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wedding venues Scotland - Balinakill Country House Argyll

  number of bedrooms 26+ free wifi pet friendly hotel
Weekly prices Low £3790 Mid £3990 High £4290 Festive £5490-£5590
Short breaks - 2 nights + Low £2400 Mid £2600 High £2800  
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Vernon's review of Balinakill Country House
Self Catering Argyll

 

wedding venues Scotland - Balinakill Country House, Kintyre, Argyll - sleeps 26+

Along Loch Lomond, up Loch Fyne and down again, past Inverary and Lochgilphead, down to Tarbert then alongside another loch to the small village of Clachan on the Kintyre Peninsula come babes in arms, sassy teenagers, tired young parents and leisured retirees, converging from far flung origins to celebrate the momentous occasion of a family golden wedding. What a wonderful journey - and less than half a day's drive from Glasgow and Edinburgh.

Once we get to Clachan, it's no distance along a quiet, tree-lined road to the beautiful Scottish mansion house where we'll be spending time acquainting ourselves with new arrivals, exchanging news, relaxing and most importantly, celebrating a marriage which has firmly stood the test of time. As our small convoy of cars moves up the drive, it does feel rather like a wedding procession, although there are no white ribbons and we're rather under dressed.

With its smart golden sandstone, crenelations, cupola window and wonderful classical portico, Balinakill Country House is a grand sight, built to impress in the late nineteenth century by ship owner Sir William MacKinnon and we are duly impressed! Sleepy children can hardly believe their eyes when they realise that this is actually their home for a week and race off to explore inside and out, leaving us to stretch our legs and take in the house at a more leisurely pace.

The interior is as impressive as the outside - the perfect combination of luxurious and homely, with rooms to suit everyone and every occasion: wood panelled sitting room, bright, spacious sun room, tv room and formal and informal dining rooms. The children loved spending time in the playroom, full of novel toys and games, as well as rushing round and round the garden and house, up and down the stairs, out through one door and in through another. For those of us less inclined to rush about, there has always been a quiet room in which to sit and relax, undisturbed.

The lovely, quiet beach is only half a mile away, so young and old have spent time enjoying sea air, sand castles, picnics and paddling and just up the hill is an ancient hill fort to explore, with a good view and the chance of spotting deer from the top. We even tried geocaching (look it up!), which was great fun and really had some of us hooked.

We haven't ventured far and we haven't needed to. The house is so lovely, it would be a shame not to enjoy it to the full and after all, this is a family get-together, so we've been doing a lot of getting together, over meals around the huge dining table, over drinks in the lovely garden, over after dinner coffee in the gorgeous sitting room...

The grand finale of all the get-togethers was the golden anniversary itself, for which we decided to bring in the professionals - everything was laid on, from food to drink to enertainment for the children. I shall have a lasting memory of us all in our very best, drinking a toast to the 'bride and groom' while the smaller members of the clan rush around in their glad rags with their faces painted up as tigers, butterflies and vampires, courtesy of Lori at Funky Chicken Fun!

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Further details about this accommodation

Balinakill Country House has twelve main bedrooms with their own bathrooms - ten double and two twin - as well as a small double bed and toddler bed in the childrens' playroom with bathroom opposite and extra beds stored for use as needed.

Ground floor:
Vestibule leading to main entrance hall and sun room with French windows opening onto large patio; catering kitchen; living room; bar and bar lounge; kitchen and informal dining room; formal dining room; double bedroom with bathroom; wc.

First floor:
Six double bedrooms with ensuite bathrooms; laundry; living room; children's playroom, well stocked with toys and games.

Second floor:
Two double bedrooms with ensuite bathrooms; one double and one twin bedroom with ensuite shower rooms; one twin bedroom with ensuite bathroom.

Catering:
Kintyre has a wealth of high quality local produce which can be easily sourced from Balinakill. Deliveries of fish, shellfish, organic meat and locally grown vegetables can be arranged for guests who choose to self-cater.
Clachan village store is happy to take orders in advance for local meat, fresh vegetables and non-perishable goods, beers, wines and spirits (and newspapers!).
The Argyll brewery, Fyne Ales; http://www.fyneales.com/, can deliver a barrel of real ale prior to your arrival (pipes in the bar) in order to give it time to settle.
Alternatively, Balinakill offers a choice of 5 local outside catering agencies who provide a full range of catering services from breakfasts, light lunches and buffets to formal 5 course dinners and celebration banquets. Just let us know what you are looking for and we will happily provide a selection of sample menus from which you can choose. During your stay you can arrange for all meals to be provided, opt for one special celebratory meal, choose to be fully self catering or opt for a combination of both.


Our top five things to do while staying at Balinakill Country House
self catering in scotland walking

This is a lovely area for walking, with wonderful sea views. The Kintyre Way, which runs from from Tarbert in the north to Dunaverty in the south, crosses the whole Kintyre Peninsula and can be covered in small sections or completed in a few days.
The nearby island of Gigha with its lovely, deserted beaches, is a beautiful, quiet place to walk and enjoy a picnic.

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Mull of Kintyre Seatours in Cambelltown offer boat trips around Kintyre and to Arran, Ailsa Craig, the Firth of Clyde, Sanda Island and Northern Ireland. They also take wildlife-watching tours to Sanda to see the seal colony, puffins and many other seabirds, to Ailsa Craig with its 70,000 gannets, and on calm mid-summer days, whale-watching in Kilbrannan Sound.

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Kintyre boasts some of the most scenic golf courses in the world, set in outstanding coastal locations. There are over thirty courses in the area so you will be spoilt for choice: try Carradale, with its panoramic views across Kilbrannan Sound, the small, family friendly course on Gigha, the natural, challenging dunes course at Machrahanish, or the picturesque course at Dunaverty, to name just a few.

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For a lovely day out visit Glenbarr Abbey and the MacAlister Clan Visitors' Centre in Glenbarr in the west of Kintyre. Tours around the house are conducted personally by Jeanne Macalister, Lady Glenbarr.
The abbey has lovely grounds with riverside and woodland walks, a museum, gift shop, teas and coffees, picnic facilities and free parking. Glenbarr Abbey is open to the public daily from Easter to Mid October between 11am to 4pm, but is closed on Monday and Tuesday.

self catering scotland good food The distinctive art deco Muneroy Tearoom in Southend offers good home baking and freshly prepared meals in beautiful surroundings. For delicious seafood and an interesting vegetarian menu try the Cafe Barge, moored at Tarbert. Scott's Bistro, overlooking the fishing quay in Tarbert, has a wide variety of imaginative dishes, including many tasty seafood dishes.