Somwhere Old, Somewhere New

28 June 2018


Modernity vs antiquity, which is better for a holiday? Would you rather a contemporary architect designed eco home or a traditional crofter’s thatched cottage? It’s a fun debate that is not likely to be resolved any time soon. To help you decide, here are a few suggestions for each, the very best traditional and modern places to stay on holiday this year and the best reasons why you should stay there.

Strath Brora View is an incredible achievement. Bright, airy and comfortable, a stay here is about looking to the future, not the past.  The nearby town of Brora has enough tradition and history for most but when you return in the evening, the whole family will appreciate the amount of space, the garden, decking and views. Holidays are all about atmosphere and the vibe as soon as you step through the door is one of relaxation. A TV room on a mezzanine level and a games room will keep the kids busy while the adults can sip wine on the screened decking outside.

Strath Brora View is indeed beautiful but what about properties with soul? Living museums that could tell you stories of the hardship and struggle of the crofting way of life. Tradition is important lest we forget the past. Big open spaces and acres of glass windows are all very well but there is nothing in the world cosier than sitting next to a fire in a storm being surrounded by stone walls. Tigh Bhisa Blackhouse does not sacrifice comfort for tradition, in fact it is the old fashioned style that makes it so appealing. From the smell of the peat fire to the six foot thick walls a stay here is a step back in time as well as a history lesson. Sitting by the fire, a dram will never taste so good.

But some might argue that history is more about a sense of place than an actual building. Although crofters are proud of their heritage they are also forward looking and progressive. You can appreciate the past without living in it. Aodann in Poolewe is a great example of a modern building designed to make the most of its surroundings. It feels rooted to the landscape, almost like it belongs there. Many contemporary builds can stick out like a sore thumb in the rural Highlands but here the gradual lines and timber finishes ensure it blends perfectly into the hillside where it commands an impressive view over the water. This sums up contemporary Scotland, a traditional rural location brought to life with the best cutting edge design and technology.

Aodann may be fashionably decorated but surely everyone knows that you cannot beat a classic piece of design, and a thatched cottage is just that. A timeless, iconic construction that appears on postcards and biscuit tins across the country. It’s our heritage and we should celebrate just how good it is. A night under thatch is an experience not to be missed and Smiddy Cottage gives you the opportunity to feel exactly what it’s like. You can find contemporary houses all over the world but thatched cottages are a unique symbol of the highlands and a reminder of our tradition. Warm, inviting and comfortable, is that not what holidays should be about?

You could say that Smiddy Cottage is not really traditional because it is far too comfortable, for a truly authentic thatched cottage experience you would need to have a dirt floor, no running water and cattle in the next room. If that is really the experience you are after them you will have to look beyond LHH. For something that is the exact opposite, Beach Cottage is the place for you. Completed in 2017 to an incredibly high standard this ultra-stylish eco build makes the most of its enviable location. An elevated position makes for panoramic views and its proximity to the end of the road at Dalbeg means you can frequently have the beach all to yourself. The interior is as much an attraction as the location, with top quality furnishings and exquisite attention to detail. Holidays should be about making it easy for yourself and for a romantic couples retreat then you can’t get any more luxurious on the islands.

Whichever side of the argument you are on LHH will almost certainly have something to suit you. Call now to book your next luxury break.