Sunday Times Hotel of the Year 2019, the Fife Arms is a Victorian Coaching Inn that has been imaginatively restored in a resolutely Victorian style with a unique charm and is located in the historic Scottish village of Braemar amidst the majestic landscape of the Cairngorms National Park. As a fascinating passion project from international art dealers Hauser & Wirth, there are over 12,000 pieces of artworks and antiques here, and interior designer Russell Sage, working in collaboration with local historians, ensured that every square centimetre of the hotel evokes the traditions and customs of the Scottish Highlands.
Rooms : 46 Bedrooms and Suites Type : Couples, Active Outdoors, Art, Royal
Each room has its own decor, and highlights a piece of the hotel’s history and art curated over 3 years: A quaint fireplace, a pub that’s been the local living room for as long as the locals can remember, an armoury, a watercolour created by Queen Victoria herself or the woody scent that drifts along the corridors and recalls the area’s plants and flowers… It’s a place where time seems to stand still, and adding to this surreal scene is the hotel’s spa, and restaurants , which are highlights in their own right.
There is The Clunie Dining Room where the art of wood-fire cooking comes to life, and The Drawing Room, with walls covered in Scottish art and antiques, while elsewhere, Elsa’s Bar brings a little Art Deco glamour to the mix, inspired by the signature style of fashion icon Elsa Schiaparelli who frequently visited.
Our Discovery Family Suites combine two rooms (Nature & Poetry and Scottish Culture) each with ensuite bathrooms. These individual rooms celebrate pioneering figures in Scottish history.
The Scottish Heritage suites offer the combination of two Scottish Culture rooms. Both rooms are ensuite with a separate shower and bath.
The Majestic Family Suite offers a combination of a Royal and Victoriana suite. With their rich colours and furnishings, two living areas and elegant bathrooms with freestanding baths, this is our most luxurious family option.
Inspired by some of Braemar’s most noble visitors, our Royal Suites are richly furnished with antiques, artworks and even objects that once belonged to these historic figures. For families a sofa bed and interconnecting rooms are available.
The Flying Stag
The Flying Stag was created by the renowned artist, James Prosek, who is known for his paintings of unique, hybrid animals. ALL menus are focused on local, seasonal produce and are updated daily.
It was said that if you were looking for someone in Braemar, the first place you should look was the public bar at The Fife Arms. Newly christened The Flying Stag, the public bar continues to be the social centre of the village. With regulars rubbing shoulders with visitors, the bar has a vibrant atmosphere with animated conversation and live entertainment. The bar offers local beers, Scottish whiskies and spirits accompanied by a menu of bar snacks and hearty Scottish dishes.
The Clunie Dining Room
With menus created by Executive Chef Tim Kensett, The Clunie Dining Room showcases the art of wood-fire cooking.
The Drawing Room
The Drawing Room brings together art and history. The walls are covered in The Fife Arms tartan, which was designed specially for the hotel and the room is richly furnished with Scottish art and antiques. The room is a place to relax and unwind over coffee, afternoon tea or a drink at cocktail hour.
An exquisite jewel box of a bar, Elsa’s brings Art Deco glamour to the Highlands. Inspired by fashion designer Elsa Schiaparelli’s signature style, love of shocking pink and “bon mots”, this bijou bar offers champagne and hand-crafted cocktails that are beautifully presented. The perfect spot for a pre-prandial aperitif or a late-night digestif, the bar showcases Scottish spirits and elixirs.
The Fife Arms contains over 16,000 antiques, artworks and curios including several site-specific works by world-renowned contemporary artists. We offer special art tours for our guests, which allow you to experience the world class art which can be found throughout the hotel, from Pablo Picasso, Lucian Freud, Gerhard Richter and Bruegel to site specific commissions from contemporary art stars and water colours by Queen Victoria and Prince Charles. To find our more about the Fife Arms art collection, click HERE.
Surrounding the hotel & the village of Braemar is the extraordinary Cairngorms National Park. Visitors can walk out of the hotel & within 5 minutes be on walking trail which will lead you through historic forests of heather and Scot’s Pine before you emerge at the top to experience a panoramic view of the village & Deeside valley.
There are 40 Munros accessible from Braemar, from Ben MacDui to Beinn Bhareac, offering a wealth of hill walking. The network of local paths & tracks are suitable for all abilities & also offer the perfect opportunity to experience the wonderful native flora and fauna, red squirrels, ptarmigan, osprey and red deer.
The Fife Arms has an in-house forager Natasha Lloyd, who is passionate about sharing her expert knowledge of the local plants and vegetation. Both adults and children will love these guided walks.
The River Dee is one of the most famous salmon rivers in the world and it runs just past the hotel. The Salmon season starts early February and runs until the end of September. Sea trout is available during the summer months but Rainbow trout is available all year. The hotel has its own rod room for guests to store their equipment.
Learn the art of navigation with a practical, hands on course that teaches the basics of map reading including using features, contours and grid references. You will discover how to plan your journey through the Cairngorms National Park and use a compass to take and follow a route which will direct you to hidden treasure.
Uncover the mysteries of the forest and meet some of its wild inhabitants with a private guide. You will learn secret stories about some of Scotland’s most native trees, as well as their past & present uses. We’ll explore the sounds of the forest & the lives of the animals that live in it.
Go back in time to see how people of the past lived and worked in the remote glens surrounding the hotel. With a private guide, you’ll explore the ruins of a remote village and learn about the lives of its inhabitants. To finish off the trip, you’ll also make an ancient form of light, similar to one these inhabitants would have used.
Braemar has plenty of local attractions to keep you busy during your stay. The local whisky distillery is ‘Royal Lochnagar’ at Crathie by Balmoral Castle. Further afield you will find Speyside and Highland distilleries, both boutique and established.
The Braemar Gathering takes place annually on the first weekend in September and welcomes thousands of visitors. It’s the only Highland Games with a Royal Patron, HM Queen Elizabeth II, who attends every year to see the best of the best toss the caber, battle it out in tug o’ war or perform the traditional Highland fling.
For novice or beginners, Glenshee is 3,504 ft of mountain winter adventure that beckons skiers and snowboarders alike.
Our Family Room is a treasure trove of fun for children of all ages.
With board games, books and table football plus a play kitchen, DVD player and Xbox with an array of different games, this is the perfect hangout for your little ones.
Don’t miss the red squirrels hidden throughout the room, all knitted by the ‘Deeside Knitwits’.
Treasure hunt around the hotel. Each young guest will receive a set of instructions which ask them to find certain treasures located throughout the hotel. Once completed the hotel will share a prize with each successful treasure hunter!
See below some itinerary ideas that can include The Fife Arms.
"A true joy to stay here, an art collectors paradise oosing with comfort and enormous imagination"
Rooms: 71 guest rooms including 8 Suites and 2 Signature Suites, North Lodge and The Dower House
Type: Family, Couples, Equestrian and Sporting Enthusiasts
Features & Activities: Enjoy quintessentially English activities in a stunning parkland setting such as tennis, croquet and horse-riding or explore at your own pace on one of the hotel’s bicycles.
Location: Only 20 minutes from London Heathrow Airport and an easy 45 minutes from central London
Brown’s Hotel London
At Brown’s Hotel, a Rocco Forte Hotel, you’ll feel a strong sense of London, Mayfair and the city’s most celebrated galleries, restaurants, parks and shopping streets. Tradition, cut with a spirited English humour and cosmopolitan twist : playful touches, modern artworks and a fresh, unfussy ease among the wood panels, smart suits and afternoon teas. The glamour and gaiety the iconic address deserves, and the quality and charm the Forte name assures.
Rooms: 82 Bedrooms and 33 Suites Type: Couples, City Breaks
Gregans Castle Hotel
Gregans Castle Hotel is an oasis of comfort and genuine Irish hospitality with breath-taking views across Galway Bay. It is the ultimate luxurious and decadent hideaway idyllically situated overlooking the unique Burren landscape. The elegant bedrooms, antiques, modern art, turf fires, candlelight and garden flowers add to the indulgently relaxing atmosphere. Guests have included J.R.R Tolkien, who is said to have been influenced by the Burren when writing The Lord of the Rings, as well as other revered artists such as Seamus Heaney and Sean Scully.
Rooms : 21 Bedrooms and Suites. Type : Couples, Families, Outdoor Active
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Jill Jergel, Frontiers International Travel
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Max Levy, Direct client
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Joni Gerace, The Travel Society, LLC
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Clients of Courtney Regan, Affiliate of Brownell Travel
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Jill A. Jergel, Frontiers International Travel
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Carole McFarland, Universal Travel
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Donald M. Davis, President, Luxury Travel, Inc.
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Peter Carideo, CRC Travel
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Ann Lipschitz, Worldview Travel
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Financial Times, How to Spend it
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Conde Nast Traveller Magazine
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Yvonne Malka, Signature Travel Network, April 2018