This 100-Year-Old Estate Is Arguably Scotland’s Best Hotel

Over its 100-year history, Gleneagles has been called many things: The Glorious Playground, The Palace in the Glens, and even the eighth wonder of the world. Step foot onto its 850 acres of Scottish countryside, and the reasons are as crystal clear as its chandeliers.

Built in 1924 by the General Manager of the Caledonian Railway Company as a country hotel and golf course, it now has three award-winning golf courses, a two-Michelin star restaurant, and a massive 20-treatment room spa.

Guests are greeted by kilted doormen and faultless service, which won the hotel the first-ever Art of Hospitality Award at The World’s 50 Best Hotels Awards in 2023.

Gleneagles bedroom suite

This Georgian chateau-inspired hotel has 233 rooms and suites split into eight categories between two building wings. Every room is unique, with warm velvet furniture, latticed carpets, crown molding, and clawfoot tubs decorating the palatial spaces.

Gleneagles hotel restaurant

But with all the various ways to spend your time at Gleneagles, lounging in your room falls to the bottom of the itinerary. The hotel’s dedicated “Playground Planners” helps guests arrange any number of activities on their wish list. 

Gleneagles hotel bar

Animal lovers will gravitate towards falconry, gun dog training, ferret racing, and horseback riding. Sports enthusiasts can partake in a round of golf, archery, ax throwing, fishing, or bike riding. And for those who want to be pampered, its newly designed spa area includes multiple saunas, steam rooms, pools, and every treatment under the Scottish sun, done with its own oils and scrubs.

Gleneagles dining options include an impressive nine places to eat and drink. If you’re lucky enough to score a reservation at Scotland’s only two Michelin-starred restaurants, Andrew Fairlie, it’s worth the trip alone. Otherwise, The Strathearn has Scotland’s best house-made smoked salmon, beef Wellington and souffle. After dinner, head to The American Bar, where a berry-inspired cocktail book makes for inventive tipples.

Top Takeaways

Location: Perthshire, Scotland

The Vibe: An impeccably curated blend of old-school glamor and outdoor adventure.

Rating: Five-star

Food + Drink: Known as one of Scotland’s prized dining destinations, its massive breakfast buffet alone merits a stay. Stop into The Dormy for stone-baked pizzas and traditional Tandoor dishes overlooking the golf course. In the main building, Century Bar features a standout signature burger alongside Scottish ales and rare whiskies. Book the Glendevon for its signature afternoon tea, featuring recipes from its 1920s opening. And if you’re after some comfort food, reserve a table at The Birnam, where meats grill over its custom-made fire pit and comforting pasta leaves empty bowls.

Amenities: What amenities don’t they have? The spa has multiple swimming pools, saunas, steam rooms, a gym, and complimentary fitness classes. There are a variety of meeting rooms, plus an arcade with numerous shops where you can buy swanky bags, jewelry, whiskey, and Gleneagles swag. There is also a massive kids and teens club.

Our Favorite Thing About the Hotel: Walking the perfectly manicured grounds, watching the labs train for bird hunts, playing croquet on the lawn, and visiting the eagles and falcons in their enclosures.

What’s nearby?: Honestly, there’s no reason to leave Gleneagles. But if you do want to go exploring, its position in “the heart of Scotland” means you can be in Edinburgh in an hour, historic Stirling in 30 minutes, or stunning Scone Palace in 40 minutes.

Rooms: 233

Pricing: Rates start at $728 per night.

Closest Airport: Edinburgh Airport

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