Mar Hall stands in the most tranquil of locations – surrounded by over 200 acres of woodland and countryside, affording views best described as breath-taking. Yet Mar Hall is so easily reached – it is only ten minutes drive from Glasgow International airport and motorway links to the City of Glasgow and the rest of Scotland.
My husband Clifford and I stayed at Mar Hall for one night. Its convenient location makes it an excellent starting point for our holiday in Scotland. We soon discovered that as well as its superb location it had many other features that make it a very special place.
Set on the Earl of Mar Estate, this privately owned Edwardian Mansion delivers excellent customer service through its family values. It was refurbished in 2004 to provide 53 individually designed bedrooms, fine dining as well as casual dining, a wonderful Decleor spa, a swimming pool, with steam room and sauna, and a Championship golf course.
The approach to Mar Hall takes you down a tree lined driveway to the hotel which stands proudly facing the Kilpatrick hills and overlooking the golf course and River Clyde. There is a large car park and a very impressive entrance hall leading to reception.
The reception area provides access to the magnificent Grand Hall – the perfect place to take afternoon tea, or just to sit and relax. It is elegantly but comfortably furnished. Lighting comes from rather special chandeliers which emphasise the tall ceilings decorated with beautiful plasterwork. Tapestries and paintings hang from the walls. Large windows provide garden views.
Right of the Grand Hall is the Spike Bar, its speciality being its range of Malt Whisky. To the left of the Grand Hall is the beautiful Cristal Restaurant. The Spa can be accessed from within the hotel or from its separate entrance in the grounds as can the Golf Shop. There is an Italian Restaurant in the grounds, overlooking the Golf Course.
Arriving in reception we were met by a friendly staff member who immediately arranged for the concierge to collect our luggage from the car. During our stay at Mar Hall we were very impressed by the level of customer service. Every staff member we dealt with went out of their way to make our stay extra special, nothing was too much trouble, all the staff were friendly and approachable.
Our ground floor room had lovely views garden views and was furnished with a sumptuously dressed four poster bed, good sized wardrobes, a large flat screen TV, comfortable armchairs and tables. A fireplace created a homely feel. Our bathroom had all the quality fittings you would expect from a five star hotel.
I’d pre-booked a one hour spa appointment. Before my spa visit I enjoyed a swim in the swimming pool which is almost next door to the spa. There is also a sauna and steam room close to the pool.
Checking in early to the spa, 30 minutes ahead of my appointment allowed me to spend time in the Asian inspired relaxation room where I relaxed on a lounger enjoying the peaceful atmosphere whilst sipping complimentary herbal tea.
The spa has a wide range of treatments available, all are listed, showing costs and time, however it is possible to mix and match. My therapist was very knowledgeable and tailored a treatment plan for me which included a Swedish massage, a facial, a scalp massage, of varying lengths which used the hour. This also allowed me to sample three of their treatments. My spa treatments left me completely refreshed and relaxed.
We enjoyed pre dinner drinks in The Spike Bar where we enjoyed views of boats on the river.
We ate dinner at The Cristal Restaurant. Mar Hall takes pride in using the best ingredients. They list the different farms which provide their meats and the areas where their fish is sourced. The a la carte menu was superb and varied as was the wine list.
The Cristal Restaurant, we found to be a rather special place to eat – the 20ft windows, decorative plasterwork, art work, crystal chandeliers, lamps and fine furnishings combined to create an elegant setting where we enjoyed an absolutely fabulous meal.
Our meal started with tomato soup with freshly baked, warm, bread rolls, each different – sun dried tomato, onion, cheese, herb. We enjoyed a main course of rib eye steak, with mushroom, tomato, green salad and chipped potatoes, followed by sticky toffee pudding for myself and chocolate brownie pudding for Clifford. The elegant surroundings, good food and excellent service made a memorable evening for us.
Next morning, breakfast was superb, with a range of fresh fruits – large bowls of strawberries which tasted as if they had just been picked, a separate mixed berry salad, a fresh fruit salad containing a good variety of fruits, yoghurts, cold meats, cheeses, breads, jams and marmalades. There was a range of boxed cereals, as well as their own muesli and granola. A variety of cooked options were available – fish, meats, eggs as well as the full Scottish cooked breakfast.
Breakfast could be eaten in The Cristal Restaurant or The Grand Hall. We ate in The Cristal Restaurant, but later took our coffee into the Grand Hall, where we sat for a while before leaving through glass doors in the Grand Hall to enjoy a stroll around the grounds.
Returning from our walk, it was time to leave and continue our holiday. We left knowing we would love to return here and were happy to recommend this magnificent resort to others.
Mar Hall has a range of rooms available and various packages (including golf and spa).
Mar Hall Golf & Spa Resort
Bishopton, nr Glasgow