A self-catering family holiday home in Kincardineshire, Scotland
Balbegno Castle is a spectacular 1560’s L Plan castle with a Georgian wing attached that was redecorated and refurbished by Pedlars founders Charlie and Caroline Gladstone. It has a world-renowned Great Hall with an unusual vaulted heraldic ceiling, a drawing room and a large dining room.
The Great Outdoors
Balbegno sits in the shadow of The Highlands, in the centre of thousands and thousands of acres of undisturbed wilderness. Guests have exclusive access* to Fasque Lake, an eight hectare (that’s large) ornamental lake with three islands and a rowing boat. The lake offers fishing for trout and endless opportunities for camping, walking and mucking about.
The incredible beach at St Cyrus, with miles and miles of sand and isolation, is 20 minutes away. The Highlands of Scotland are within striking distance; a 20 minute drive will take you to the foot of Clochnaben, one of our favourite family yomps. And Balmoral is only an hour away.
Balbegno also has a large private garden, with woodland, lawns and rose beds. We think that croquet is the world’s greatest sport and so Balbegno has a croquet lawn and a Jaques set.
Shooting, stalking and river fishing are available by prior arrangement. We even provide wellies, just in case anyone forgets them.
* You may–once in a blue moon–have to share the fishing with someone else. But you will not have to share your boat… and there is plenty of space (and lots of trout).
Things to do indoors if it rains
As in every great holiday house, there’s a pool table. It’s amazing how good you can get with a few days’ practice. There are lots of board games.
And, if that isn’t enough, there’s Sky TV, a DVD player and wireless broadband.
Eating and Drinking
Eating The Great Hall is Balbegno’s most spectacular room, with its ceiling depicting the coats of arms of 13 Scottish peers. The Hall has a table that can comfortably seat 20, a fireplace and lots of comfort- -able chairs for kicking back and relaxing. And there’s still plenty of space to run around or dance or whatever. The dining room is more formal (but not at all stuffy) and can seat about 14.
There’s an excellent general village store in Fettercairn, about a mile away.
Cooking The kitchen includes all of the things you need; a good gas/electric oven, dishwasher, double sink, lots of gadgets, endless storage and a good, big, table. Balbegno is self-catering but we will happily introduce you to agencies that will be able to provide someone to cook for you. We will, of course, make sure that the kitchen is stocked with some simple but important stuff when you arrive; bread, eggs, butter, milk and a bottle or two of wine. Hampers–including the finest meat, vegetables, cheese and wine–can be ordered from our award winning (Best Retailer in Wales for the last two years, no less) Hawarden Estate Farm Shop, for delivery to Balbegno to coincide with your arrival.
Ground floor First floor
Large double room Twin room Double room
Small single room Large double room Twin room*
* This twin room can easily be converted into a comfortable dormitory for four due to the inclusion of
clever beds that, when rolled out from their storage position (under the other beds), open up on
spring-loaded legs to become proper full-height beds with really good mattresses.
Maintenance, Cleaning and Washing
There’s a utility room with a washing machine, a dryer and space to hang damp clothing. This room also contains a second dishwasher. The house will be spotless when you arrive. If you are staying for more than one week, the house will be cleaned every Saturday. The grounds are fully maintained. The world’s best, most helpful handyman is on hand to help should anything go wrong.
Balbegno is about 45 minutes’ drive from Aberdeen Airport, which is incredibly well served from most UK airports and from much of Europe. It is about the same distance from Dundee Airport, which is particularly good for travel from London City Airport. Edinburgh and Glasgow airports are about an hour and a half away, Inverness is 2 hours away.
The nearest mainline station is Montrose with Laurencekirk offering a limited service.
The A90 is about 10 minutes’ drive away. If you are using satellite navigation, the post code is AB30 1YD. OS Map Sheet NO Grid 63847296.
The local village of Fettercairn isn’t exactly a hub of commercial activity but there is a very good general store and a Post Office. There’s also a distillery.
Fettercairn’s most notable feature is the arch, erected in 1861 in honour of Victoria and Albert. But probably more importantly, there is a pub, the Ramsay Arms.
For many years the castle was occupied as a grand farmhouse. The farm was bought by the Gladstone family in the 1830’s, but the house remained a farmhouse until recently, when they were lucky enough to be able to take it back in-hand. We’re very excited to be able to offer it as a really wonderful holiday home.
For more information, costs and bookings please contact Alison Ross at Fasque and Glen Dye Estates.
Phone: +44 (0) 7525 128879
For more information please visit Balbegno Castle.