‘Isn’t that a rather expensive place to take a shower?’
Travelling in Fern the Campervan from Glasgow to Torridon in the north-west of Scotland I texted my dad. (The G-Force was driving.)
Looking forward to a night in the fabulous Torridon Hotel – and remembering that my parents had enjoyed a couple of nights at the luxury hotel as part of their 50th wedding anniversary celebration tour of the north-west of Scotland last October – I thought dad would like to know where we were headed.
I messaged him: “On our way to Torridon. 2 nights in Fern the Campervan, a night in The Torridon and then a night in the Torridon Inn. Munro bagging and cycling planned.”
His response was: “That’s an expensive place for a shower!”
He meant that after two days of walking and two nights sleeping in the van we would be in need of a shower – and The Torridon is not a cheap place to stay.
He was right in part. The hotel is expensive compared to our van or other hotels/B&Bs we might usually choose to stay in but it is one of those amazing places that is worth the money if you are in the mood for a fantastic treat.
Located in one of my favourite outdoors areas and looking out on to Loch Torridon and the stunning Liathach mountain – rated by many as one of Scotland’s finest ridge walks – The Torridon could not be better positioned.
While luxuriously decorated and offering highly perfected hospitality and superb fine dining, The Torridon does not feel overly pretentious or austere. The welcome from the staff is friendly and attentive and never over-bearing.
As an example, when we strolled into the hotel lobby wearing scruffy outdoor clothes, trainers, sun caps and carrying rucksacks, plus an opened bottle of Champagne, they did not bat an eyelid.
They even delivered two glasses and an ice bucket to the room once we had settled in. That was a nice touch.
The rooms are large and comfortable with proper bathrooms. Our ensuite had a stand-alone bath and shower. The beds are big hotel beds with sumptuous mattresses and luxurious bedding.
Indeed, my parents, who are well known in our family for finding something to complain about at a hotel, could find not a single fault with The Torridon. They seemed as surprised to report, as we were to hear, this fact.
“The food is expensive,” they said, “but then again it was very good.”
We enjoyed a four-course set menu (£60) and found that there was no need to worry about a dress code. “Smart casual” meant it was fine to wear smart jeans and a t-shirt if you wanted. If you preferred to get dressed up you would not look out of place, either. But it’s the guest’s choice.
I do think you often get what you pay for, although in this case we were fortunate enough to enjoy a courtesy trip for a night. My job was to report on the hotel and also the Munro bagging opportunities nearby.
This was not a tough task, I confess. Read about my Torridon Munro bagging weekend. If you want to be shown a few outdoor activities, The Torridon has a dedicated activity programme, including guided walks.
And, while dad’s comment was funny and we did enjoy a much-needed shower at the Torridon Hotel, we could also have found a free shower at the local Torridon campsite.
The Torridon campsite allows guests free camping and free use of the showers and toilets. Next time, after two nights in the van, we can head to the council-funded campsite for a free shower.
A night in the Torridon Inn, too
An alternative – and one that we enjoyed on our final night in Torridon – is to book a night in the neighbouring Torridon Inn. Still offering lovely large rooms and en-suites (less luxurious but still well above average standard in Scotland) and pub meals, the Inn is around £120 (B&B) per room.
I think our mix of van, posh hotel and comfortable inn over one long weekend ticked all the boxes we could ever have wished for. And we were very fortunate with the weather, too.
The G-Force and I have sometimes discussed where we might stay if we wanted a full-on treat weekend and we always agree on The Torridon. It’s a place of lovely memories for us – one of the first hotels we stayed in when we first got together – and in such a brilliant landscape.
Find out more at The Torridon.