1.Doubletree by Hilton Dunblane Hydro 2.Stag statues at the entrance 3.View from the bedroom window 4.Bed 5.Seating area in the Junior Suite 6.Bathroom 7.Cocktail masterclass 8.The Kailyard Restaurant 9.Starter of grilled trout 10.Main course of featherblade of beef 11.Dessert of passion fruit creme brulee 12.After dinner strawberry daiquiris
This weekend (as you may have noticed me tweeting and instagramming about!) I was kindly invited along to the Doubletree by Hilton Dunblane Hydro as part of the Rediscover Hilton campaign. As I am other half-less, I took my gal pal Morag along with me to sample dinner, bed and breakfast at the hotel. I’ve tried to whittle down the photos for this post a bit, but be sure to check out the rest of them over in my Facebook album, and watch my vlog too! I’ve been to a couple of the other Scottish “hydro hotels” before, but this was my first stay in Dunblane and I must say the Doubletree by Hilton hotel had everything I could have wanted and more! Dunblane is only around an hour away from Edinburgh or Glasgow by train or car, so it’s not too far to travel for a weekend away even though it feels like you’re right in the countryside. The hotel is less than a 10 minute walk from the train station which made it really easy to get to for people like me who don’t drive!
Upon arrival, we were greeted by friendly staff and a delicious warm chocolate chip cookie (which was much appreciated as I hadn’t had any lunch!) and made our way up to our room to settle in. We were in one of the Junior Suites on the 3rd floor which had lovely views of the hotel grounds and the town. The bedroom had a nice big, comfy bed as well as a desk area and huge TV, and through in the living room area there were plenty of seats to relax in and another TV. There was also loads of storage space which would be great if you were staying for a few nights. The bathroom was also lovely, very clean and bright with complimentary toiletries and plenty of fresh towels.
At 5pm we headed down to the Cocktail Bar for a cocktail masterclass with one of Dunblane Hydro’s expert cocktail waiters; I thought it was a really nice touch for the hotel to put on a special little event event for us bloggers. I also thought it was great that the General Manager of the hotel came to meet us and join in with the masterclass, showing that the head staff take an interest in the guests as well as the running of the hotel. We got to sample lots of cocktails – some classics like my favourite French Martini, and some new mixes like the R&E Collins which had raspberries, elderflower liqueur and mint leaves, yum! Our waiter was very knowledgeable and even provided us with the recipes so we could try out the cocktails for ourselves at home. Will definitely been trying out some of them soon!
Morag and I had booked a table for dinner in The Kailyard restaurant for 6.30pm, so we headed down the corridor from the bar and were seated at a table right beside the window with yet more lovely views. The evening meal was probably the part of the whole weekend I was looking forward to the most, I love a good meal out so I do! The Kailyard includes lots of signature dishes from Nick Nairn, who has worked closely with the restaurant’s staff to produce high quality food using local and seasonal produce. I chose the grilled trout with “Nick’s” potato salad, beetroot puree and fresh horseradish for my starter, followed by slow braised featherblade of Scottish beef with mustard mash, Swiss chard, truffled celeriac and red wine gravy for my main course. Both were presented beautifully and tasted amazing! After all that I still managed to squeeze in a pudding, and opted for the passion fruit creme brulee with chocolate chip shortbread. So good! After dinner we joined the other blogging ladies, Charlene and Ayden, and their other halves for one last cocktail before heading to our room to watch a bit of TV in bed and then get an early night.
Breakfast was served until 11am so we didn’t have to worry about getting up too early, which suited me fine! We wandered downstairs around 10am and filled up on a delicious cooked breakfast, and some fruit salad and pastries too. As always, the staff were very polite and helpful and the food was of a great standard. Sometimes I think hotel breakfasts can be a bit hit or miss, but the Dunblane Hydro got it spot on! If we had been staying a bit longer, we probably would have tried out some of the spa and beauty treatments at the health and leisure club but sadly it was time to say goodbye to our beautiful little room and head back to the train station, after a quick explore of Dunblane.
I can’t really think of a single negative thing about my entire stay, it honestly was probably the nicest hotel I’ve stayed in. It definitely isn’t a budget hotel, but if you’re looking for a luxury weekend away then I think the Doubletree by Hilton Dunblane Hydro is worth every penny. The room and the meals were of equally high standard, and every member of staff I came across was very friendly and helpful. My only slight down point was that I found the bedroom a bit too hot for sleeping comfortably in – but I’m a weirdo who likes Arctic temperatures so for most people a cosy bedroom would probably be a plus point!
And now, if you managed to make your way through all those words and pictures, time for a little competition! If you’d like to get your hands on a £100 voucher to spend on a Hilton getaway weekend, then all you need to do is be a follower of my blog through either Google Friend Connect and/or Bloglovin, and enter using the Rafflecopter widget below. The voucher is valid for one year and can be redeemed in any Hilton hotel within the UK (I’d recommend Dunblane Hydro if you can’t decide where to go!). The giveaway is open for 2 weeks, so get entering now!
What do you think of the Dunblane Hydro?
were kindly provided by the Hilton. As always, views are my own.