The Old Barn
Apartment | 7 bedrooms | sleeps 16
The Old Barn at Ormidale has taken us nearly three years to complete and no expense has been spared in establishing it as the most luxurious of our stable of properties. A travertine marble floor runs throughout the ground floor and offers a stunning contrast to the original exposed stone walls which feature in the kitchen and living area.
Underfloor heating from an environmentally sustainable ground source heat pump provides constant heating through both floors of the property, which will accommodate up to 16 guests in total, with our maximum adult occupancy set at 12.
|Size||Sleeps up to 16, 7 bedrooms|
|Will consider||Corporate bookings, Long term lets (over 1 month), Short breaks (1-4 days)|
|Access||Car advised, Wheelchair users|
|Family friendly||Great for children of all ages, Suitable for people with restricted mobility|
|Notes||Pets welcome, No smoking at this property|
Features and Facilities
|Luxuries||Private indoor pool, Jacuzzi or hot tub, Sauna, Log fire, Internet access, DVD player|
|Pool||Private indoor pool|
|General||Central heating, Air conditioning, TV, Video player, CD player, Telephone, Pool or snooker table, Table tennis, Games room, Safe, Satellite TV, Wi-Fi available|
|Standard||Kettle, Toaster, Iron, Hair dryer|
|Utilities||Clothes dryer, Dishwasher, Cooker, Microwave, Fridge, Freezer, Washing machine|
|Rooms||7 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms of which 3 Family bathrooms|
|Furniture||Single beds (4), Double beds (6), Dining seats for 16, Lounge seats for 6|
|Outdoors||Private indoor pool, Balcony or terrace, Private garden, BBQ, Bicycles available|
|Further details indoors|
The six double / twin rooms upstairs are complemented by a bunk room for children and the downstairs TV room can convert into an additional double bedroom for extra guests, or if a party require a downstairs bedroom for an elderly or disabled couple.
Five of the bedrooms have wash-hand basins, and most have king size or super king beds. There is a downstairs loo and shower room, and a sauna. Two other bathrooms, featuring stunning floor to ceiling travertine tiles and corner jacuzzi baths, as well as powerful showers, are on the first floor.
he kitchen / breakfast room features an original exposed stone wall but is wonderfully light thanks to the large glass archway and door out to the private cobbled courtyard terrace. The kitchen cabinets are oak, and the granite work surface, stone Belfast sink and travertine marble floor, are complemented by Neff, Gaggia and Bosch kitchen appliances to underline the commitment to quality and to marrying genuine traditional materials to the most up-to-date facilities.
There is an American-style fridge freezer, single oven, double oven, microwave, halogen hob, large toaster and coffee machine. There is seating for up to eight around the expandable island unit in French polished oak. The kitchen gives way through an open exposed stone arch into the large sitting room with three sofas.
There is a separate TV room seating up to a dozen – which converts into a double bedroom – and a dining room, both floored in the same cream travertine marble tiles. The dining room table can accommodate eight or be expanded to take 14.
|Further details outdoors|
The gardens are gorgeous – lovely to explore and relaxing to be in. At the same time as the Scottish architect Robert Lorimer started on the house at the end of the nineteenth century, the gardens and grounds were laid out and landscaped by Thomas Mawson of Kendal, a major figure in Victorian Landscape gardening.
Set amidst the 20 acres of woodland, and enjoying lovely views across the glen and up the mountain, the gardens he designed are mainly laid to lawn and terrace with hydrangeas, rhododendron and azalea, as well as reputedly the tallest Grecian fir in Scotland.
Our own woods feature numerous tree species and adjoin thousands of acres of forestry commission land through which guests are welcome to wander. One of our terraces features a Grade A listed sundial.
A tributary of the river Ruel runs through the gardens, from the Lochen that supplies Ormidale’s private water supply. There is a lovely waterfall walk within the garden, and a rope-assisted climb down to a pool for outdoor bathing. It’s a fabulous location for kids.
We’ve added a trampoline, croquet set and football goal to what nature has provided as a playground, and we’ve installed two midge machines to keep the other type of annoying wee bu$$ers at bay!!
The Central Scotland/Strathclyde region
Although just an hour and a half from Glasgow, Ormidale sits in some of the loveliest scenery in Scotland. The Kyles of Bute are renowned amongst both walkers and sailors as amongst the most stunning bits of coast in Scotland. Whatever the weather in Argyll – and we do enjoy a remarkably mild micro-climate - this is great country for site seeing, with every corner revealing a new variation on the theme of mountain, loch, valley, sky, woodland, sea, rock, beach. The Cowal peninsula is a fabulous base for an active holiday with marvellous wildlife, numerous gardens and other tourist attractions to visit, and all sporting activities catered for.
Ormidale has grounds of 23 acres, and sits about a mile above the head of Loch Riddon, enjoying complete privacy and lovely views down the glen to the river Ruel. The Island of Bute itself is as little as 15 minutes away from the house – accessed via a ferry from Colintraive – and was a “must visit” destination long before Stella McCartney got married there or former racing driver Johnnie Dumfries moved into Mount Stuart House as the new Marquess of Bute.
Inverary with its famous Jail and Castle, seat of Clan Campbell for the last few hundred years, is only 45 minutes away, as is Loch Lomond. Dunoon is another tourist destination in its own right, and just under half an hour away. You can get to Glen Coe in an hour and a half, to Stirling, Oban or Fort William in under two. Loch Ness and Edinburgh are easy enough day trips – reachable in less than 2 and a half hours.
As well as general site-seeing and trips to the Island of Bute, Inverary and further afield, there are a host of other activities you can undertake around Glenaruel. It’s fabulous walking country and we’ve also provided twelve mountain bikes for those who want to explore on two wheels rather than four. There are some really excellent and quite varied routes direct from the house, involving all sorts of terrain and levels of strain!
Golf – there’s a lovely 9 hole pay and play course ten minutes away above Tighnabruaich. We’ve supplied five bags of golf clubs for the house and they probably won’t be too fussed about the usual rules re golf shoes provided you don’t arrive in jeans and carve the course up. The same applies to the almost equally spectacular nine hole course at Blairmore & Strone, half an hour away. Cowal Golf Club at Dunoon and Inellan are the 18 hole courses in the area that welcome visitors.
Fishing - too many options to go into here, but you can spend anything from £9 per day to over £1,000 for river fishing in the area. You can fish for trout in our own stream for nothing or in the Lochen at the head of the river. Mackerel on a line in a boat on the Kyles is a right of passage for hundreds of West of Scotland kids every year. They swim in shoals all around these waters – the mackerel, not the kids - and there’s no permit payable.
It’s a fabulous part of the world for water-sports of all sorts. Horse-riding, climbing, canoeing, caving, archery, quad biking, paint-balling, and clay pigeon shooting are also all available either on site or in the area. It’s not our thing, and the house ain’t full of antlers, but we can help you arrange a day’s grouse or pheasant shooting, or stalking in season, if some of your party want to do that.
There is a wee shop selling all the basics at the camp-site in the Glendaruel valley, about a mile’s walk away, beside the historic Kilmodan standing stones. You get a slightly bigger choice in the Spar at Tighnabruich five miles away, and all year round opening. Dunoon is 16 miles away and is a thriving market / harbour town with award-winning bakeries, cafes and butchers, as well as a big Co-Op and a big Somerfield supermarket.
Scotland isn’t really well served by pubs in general; this area is definitely an exception. The Glendaruel Hotel is a lovely wee pub, a two mile drive away – or about a mile and a quarter as the crow staggers – and serves good pub grub or better. The Colintraive Hotel and Tighnabruich Hotel are each a tad busier and a tad more ambitious in terms of menu. Chatters in Dunoon is highly recommended, and the Whistlefield and Coylet Inns on Loch Eck are also worth a visit. Our favourite restaurant in the entire universe is on Loch Fyne, overlooking the old Castle Lachlan. (The view from the Inver Cottage terrace is one of the Robbie Innes pictures on our drawing room wall.)
It’s less than half an hour away from the house. The Benmore Gardens tea room is not half bad, either, and the Otterferry Inn and Loch Fyne Oyster Bar have good reputations (on which, it might be said, they trade slightly…) All in all, though, there are few areas of Scotland where you can enjoy such a variety of excellent, reasonably priced menus.
Guest reviewsPowered by TripAdvisor
Guest reviews Powered by TripAdvisor
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27 Mar 2014
"Disappointing propery - very poor customer service"
We stayed in the property in mid February 2014.The property itself is a lovely building, but the interior is showing signs of wear and tear and could benefit from general upgrading, overall it was cle… More
We have undertaken a survey of the last year's guests in the Old Barn. We got 93% of respondents giving a 5 out of 5 rating and over 80% giving us an excellent value for money commendation. This beggars my belief as a review. The people reviewing it weren't clients of ours. While they were trying to get back a deposit that we couldn't track to our actual client, the actual client was persistently trying to get us to expedite a refund of the full booking amount - via an insurance company - because one member of one family couldn't attend. The upshot they were aiming for was a weekend party for 12 with a net spend of exactly zero. I think they actually achieved that, too. We were also told that everybody who had attended had loved the house and wanted to rebook.
Most of the complaint here seems to focus on my behaviour as owner, which is quite ironic, given that I did reluctantly go along with their request and thus ensured there was a free holiday for all concerned. The whole thing leaves a bit of an unpleasant taste in the mouth. The swimming pool is opened on demand to Old Barn guests whenever they like, in addition to the two hours a day privately reserved to the Old Barn guests. Only four hours per day are reserved to the other parties. New games equipment for the games cottage is constantly provided and replacements are always available, as our welcome folders make clear. As it happens, the property has been redecorated since these guests were in. On the rare occasions we get any negative comments, we always respond politely and apologetically. On this occasion I think we have been thoroughly traduced, and these people have been a little bit less than straightforward!
10 Sep 2013
"Great place for a social gathering"
We visted early in March to celebrate a big birthday. We wanted somewhere that was easly commutable for the weekend from the Central Belt, somewhere we could walk, talk and enjoy being away from the b… More
We are glad you enjoyed the weekend with us and we hope we'll see you again soon.
21 Mar 2013
"The Old Barn - the name says it all!"
This property is, indeed, an old barn. Draughty, dirty and mostly disappointing.We went for a friend's birthday and were dismayed by the state of the house - it was grubby, with dirty paintwork, … More
We had some problems with maintenance earlier this year, as a result of some very poor staff performance from late 2012. The staff have changed, the heating is working, the housekeeping standards are back up where they need to be and the response from guests has been positive. Even during the period this group had an unfortunate experience, we had some positive feedback from guests because they appreciate the amount of money we have spent equipping the place and making it lovely. Late 2012 and early 2013 have to go down as a blip and a dip. We tried and failed to improve performance with a management couple who were not up to the job. In the end that proved impossible. We now have the right people in place and are climbing again. We are sorry that anyone was disappointed.
20 Mar 2013
"Has potential, unfortunate experience"
The estate is lovely with its buildings and surround forestry. The beds ( I had a small double) was very comfortable with dressing gowns provided too. These were great for popping to the sauna, hot tu… More
I am glad they appreciated our facilities, including the new hot tub and dressing gowns, but obviously disappointed that we only merit three stars. The underfloor heating did have a wee problem that weekend, and we supplied portable heaters. We had more available. We'll get some additional draught excluders. We'll keep trying to justify more enthusiastic reviews...
12 Mar 2013
My friends an I stayed in the old barn for a weekend in February and had a great time. The living area was spacious and comfy. The kitchen was well equipped with everything we needed and there was ple… More
Thanks so much. Even at a time when we had some difficulties with staff we were still delivering a 5 out of 5 experience to some guests.
7 Mar 2013
"get away from it all....."
This was our 3rd visit to Ormidale - been to Mill House & the main house - so now stayed in each of the larger properties. We love the area - the children can run about and still use the pool in winte… More
13 Feb 2013
"Cold.dirty and uncomfortable!!!"
After driving 175 miles of winding roads to get to Ormidale I was so looking forward to relaxing with friends for the weekend...big disappointment! The first thing you notice is there are no outside l… More
We had real problems with this party - it is fair to say that they were not easy to deal with at any stage of the process. There were problems with the heating system (which gave them a legitimate grievance) and which have since been resolved. We gave them a very substantial discount and refund to reflect their dissatisfaction. This is a house that most of our guests absolutely love, and we get loads of repeat business. At any time of the year the house is toasty warm with underfloor heating on both floors. This review really doesn't reflect the quality of the house or the care and attention with which it is treated by the owners and staff. I am very sorry that they had a bad time, but can assure the TA community that their experience is a long way from typical. Two more recent visiting groups have offered to post positive reviews but neither of these have appeared, for some reason.
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