on the sleeping accommodation. However we have the occasional lunch and drink as the ambience is pleasant. Portions are never excessive and can be a bit too much 'nouveau cuisine' in presentation, but always the quality and flavour are excellent (even the house burger!) What we like best are the splendid guest beers they have in, one or two at a time, especially the Happy Chappie bitter from Cromarty Brewery.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank scouser99
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
dornochcastle, Front Office Manager at Dornoch Castle Hotel, responded to this review, May 18, 2013
Dear Scouser69,
Thank you for taking the time to review your experience of the Dornoch Castle Hotel.

It is lovely to hear that you return to the hotel for lunch and drinks every so often. Presentation is an important aspect of our dishes and we always aim to make sure that our dishes look as good as they taste! In the summer months we aim to have two guest ales on and these vary on a regular basis. We pride ourselves on being able to offer our guests draft real ale as this is not something that is available in many places in the area.

We look forward to welcoming you back to the Dornoch Castle Hotel in the near future.

Kind regards,
All of the staff at Dornoch Castle Hotel
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
Reviewed May 6, 2013 via mobile

My boyfriend and I stayed in Dornoch castle as a treat to ourselves in march this year. We were delighted with our stay. The staff were extremely friendly from arrival & showing us to our lovely room and the service throughout was excellent. We also had a meal in the hotel which was lovely & service was good. The restaurant decor is very traditional Scottish which suits the castle very well. Even the bowls, salt & pepper sets were Scottish (tain pottery) which was a nice touch. We enjoyed reading the morning papers infront of the burning log fire. Would highly recommend Dornoch castle for a relaxing night away.

  • Stayed March 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank HeatherM1988
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
dornochcastle, Front Office Manager at Dornoch Castle Hotel, responded to this review, May 18, 2013
Dear HeatherM1988,

Thank you for your kind review of the Dornoch Castle Hotel. We are very pleased to hear that you enjoyed your stay with us. Our staff are always friendly and welcoming to ensure that you can enjoy your stay with us from the very beginning. The chef is delighted to hear that the meal was lovely.

Our bar offers a large open fire which is lit on the colder days and evening and papers are always available for customers and guests to read. The bar offers a large range of whiskies, various gins and other spirits and real ale. It also makes for a great stop for teas, coffees, hot chocolate or other hot drinks.

We hope you will return to stay with us in the near future.

Kind regards,
All of the staff at Dornoch Castle Hotel
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Stamford, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
28 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
Reviewed May 3, 2013

My wife and i were in Dornoch for one night staying at the Burghfield House , we decided to try the Dornoch castle for a meal I wish i hadn't bothered we both had fillet steak , and it was absolutely tasteless good size steak and quite well cooked,but we were very disappointed with it ,as it was scottish beef which is usualy extreamly good .Not here really think the steak had been frozen before and thawed out just before cooking. Shall not be returning.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank TheBulls008
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
dornochcastle, Front Office Manager at Dornoch Castle Hotel, responded to this review, May 14, 2013
Dear Thebulls008,

I was disappointed to read your review.

Our front of house staff always check back on diners to ensure that if there are ever any problems with a meal that we can act swiftly to rectify this. Your table was no exception and when you were checked back on you told the member of staff that your meal was fine, as did your companion. It was only when you had finished your meal and eaten all of the steak that you then said there was a problem with it. There is always at least one member of staff available in the restaurant and you could have spoken to them between being checked and finishing your meal if you discovered a problem in this time. We would have offered to cook another steak for you or provided you with an alternative dish at no extra cost.

Our beef is hung for 30 days and comes from one of the best butchers in Scotland. It is cut fresh and cooked to order; it is most definitely not frozen!

Regards,
All of the staff at Dornoch Castle Hotel
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Elora, Canada
Level Contributor
271 reviews
52 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 79 helpful votes
Reviewed May 1, 2013 via mobile

We stayed at Dornoch castle in late April. We choose the Old Courtroom room which had 20 foot ceilings, massive fireplace, 4 poster bed, which made us feel like we were back in the 15th century.

I was very surprised at the quality of the food, 4 star for sure.... so if you want a once in a lifetime experience as to what it was like to stay in a 15th century castle and be treated like a King & Queen....make the drive north of Inverness to Dornoch Castle!

  • Stayed April 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Brawnetml
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
dornochcastle, Front Office Manager at Dornoch Castle Hotel, responded to this review, May 15, 2013
Dear Brawnetml,

Thank you for your recent review of the Dornoch Castle Hotel.

The Old Court room is one of our most popular rooms and with good reason; it has a king sized four poster bed, Jacuzzi bath, high ceilings, dark wood, a functioning fireplace and a true castle feel to it.

Our restaurant has been awarded 1 rosette for a number of years and our chefs work hard to ensure that every meal is of the highest standard. We are delighted to hear that you enjoyed your meal and stay with us and hope that you will return soon.

Kind regards,
All of the staff at Dornoch Castle Hotel
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Madrid, Spain
Level Contributor
198 reviews
42 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 67 helpful votes
Reviewed May 1, 2013

We were traveling South towards Inverness and needed a room for the night. Dornoch is one of the few quaint villages around, and as we wanted to visit a distillery next day, decided to try for a room at this hotel. Were received by an extremely friendly young man who showed us the room they had available. A bit high to climb (3 sets of stairs) but very comfortable. It was, in fact a family room with 2 bedrooms and a bathroom. As we were only two, the added space made it even more comfortable. Luggage was not an issue, as the 2 brothers that seem to run the place carried everything upstairs. Had tea at the bar...very cosy with a log fire. Dinner was very tasty, great mussels and venison ..all sourced locally. We then went to the bar, where one of the brothers recommended a malt...smooth and superb !! He also recommended we visit the Balblair distillery the next day. We did this and found it fantastic. You can bottle your own 1992 malt bottle !! Overall a very pleasant experience !!

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Perrel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
dornochcastle, Front Office Manager at Dornoch Castle Hotel, responded to this review, May 15, 2013
Dear Perrel,

Thank you for your recent review of the Dornoch Castle Hotel.

Our staff always aim to be friendly and welcoming to ensure that you enjoy your stay with us from the moment you step through the front door.

Room 12 is a lovely family suite room consisting of a king size four poster bed, en suite bathroom and an adjoining room.

We source all of our produce as locally as possible and our chefs enjoy creating an interesting and appealing menu for our guests and customers. The mussels and venison are particularly popular and we are pleased to hear that you enjoyed them both!

We are glad to hear that you enjoyed your visit to Balblair distillery and recommend it to anyone that has an interest in Whisky. There are a few other distilleries in the local area to visit as well and all are within a 30 minute drive from the hotel.

We hope to see you in the near future.

Kind regards,
All of the staff at Dornoch Castle Hotel
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Moray, Scotland
Level Contributor
268 reviews
74 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 190 helpful votes
Reviewed April 18, 2013 via mobile

I've stayed here before with business and enjoyed it, so returned with my family. Initial welcome was friendly and welcoming. Rooms were a little dated but clean and spacious and met our needs. I really liked the choice of courses in the restaurant as I could have chosen several: we liked the mussels, scallops, venison, steak and chicken. Bar staff were great. There is an excellent range of whiskies and real ale on tap. The bar manager was splendid - he had a great knowledge of whiskey and was able to recommend some lovely drams at reasonable prices. Breakfast was a little average without any standout items and probably the only slight disappointment in the overall experience. The attitude of the staff made this 5 star - they were very very good

Stayed April 2013, traveled with family
Helpful?
Thank Boondoggler
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
dornochcastle, Front Office Manager at Dornoch Castle Hotel, responded to this review, April 23, 2013
Good Evening Boondoggler,

Thank you for your recent review of the Dornoch Castle Hotel.

We are pleased to hear that you liked our menu; our chefs aim to offer as wide a variety as possible so that there is something for everyone.

We are delighted that you consider the attitude of the staff to be a major contributing factor in your overall experience. Our staff aim to make each customers experience at the Dornoch Castle Hotel a pleasant and enjoyable one.

The bar has a large and interesting range of whiskies and our bar staff have a keen interest in whisky and this allows them to recommend the most suitable type of whisky for any palette.
We look forward to welcoming you back in the near future.

Kindest regards,
All of the staff at the Dornoch Castle Hotel
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 Dornoch Castle Hotel

Property: Dornoch Castle Hotel
Address: Castle Street, Dornoch IV25 3SD, Scotland
Location: United Kingdom > Scotland > Scottish Highlands > Caithness and Sutherland > Dornoch
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 6 Hotels in Dornoch
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Dornoch Castle Hotel 3*
Number of rooms: 22
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Castle is located in the historic town of Dornoch across from the stunning 13th century Cathedral, boasting stunning views of the town. The central position of the hotel makes it ideal for exploring Dornoch, home to the world famous Royal Dornoch Golf Course, which overlooks the breath taking golden sand beach. Dornoch is also well situated for those looking to explore more of what the Highlands have to offer. The historic Castle is built on the site of the original Bishop’s Palace of St Gilbert, who founded the Cathedral in the early 13th century. The building eventually sold on and in 1947 became a hotel after some extensive work, which maintain much of the character of the Castle as a stately, historic and comfortable home. The Castle boasts a total of 22 en-suite bedrooms situated both within the original castle and the modern garden extension. There is a variety of room types available including; standard, superior, deluxe and our award winning Old Courtroom. Due to the castle’s layout each bedroom has its own special ambiance, great care has been taking in creating a distinctive character in each bedroom. The Castle's restaurant has retained an AA rosette standard, through the exceptional work from the chefs. The malt whisky selection is second to none and can be enjoyed in the cosy stone-lined whisky bar with the roaring fire to protect you from the Scottish winds, in the summer the walled garden is the perfect setting to relax during the long summer nights. Coming Summer 2016: The Dornoch Distillery will be opening soon on the grounds of the Dornoch Castle Hotel producing 'Old Style' Whisky and Hand Crafted Organic Gin from scratch. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Dornoch Castle Hotel Scotland

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