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Scotland holidays: A review of country house hotel Cavens on the Solway Firth

Great British boltholes: Inside the Georgian haven tucked away in a lovely nook of Scotland dubbed the country’s best-kept secret

  • The Mail on Sunday’s Keeba Critchlow checks into country house hotel Cavens, situated on the Solway Firth
  • She says the hotel is geared in the direction of ‘peace and rest’ and it ‘exudes country consolation and area’  
  • After a restful evening’s sleep, she enjoys the full Scottish cooked breakfast that includes haggis (naturally)

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‘I spent my early years in her neighbourhood, and among her servants and tenants I know that she was detested with the most heartfelt cordiality.’

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So wrote Scotland’s nationwide poet, Robert Burns, of Mrs Mary Oswald, one of the authentic homeowners of Cavens Estate close to Dumfries in the 18th Century.

Happily, the bard would certainly provide a lot kinder phrases about the present proprietors, Angus and Jane Fordyce, who’ve run Cavens as a boutique country house hotel since 1999. Indeed, so hospitable are they as hosts that many visitors have change into regulars.

Georgian splendour: Cavens is a boutique country house hotel tucked away on the Solway Firth

Georgian splendour: Cavens is a boutique country house hotel tucked away on the Solway Firth

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The Mail on Sunday's Keeba Critchlow says at Cavens you 'feel as if you're staying with friends'. Pictured is one of the cosy reception rooms

The Mail on Sunday’s Keeba Critchlow says at Cavens you ‘really feel as for those who’re staying with mates’. Pictured is one of the cosy reception rooms

The whitewashed Georgian haven, tucked away on the Solway Firth, exudes country consolation and area. Two ethereal reception rooms characteristic generously stuffed sofas and open fireplaces, and on heat days the adjoining terrace is a quiet spot from which absorb the sweep of lawns and mature timber.

Everything at Cavens is geared in the direction of peace and rest, and also you’ll really feel as for those who’re staying with mates. Rooms are immaculately adorned and both ‘country’, which overlook the gardens, or ‘estate’, that are impressively massive and considerably extra grand.

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Guests guide on a dinner, mattress and breakfast foundation and stays of multiple evening are inspired to correctly unwind from the stresses of fashionable life.

Dinner is a three-course set menu, which adjustments day by day utilizing scrumptious native produce and is just cooked by Angus to showcase their pure flavours. Expect sizzling smoked salmon on a mattress of leaves from the backyard with hollandaise and a poached egg; rib-eye steak with roasted rosemary potatoes and greens; and native cheese or lemon creme brulee to comply with.

Cavens is a natural base for exploring Dumfries and Galloway, says Keeba. Pictured is the River Nith in Dumfries

Cavens is a pure base for exploring Dumfries and Galloway, says Keeba. Pictured is the River Nith in Dumfries 

The Solway Firth (above) is just a 30-minute walk from the house. This beautiful corner of Scotland is dubbed the country’s best-kept secret

The Solway Firth (above) is only a 30-minute stroll from the house. This stunning nook of Scotland is dubbed the country’s best-kept secret

TRAVEL FACTS 

Keeba Critchlow was a visitor of Cavens, Dumfries. Dinner, mattress and breakfast from £300 per room per evening, primarily based on a two-night stick with two sharing. The house opens on April 1 and closes in November. Cavens may be booked for unique use for £1,900 per evening for as much as ten visitors in 5 bedrooms all 12 months (cavens.com).

Make certain to accompany your meal with one of the spectacular choice of wines accessible – the checklist far exceeds what you’d count on for such a small institution, and the 18th Century wine cellar itself is properly price a go to.

After a great evening’s relaxation in a single of the six massive bedrooms, a full Scottish cooked breakfast, that includes haggis (naturally), is the star of the breakfast menu. Alternative choices embrace regionally made granola and porridge, in addition to the ordinary baked items.

With roe deer and crimson squirrels amongst the common guests to the gardens and the Solway Firth only a 30-minute stroll from the house, there is no such thing as a must journey far to expertise this stunning nook of Scotland, dubbed the country’s best-kept secret.

Yet Cavens can be a pure base for exploring Dumfries and Galloway. Twitchers will take pleasure in the choices of RSPB Mersehead and WWT Caerlaverock, whereas the creative hub of Kirkcudbright is lower than an hour away.

Slightly additional afield is Dumfries House, a country mansion boasting an unrivalled assortment of Chippendale furnishings which the Prince of Wales saved for the nation in 2007. 

A go to to the space wouldn’t be full with out paying tribute to Robert Burns, who spent his final years in Dumfries in a sandstone house now open to the public (by appointment solely). 

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