Douneside House

Tarland, Aberdeenshire

A 'paradise for foodies and garden lovers in a tranquil corner of Aberdeenshire', this country-house hotel in the fertile Howe of Cromar is an architectural gem. More

Good Hotel Guide Review

A 'paradise for foodies and garden lovers in a tranquil corner of Aberdeenshire', this country-house hotel in the fertile Howe of Cromar is an architectural gem. The Edwardian Scottish Revival country house is owned by the charitable MacRobert Trust, set up by Lady MacRobert after the baronetcy died with her three sons in flying tragedies before and during WW2. There is a sense of peace and grace in public rooms, painted in gentle, traditional hues and filled with family portraits and mementos. Bedrooms are a blend of classic and contemporary style. There are dog-friendly apartments, and cottages a short walk away. A reader loved their 'cosy and beautifully warm room', which was 'comfortably furnished with modern lighting', with home-made dog biscuits. You can dine in the conservatory, looking out over 'immaculately maintained' grounds with stream, rock pools, infinity lawn and beech walk, or in the intimate, candlelit Library for a tasting menu with wine flight. Fruit and veg from the walled kitchen garden appear on both menus. 'Staff were meticulous.' Military guests are offered a discount, and all have use of the health club. (Robert Gower)

Hotel details


AB34 4UL


01339 881230


23. 9 in cottages, 4 apartments, 2 cottages suitable for disabled.


all year excl. 2 weeks Jan, closed Mon, Tues Nov–Mar.


bar, wine bar, piano lounge, 2 restaurants (veg menu), in-room TV, wedding facilities, health centre (12.5m pool, tennis), 17-acre grounds, EV charging, public areas wheelchair accessible, adapted toilet.

Background music

in bar, restaurants.


all ages welcomed, cots free, extra bed £35, children's menu, play park.


allowed in cottages, apartments (£25 per stay), not main building.

Credit cards

MC, Visa.


B&B doubles from £260, singles from £243. Dinner (Conservatory) £25-£35 (2/3 courses), tasting menu (Library, Wed–Sun) £85.

Other reviews

The Hotel Guru

Comments about Douneside House

An amazing experience!!! Quality in every respect, accommodation. location, views / walks, and the food! Well the best I have ever tasted!! Excellent staff and the history of the place is so very interesting. - - January 2020
First-rate cooking; each course was mouthwatering. Finely judged portion control, so that we enjoyed pudding. Our room in a nearby, separate building was excellent for dogs, with ground-floor access and a good drying porch. Well designed shower room. Stunning grounds, meticulously maintained. But beware the muzak, which - as I told them - does the place no favours. , - Pauline Gower - September 2019
Top of the range in every respect. Fittings of the highest quality and taste. Beautiful grounds. Dinner was wonderful. Breakfast promptly and courteously served. - Robert Gower - September 2018
A wonderful place to stay on Royal Deeside. Beautiful location, gardens, leisure centre, good food, friendly service, and the view across the lawn from our room was probably the best we have ever enjoyed - Philip Bright - September 2017

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