Today, 20th August 2012, the new £3m Loch Lomond Arms Hotel is open for business, with a warm welcome waiting for locals and visitors alike.
The project has been a labour of love for the Luss Estates for whom its Chair, Sir Malcolm Colquhoun, Chief of the Colquhoun Clan, welcomed guests to the official launch of the hotel, ceremonially cutting the ribbon to open public access. He is shown at eethe very moment below, accompanied by his wife, Lady Katharine and son Fergus.
The hotel is already making a significant contribution to the reinvigoration of the local economy, employing the skills of several local trades people and the services of a number of Scottish based suppliers, many of whom were invited to attend the launch party.
Over 30 jobs have been created, with a third of new staff coming from the village and the rest from surrounding localities.
Sir Malcolm Colquhoun says: ‘The opening of the hotel is the culmination of several years of hard work. It also marks the beginning of putting Luss back on the map not just as an appealing tourist destination but as a vibrant village with much to offer.
‘The launch starts the process of revitalising the area through generating employment, attracting visitors and potential further inward investment to the area; while also providing an establishment that can play a pivotal role in the life of the community.’
Dating back to the 18th century, the building has been expertly restored with the support of local builder Drumkinnon Joinery and Building, based in Alexandria. It now offers a timeless interior, expertly styled by leading UK interior designer Serena Williams-Ellis. Each of the individually styled 14 en-suite bedrooms, each named after a different Scottish Clan, are equipped with LCD television, iPod docking station and Wi-Fi connection.
Every facility in the tourist trade today should have free and capable WiFi. It has becone a sine qua non and it is good to see the new Loch Lomond Arms alert to this.
At the heart of the new hotel is a traditional styled pub, sure to become a popular watering hole with villagers and visitors, with its relaxed and friendly atmosphere. The pub’s locally produced ales can be sanpled within the secluded beer garden.
Accompanying the range of home grown ales – including Loch Lomond Ales – and a well stocked gantry, head chef Peter Wilson has created a menu from the finest and freshest local produce for the pub’s two restaurant areas.
Peter’s innovative cooking style aims to deliver a Scottish menu with a modern twist.
The enticing menu includes pan fried fillet of hake with apples and toasted almonds; 8oz ribeye steak served with Café de Paris butter and triple cooked chips; and beef, sausage and mushroom casserole with rough puff pastry. The menu also provides a range of vegetarian options and there is a separate children’s menu.
Alastair Borland, General Manager of the Loch Lomond Arms Hotel – to the right of Sir Malcolm in the photograph below,says: ‘Reaction from locals has been really enthusiastic. They have been fully onboard with the aims of the project and we are greatly encouraged by their response to the launch. Along with the staff, I look forward to welcoming residents on a regular basis to enjoy all that the hotel has to offer.’
Room rates, including a full Scottish breakfast, currently start from £80 for a single occupancy and £120 room based on two sharing. As always, however, its worth first checking the Loch Lomond Arms Hotel website for seasonal offers. The site also carries more information about the hotel and you can register there for email updates on developments – or telephone 01436 860 420.
The management team at the hotel – Alastair Borland, General Manager; Beverley Smith, Duty Manager; and Valerie Jones, Deputy General Manager, pictured together above with Sir Malcolm Colquhoun in a marquee outside the hotel (Valerie on the left,Beverley on the right), are first class. Visitors should experience the sort of service often hoped for and less often delivered.