Anglers reaping the rewards at Raemoir House Hotel
The tide of success is flowing fast and strong for Raemoir House Hotel at Banchory, and its owners give a lot of the credit to the Dee. Its fast becoming a favourite haunt for visiting anglers looking for a great hotel which delivers top quality service, value and culinary excellence.
“Being on Royal Deeside is one of our main advantages and to some extent explains why we have done so well in such a very short time,” said Neil Rae who owns the 20 bedroom hotel with his wife Julie.
The Raes’ successes have been among the most remarkable in the Scottish hospitality industry. They only bought Raemoir in 2010 yet in the next two years it captured the title of Scotland’s Best Country House Hotel – the first time that double had ever been achieved.
In the 2013 Scottish Hotel of the Year Awards Raemoir won the Chefs’ Team category and the North East Regional categories for top Country House and top Romantic Hotel. It was one of three shortlisted for the 2013 Scottish Rural Restaurant of the Year and is a finalist in the 2013-14 AA Wine Awards.
Its Executive Chef, David Littlewood, won the 2013 Scottish Chef of the Year competition at ScotHot, the country’s biggest catering and hospitality show. Judges in the competition in Glasgow included world famous chef Albert Roux. “David impressed us in every aspect,” President of the Scottish Chefs’ Federation Kevin MacGillivray summed up afterwards on behalf of the judges.
A Masterchef of Great Britain, David has won numerous other accolades including Grampian Young Chef of the Year in 2002, Grampian Chef of the Year in 2007 and a Medaille d’Or at the Scottish Hotel Awards in 2010.
Raemoir sits in 11 acres of secluded lawn and parkland surrounded by 3,500 acres of hill and forest, a 25 minute drive from Aberdeen. Its dining room, historically the Oval Ballroom, is one of the most splendidly atmospheric in the Highlands. The hotel was formerly the residence of Lord Cowdray, owner of Pearson Longman Press, publisher of the Financial Times.
Two distinct buildings house the 20 individually decorated ensuite bedrooms – the main Georgian mansion and The Ha’ Hoose which dates back to 1715 and is currently the subject of research by Historic Scotland.
Fishing is important for Raemoir which is also on Scotland’s Whisky, Castle and Golf Trails and the hotel offers fisherman’s rates for groups of 3 or more anglers.
“We have all the facilities anglers would normally expect at an hotel,” Neil Rae said. “Added to that we have a secluded, elegant, historic building and one of the most exciting kitchen teams in the UK.
David Littlewood also believes location is one of Raemoir’s main strengths – and that includes its proximity to the Dee.
“Here you feel you’re in the middle of the Highlands yet if you turn left at the end of the drive you’re in one of the most switched-on cities in Europe,” he commented. “Turn right and in the same time you’re in the middle of the Cairngorms watching herds of red deer or golden eagles, or fishing for the king of fish on the Dee.”
RAEMOIR HOUSE HOTEL
Banchory, Aberdeenshire AB31 4ED