Dine and drink alfresco this summer at these Luxury Scotland properties
There are few things more relaxing than sitting outside on a warm day, sipping a drink and devouring good food while soaking up the sun. It's even better when you add the spectacular Scottish scenery into the mix.
Many Luxury Scotland properties have expanded their outdoor bar, restaurant and brasserie options, just in time for summer. If you want to sit alfresco, here are the best places to do it.
Isle of Eriska Hotel terrace
Isle of Eriska Hotel, Spa & Island
With its stunning location on a private island near Oban, the Isle of Eriska Hotel, Spa & Island is a destination in itself. Sit down at one of The Deck restaurant's outdoor tables and take in the sweeping views over the island of Lismore to the hills of Kingairloch beyond. While you're there, you can tuck into dishes from the informal brasserie style menu. Snack on juicy gordal olives and truffle & parmesan fries, or enjoy something more substantial such as steak frites and smoked salmon salad.
Dunstane Houses garden
The newly created Dunstane Garden, at Dunstane Houses is a true hidden gem in the west end of Edinburgh. Sit out in front of the Victorian townhouse and find a table, relax in a deckchair or lounge in a hammock. A special garden cocktail menu features summery drinks like strawberry lemonade and rosemary gin fizz. Team your tipple with a snack from the seasonal, Scottish and locally sourced food menu –featuring dishes such as haggis fritters and Orkney beef burgers. For a real treat, book in for afternoon tea or a gin tasting experience.
Tucked into the south west corner of Scotland, just three miles from picturesque Portpatrick, discover Knockinaam Lodge, a former shooting lodge offering a secluded location to enjoy a bite to eat. Relax in the peace of the private cove, looking out to the Irish Sea as you indulge in a leisurely lunch, afternoon tea or drinks. With 30 acres of stunning landscaped ground stretching down to the beach, there’s plenty of space for a post-lunch stroll. Or you can just relax and appreciate the fabulous surroundings.
Glenapp Castle glasshouse
Lunch, dinner and afternoon tea at Glenapp Castle comes with a side order of incredible views. The castle's sprawling thirty-six acre grounds and new Glasshouse Restaurant overlook the Firth of Clyde, out to the iconic Ailsa Craig. Take time to explore before or after you eat, strolling the carefully tended lawns and pathways, surrounded by a vast array of exotic plants that have been collected since Victorian days. Visit the stunning walled garden, and the Italian garden designed by Gertrude Jekyll –one of the best-renowned garden designers of the early 20th century.
The Machrie Hotel & Golf Links on the Isle of Islay
The Machrie Hotel & Golf Links
Elevated on the hotel's first floor, the impressive '18' restaurant offers panoramic south-westerly views over The Machrie's famous Links course down to Laggan Bay on the whisky island of Islay. Gaze over the crystal blue sea while enjoying dinner or a sunset aperitif on the large outdoor terrace. If it's a bit chilly, head inside. The indoor section of the restaurant is capped by a vaulted glass ceiling, so you still feel the benefit of sitting under the sky.
Airds Hotel terrace
If you decide to try wild swimming in Loch Linnhe this month, Airds Hotel is the perfect place to warm up afterwards. Following a bracing dip, perch yourself at one of the tables spread throughout the terrace and garden, which has tranquil views over the loch to the Morvern mountains in the background. Sip a hot drink or, for something more substantial, opt for a luxury afternoon tea accompanied by warm scones, home-made jam and handmade finger sandwiches.