|Serge and Cathy outside the Lamlash Bay Hotel|
Lamlash Bay is a few miles South of the port of Brodick on the Scottish Island of Arran. It’s a very picturesque village with a stunning view out to Holy Island, a smaller landmass, which rises out of the sea in the middle of the bay, like a Brigadoon that might disappear at any moment.
The Lamlash Bay Hotel is a shore front, family run, dog friendly hotel, with a unique panoramic view over the bay to the magical Holy Isle.
|Holy Isle – a jewel in the Bay|
The building was constructed in the 1920’s and the hotel was bought two years ago by Serge and Meg el Adm who have updated things, redecorated, and are happy to provide a very warm welcome to new and returning visitors. Meg is originally from Arran but had spent nearly two decades living in Bahrain and Singapore, where she worked for Gulf Airlines. I asked if she was missing the sunshine but she said no – she insisted that she was glad to leave the heat behind, and get out her scarves and woollies after so many years in the sun!
The hotel’s decor has of lots muted colours with a palette of greys, creams and pale blues. There are lots of colourful artworks from local artists everywhere, and accented Scottish touches just to remind you of your location.
All rooms are en-suite and free wifi is available throughout the hotel. The bar lounge stocks a wide range of beers, ales and malts and an impressive collection of gins and vodkas too.
|The bar at the Lamlash Hotel|
The bistro style restaurant serves delicious freshly cooked meals and home made pizzas from the stone based oven.
We had some excellent Sea bass and king prawns on garlic crushed potatoes with a creamy leek sauce. As per usual, I could not resist dessert and the double salted caramel Arran ice cream in a brandy basket was definitely worth the calories!
We stayed in the ground floor apartment apartment at the side of the hotel which has its own entrance and parking available outside. It is very spacious with a lounge, dining area and kitchenette area, and two bedrooms (one with a double bed, the other with 2 twin beds) and an en-suite shower room.
The view from the hotel is really quite special and we spent quite a lot of time photographing it, trying to catch the rainbows on the water, and capture the ever changing skies, including a dramatic sunrise.
Holy Isle has an ancient spiritual heritage stretching back to the 6th century and guests can stay at the retreat on the island from April to October. There’s also a hermit’s cave and healing spring and you can also stay at the old boathouse hotel. We chatted to Mark Nelson, a local lifeboat man who told us all about their rescues that year which were often of walkers who had fallen off the mountains and landed up on the beach.
It turns out that their lifeboat could get around the island much more quickly than the mountain rescue teams! Mark liked this time of year he said, because it was quiet and the Autumn colours were at their best.
We wandered through the village past the Drift Inn which had a small blackboard outside saying ‘roaring fire and hot mulled cider.’ We didn’t need to be asked twice! The fire was a peat fire which made it especially bright and hot and the warm mulled cider was enough to chase the cold away altogether. There aren’t many better ways to spend a chilly Autumn afternoon.
We enjoyed a tasty Scottish breakfast before heading off to board the bus to the port, to catch the ferry back to the mainland. Everything on the island revolves around the ferry and its crossing times. There are five crossings a day in the winter and ten in the summer, and all the buses sync up with this timetable.
|Full Scottish breakfast – yum!|
Lamlash is an excellent base from which to explore Arran, which is often referred to as Scotland in Miniature and the Lamlash Bay Hotel has just the right balance of friendliness, good food, lovely rooms and a very special island vista. It was my favourite place I stayed on this charming Scottish destination and if you go to Arran you really must pay a visit! check out their website here Lamlash Bay Hotel
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