The Machrie Hotel, Isle of Islay

Retreats, Scottish accommodation

A brand new luxury hotel on the Isle of Islay, the Machrie sits within walking distance from a long stretch of sandy beach backed by dunes. The main focus of the hotel is its fabulous golf course which is situated along the dunes of The Strand. Not being a golfer... would this hotel appeal?

We arrived at sunset after taking the Calmac ferry from Kennecraig to Port Askaig. A beautiful journey which was made even better by sailing during the winter with its incredible light. Passing so closely to Jura and seeing the Paps of Jura in the late afternoon sunshine already made my day! We arrived just in time to catch the last of the sunset on The Strand beach by walking on a little path from the hotel that leads you safely past the golf course and onto the beach. To be able to walk from a hotel to the beach is my idea of a good location...

The hotel felt quiet, restful and we loved some of the little details such as fresh milk in the fridge and the most amazing double size pillows that you could just sink slowly into. The rooms were just perfect. As someone who doesn't really like restaurants because they are usually too loud or the tables to close together, and also with my history of restaurant management and cooking, I'm a hard one to please! But I do love good food. And the food was most definitely very good. Luckily the tables aren't to close together either and the whole ambience of this hotel is quiet and luxury so I actually really enjoyed my meals at The Machrie. The beautiful and quirky design of the interiors throughout I also found really interesting.

And finally, I could hardly visit this hotel and not try out the spa .... The hotel were so accommodating that they managed to move my appointment for me as the weather was so amazing that I didn't want to be indoors during sunlight. These little things make all the difference. So, late afternoon, I headed in for reflexology. I love spa treatments and have been to many a spa and had many disappointments and tend to leave thinking I might as well have waited till I got home and gone to my usual spa in inverness. However, the therapist was incredible and obviously highly experienced and trained and it was possibly the best reflexology I have experienced. Love to see that the spa is in line with the rest of the hotel experience.

To sum up, I didn't want to leave! I will return to spend more time around the island and visit Jura which is just a short ferry hop away.



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