I’ve been in London just over 8 months now, and I’m still obsessed with it. I don’t know how anyone could happily live anywhere else after having a taste of London. The only thing I miss is family and close friends, but apart from that, the city is a dream. For the first 6 months, I spent every weekend exploring a new part of the city. It’s only recently that I’ve been venturing out of London itself over weekends.
A few weeks ago, I visited Inverness in Scotland. I had a vision of the type of weekend I wanted – I was imagining a cosy log cabin, in beautiful surroundings, with opportunities for hiking and enjoying the warmer weather that’s arrived. I found all that and more at Eagle Brae. Now, I’ve stayed at my fair share of 5 star hotels, and I know it sounds spoilt, but there really isn’t much that wows me anymore. Eagle Brae is the exception to that. The family run and owned luxury self catering cabins are incredible. Ours was a 1 bedroom double storey cabin, finished in the most beautiful way. The owner’s brother in law is a wood carver in India, so you’ll find the most striking wood carvings dotted all over the cabin. It’s the story of the cabins that appeals to me as much as the cabins themselves. You can really see the passion and care from the owners in every little detail – they cook the meals themselves, handle all booking requests, and also are very involved in making sure your stay is as comfortable as possible. Eagle Brae really does seem like a labour of love, it took them 8 years from inception of the idea to launch, and it’s amazing to think that they flew in all the wood for the cabins from Canada!
What I loved about the cabins is that they’re not furnished like the stock standard self catering accommodation – muted colours, non confrontational art, lack of character. Think lux, oversized leather couches, quirky ornaments, a kitchen stocked with every type of pot and pan you could ever need, spotless dishcloths and a dishwasher, fridge and oven. I could live there permanently! Most bookings are actually a week long, and Eagle Brae has 2-3 bedroom cabins too, so you can really make a trip out of it.
Unfortunately, my ambitious planning nature got the better of us this weekend. We arrived late on Friday night, and spent all of Saturday driving 3 hours north to Isle of Skye, a very beautiful part of the world, but admittedly, not one to do in a day trip.
That meant that we had very little time to enjoy the cabin itself. What we should have done is hiked a bit around Eagle Brae, and retired to the cabin in the early afternoon for some R&R. There’s plenty in the area to see and do, but you do need a car. I highly recommend a visit to Urquhart castle, around 30 minutes from Eagle Brae. You can also tick the Loch Ness box – although to be honest, the Loch Ness doesn’t look very different to all the other Lochs (lakes) around!
Nevertheless, now I just need to go back! Eagle Brae is an easy 40 minute drive away from Inverness Airport, which is just over an hour from London. The best part for me is that I didn’t need a visa, as my Schengen visa is currently expired and I have to get a new one before I can travel within most of Europe.
Weekly rates are quite affordable, particularly for the bigger cabins – visit www.eaglebrae.co.uk for more.