Play Hard

Country houses, spa hotels and castles to stay in Scotland

When it comes to unforgettable staycations, luxury really is the name of the game – as proven by three of the best places to stay in Scotland.

Written by High Life North
Published 31.03.2023


Riddell House

Sleeps: up to 10

Where: Melrose, Roxburghshire

Price: from £1,395 for three nights (based on a party of 10)

Dog-friendly: Yes


Get your Downton Abbey on and become Ladies and Lords for a few days at the magnificent Riddell House.

This country estate accommodation at the heart of Ale Water Valley is distinguished by its fascinating history and its enviable views across the rolling Scottish Borders.

Designed to provide the epitome of comfort, elegance and relaxation, Riddell House is one of the best places to stay in Scotland: housing up to 10 guests across five luxury bedrooms – including one accessible double bedroom and bathroom – and boasting three refined reception rooms.

Riddell House is a guaranteed hit with the more active among us. Outside, the property lays claim to its own private tennis court and gardens with a croquet lawn, so a little healthy competition is never far away.

And, as you’re located right at the centre of fantastic hiking and cycling country – complete with the excellent golf courses, Olympic-standard equestrian facilities, a clay pigeon shooting school and sporting dog training – you’ll never be at a loss for how to spend your days.

All that fun sounds a little tiring, which is why Riddell House plays host to a range of therapeutic spa treatments, which can be administered within the property.



Marine North Berwick

Sleeps: up to 4 per room

Where: North Berwick, East Lothian

Price: from £200 per night

Dog-friendly: Yes

Known as the ‘Grand Old Lady’, Marine North Berwick is a beloved, luxury landmark on Scotland’s famous golf coast.

With sensational views over the Firth of Forth and Bass Rock, the boutique spa hotel Scotland calls its own rises from the landscape to offer guests a quietly elegant escape.

The thoughtfully-curated rooms and suites here pay homage to the ancient Scottish Linksland, with warm woods intermingling with heathery hues to create a relaxing space for holidaymakers to unwind.

As you may guess, Marine North Berwick is ideal for any keen golfer. Right in the heart of golf country, the hotel is within easy distance of 21 courses to suit all standards along 30 miles of breath-taking coastal terrain.

When it comes to hospitality, Marine North Berwick will have you spoiled for choice. Inspired by their surroundings, The Lawn restaurant’s team have created dynamic reinventions of local cuisine, while Bass Rock Bar offers a serene ambience in which to relax and unwind as you enjoy its award-winning whiskies, international wines or Scottish craft ales.

And for those looking for ultimate rejuvenation, this spa hotel has partnered with leading French skincare brand Caudalie to provide indulgent facial and body treatments.



Cringletie House Hotel

Sleeps: up to 4

Where: Peebles

Price: from £309 per night

Dog-friendly: Yes

An historic, 28-acre estate comprising luxury accommodation, a 2 AA-Rosette restaurant and beautifully manicured gardens, this 400-year-old county house hotel is one of the finest castles to stay in Scotland.

Think snug lounges with roaring log fires, acres of woodland to explore, dazzling décor and decadent dining to satisfy every craving.

Near Peebles and Edinburgh, guests at the Cringletie estate enjoy a secluded hilltop setting over panoramic views of the rural landscape.

Not that you’ll want to look away from the grandeur inside this four-star hotel; with elegant rooms and suites (some even complete with their own Jacuzzis), Downton Abbey-style lounges, a sumptuous dining destination and innovative solutions which have earned the hotel a Catey Award for accessibility, ultimate comfort is the name of the game at Cringletie.

With 13 guest rooms and suites to choose from – not to mention a self-catering guest cottage in the grounds, if you prefer a little more privacy – you’re spoilt for choice when it comes to castles to stay in Scotland.

Each room has its own characteristics, with romantic turrets and feature fireplaces waiting to be explored. Better still, many of the rooms are dog-friendly – so no-one in the family need miss out.

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