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Coul House Hotel
Hotel News

Progress Report Number Four

Posted by Stuart and Susannah Macpherson - 16:40 on 22 December 2007

Well it is fair to say a lot has been accomplished this year. We finally started the long awaited refurbishment of the ground floor with many of the improvements now clearly visible and I must say we are all feeling quite optimistic about this coming year. Susannah is keeping well, the kids continue to thrive and the business continues to grow. This year I managed to join Fortrose Golf Club and even had some family holidays, a week away to Perthshire in April and a week in the south of France in October followed by five days on Arran where I played a little more golf than I should have. I practically had to be dragged off the golf course to get back to work. Thank goodness I have Chris here, to leave the place in such good hands takes strokes off my game without a doubt.

Refocusing our energy in the early part of the year on the refurbishment it was time to find a builder that would help us. I am sure it comes as no surprise to many of you that this proved almost impossible. We were struggling to find a stonemason that would convert the old stone cellar into an office and break through the three-foot thick stonewall into the front hall making the opening for the new reception area. Then in passing Rory (our then second chef) announced he used to do a little stonemason work and with Charlie’s help would love to have a go at it. So we had a meeting with our conservation architect Hector MacDonald and with his guidance Rory traded his apron for a crow bar! Charlie and Rory removed several tonnes of stone one wheel barrow at a time, broke through the stone wall, reinstated the false window, laid a new floor, created a new ceiling and hooked the room up to the central heating. We now have a lovely new reception plus a great new office with desks for Chris, Yuliya and myself (oh the luxury of space) although the kids think it’s their games arcade, with two computers being side by side they enjoy finding their way on to CBBC games and can spend hours (if we let them) playing selections of noisy games in stereo. So if you have called to make a reservation and heard kids games in the background it is not Chris and myself playing those games it’s the kids…..honest.

Anna continues to nurture the garden on the limited budget I allow her and to her credit each year it is getting more and more established. We have had several lovely weddings this year and the grounds were a beautiful backdrop for all the pictures.

It’s been very encouraging for us this year once again to see more and more of our guests and their friends returning throughout the year and to have been featured in many independent travel guides including the “Good Hotel Guide”, “The Lonely Planet” and “Scotland the Best.” We have also had many great reviews on the web site “www.tripadvisor.com” so thank you to those who wrote to any of these guides and to all of you for your support. Credit is due to Chris, Garry and all the staff for their good nature, hard work and enthusiasm without which not only would I be insane by now but the guest experience would not be what I so often hear it is……………… “Deliciously relaxing”.

So here is to another successful year.

Yours sincerely,

Proud owners

Coul House Hotel, Contin, Ross & Cromarty, Scotland IV14 9ES E: T: +44 (0)1997 421487