The 17th century manor stands in a 13-acre park complete with Highland cattle (that’s ‘coos’ to the locals!) and strutting peacocks. Even more strutting than the peacocks are the young male staff adorned with bold, black kilts. How they manage in the cold weather, I’ll never know! However, it was when I was whisked away to my room that I saw the true extent of the Prestonfield’s opulence.
My suite radiated its own indulgently romantic atmosphere, with rich lashings of leather, silk and velvet. The flocked wallpaper and intricate tapestries adorning each wall gave the distinct impression that I was somewhere to remember. The décor is amongst the most classic I have seen in a long time.
The Prestonfield has only 24 rooms, so even though you may need to book well in advance, it means you never feel lost in the crowd like in some of the much larger hotels. Regardless of what else takes up your time, make sure you dine at Rhubarb, an absolute culinary delight. I do so very much love a virtuous feast at a fine restaurant, and I was impressed from the start. Not only was the cuisine some of the finest I’ve ever tasted, but service was fantastic, and my wine waiter held the perfect balance of being knowledgeable, without being remotely intimidating.
After dinner we sat on the terrace sipping champagne, listening to the sound of bagpipes and the peacocks in the distance; it was everything I thought it could be.