Luxury Large Holiday House Scotland
Stuckgowan: To reserve this property call 01242 285755
Beautifully Restored Home Set in Fairytale Forest Overlooking Loch Lomond
Sleeps 19 – 21 in 9 Bedrooms including 2 Ground Floor Bedrooms
We regret we do not accept Stag Parties
Transport your party to an idyllic woodland setting at Stuckgowan House, a striking Gothic 1820s home brought into the 21st century with gorgeous, carefully detailed renovations. Large groups will enjoy luxuriating in the open-air 7-seater hot tub with a bottle of wine (or three) while looking out onto stunning views of Loch Lomond, or make merry in the games room or cinema room.
With a breakfast bar and window seating area that holds 14, the kitchen is big enough to accommodate lavish breakfasts or late-night gatherings. There’s also a study, a gym, kid-ready gear and a host of other thoughtful details to make your stay in this unmatched location incredible and incredibly convenient. Easily access the house from the Glasgow airport, or take a train from Balloch Station or Tarbet.
Nestled in woodlands that boast one of the tallest Sequoias in Scotland, the home’s bedrooms are fittingly named after trees found on the estate.
Ground Floor Bedrooms:
Bedroom 1 (Sequoya): Four-posted king bed with en-suite bathroom with shower, sink, water closet and sprawling bath designed to allow two bathers to recline side by side, as well as a shower cubicle.
Bedroom 2 (Chestnut): Twin bedrooms with teak sleigh beds and en-suite bathroom with shower, teardrop bath, double sinks and water closet.
First Floor Bedrooms:
There are two staircases, one which is located near the kitchen and this leads to:-
Bedroom 3 (Lime): Double bedroom with a king double bed. Shares a bathroom with Rowan. Bathroom includes a bath, shower, wash hand basin and water closet.
Bedroom 4 (Rowan): A twin room with 2 solid teak beds. Shares a bathroom (see above) with Lime.
The main staircase which leads to a wonderful galleried landing provides access to the remaining bedrooms, as follows:
Bedroom 5 (Silver Birch): Double bedroom with a silver-framed king bed.
Bedroom 6 (Cooper Beach): Double bed with a huge circular bed set under an impressive angled ceiling. This room also has a small freestanding cooper slipper bath.
Bedroom 7 (Douglas Fir): A double bedroom with a King bed plus a single bed.
Bedroom 8 (Oak): Double bedroom with king bed and a small chaise longue that can function as a children’s bed (also suitable for adults under 5’2)
Bedroom 9 (Monterey Pine): Double bedroom with a king bed and a larger chaise longue/children’s bed (also suitable for adults under 5’2)
The first floor (adjacent to Oak and Monterey Pine) also includes a bathroom with teardrop bath, shower cubicle, wash hand basin and water closet, and two shower rooms with large walk-in showers.
Feel like a character in A Midsummer Night’s Dream as you party the night away on the outdoor terrace, which seats 16 for al fresco meals or twinkling cocktail hours. There’s a charcoal barbeque and a Midge Buster (available April through September). Electric entrance gates and ample parking. 34 Acres of land home to The Coast Redwood – the joint tallest tree in Scotland and the Monterey Pine to name a few.
- Study (Ground Floor) – A cosy, book-lined room with a wood-burning stove and gorgeous views of the grounds and the Loch.
- Kitchen (Ground Floor) – Modern and light-filled, with tons of space and a breakfast area with two kettles and two toasters. Cooking area with a professional Everhot range and other appliances. Wall-mounted Smart TV.
- Butler’s Pantry & Service Area – Equipped with a large, modern refrigerator, two dishwashers, double sinks, and everything else needed to whisk away the remains of a dinner party.
- Cloakroom (Ground Floor)
- Tea and Coffee Alcove (First Floor) – A lovely little detail: Get your morning cuppa without journeying to the ground floor.
- Cinema Room (Lower Floor) – We’ve brought the big-screen to you: 126-inch screen with surround sound and an extensive film library plus X-Box, DVD/BluRay, and internet access, Kinect, mood lighting, and cosy sofas and bean bag chairs to sink into.
- Games Room (Lower Floor) – With pool table and handcrafted bar.
- Children’s Playroom (Lower Floor) – Little hands will find plenty to stay busy with here. There’s also a sink and an extra fridge.
- Gym (Lower Floor) – Work off yesterday’s libations with a round of Pilates or free weights.
- Mud Room (Lower Floor)
Amenities + Other Details:
- Cinema Room with X-Box, Kinect and an extensive film library.
- 7 Seater hot tub with stunning views towards Ben Lomond.
- Large oven, hob and induction hob
- 3 Dishwashers
- 5 Fridges
- Full central heating plus open fires in the sitting room and wood burning stove in the dining room and study
- Integrated surround sound: Dock your iPhone and use the Sonos app for music.
- Nespresso Coffee Machine
- Baby-friendly supplies: 2 cots, 2 high chairs, changing mat, bottle warmer and baby food processor. Stairgates available.
- Hairdryers (each bedroom)
- House’s water supplied from a genuine Highland Spring
At Stuckgowan House, arched doorways, lancet windows, and other Gothic and Norman references abound, reminding occupants of the area’s storied history of clan battles and cattle-lifting. And yet this spectacular house remains graceful and modern, stocked with all of the things a 21st-century visitor might want. Light-filled rooms and stunning lake and forest views make Stuckgowan House the perfect choice for large parties looking for an exceptional setting for that weekend away.
Location & Places of Interest
- Places of Interest
Loch Lomond Boat Hire
Wild by Nature
Loch Lomond Aquarium
Golf at Cameron House
Golf at Buchanan Castle
Loch Lomond Sea Planes
Places to Eat
Lodge on Loch Lomond
The Inn & Inverbeg
The Loch Lomond Arms
The Village Inn – Arrochar
The Claret Jug
House of Darrach
Three Sisters Bake
Old Mill Killearn
Groceries can be delivered from Asda
History of Stuckgowan
In Search of Stuckgowan – A Taste of History
In scanning the history of this stretch of the highlands along Loch Lomond we hope to inform newcomers and help the curious find their way into the historical hinterland.
This was an area troubled for centuries by feud and dispute until, out of the Industrial revolution and political turbulence, there emerged a beautiful house which enhanced it’s marvellous setting.
The house dates from before 1820 and was built with elegant lancet windows and arched doorways as Gothic and Norman references but above all with grace and balance.
Its environment, however, has its darker side with a history of clan battles, cattle lifting even brigandry. Sir Walter Scott’s novels rushed off the shelves bearing stories inspired by the history of the area. Local rumour suggests that Rob Roy was penned in part in the House. We have found nothing to suggest that this is correct but see later.
We have started on a collection (more a miscellany) of appendices which we hope are of interest but also with links to the area.
Warning – names, be it of place or family, change over the years.
Since the early 13th century a sweep of the western side of the Loch, (including what we grandly still call The Stuckgowan Estate) has been owned by just 5 families.
1235 to 1718 – The MacFarlanes –
The MacFarlanes were warriors, but occasional cattle lifters and brigands, often living outside the law and feuding with their neighbours, the Colquhouns. Outlawed by parliament and beset by debt, the MacFarlanes fell on hard times and in 1718 the Stuckgowan lands were sold. Later in the century the remainder of the Macfarlane lands became part of the Colquhoun Estate.
1718 -1799 – The Simes –
John Simes, a butcher from Edinburgh, bought the Stuckgowan lands. Little is known of the family but they eventually sold to John McMurrich (possibly together with his brother Malcolm).
1799 – 1879 The McMurrichs
Little is known as to any previous dwellings but John McMurrich (1758 – 1847) came to be known as the creator of Stuckgowan house. The early 19th century saw vast changes. John, a merchant from Glasgow, was clearly the driving force responsible for the graceful property we can enjoy today. Add to that the beautiful gardens, glimpses of which remain even after years of neglect and lodges built with style and we can start to measure the extent of his achievements.
As was the practice at that time, the lands were settled in a form of trust and on his death James McMurrich became the Life Renter and Laird. Not withstanding the sale to the Colquhouns, it seems he continued to live on the Estate until his death.
1879 – 2011 – The Colquhouns –
Sir James Colquhoun left instructions in his will to purchase the Stuckgowan Estate if ever it came on the market. That wish was realized in 1879. The Colquhoun lands now ranged all along the side of the loch. The Stuckgowan Estate merged into the Colquhoun lands and, bit-by-bit sales diminished the mix of properties that had been assembled by the McMurrichs.
In turn the house was a home, a small hotel and then, in 2011, the shell of the old Estate House, including the gardens, north lodge and 34 acres of wild highland hillside was sold to the current owners.
With the framework of extended stewardship by these families there is a range of stories that hover between folklore, fable and real history.
Two of the best known are:
- 1592 – The murder of Sir Hugh Colquhoun. One of the best fireside stories with many twists and uncertainties with revenge for infidelity, clan feud, and fratricide amongst the motives. Each version has the MacFarlanes heavily involved but it was Sir Hugh’s brother who was executed in November.
- 1603 – The Battle of Glen Fruin engaging the Colquhouns with a range of foes including the MacFarlanes. The Colquhouns suffered a massive defeat but it was the political consequences on their adversaries, which seems to have had a lasting effect.
In the 18th and 19th centuries the savagery of the past slowly gave way to an explosion of wealth, scientific and technical advances, tourism, architecture and literature – all seemed to touch Stuckgowan.
Glasgow’s wealth grew out of trade and industry. John McMurrich was a Glasgow merchant – we believe a wood merchant and along with many of his contemporaries he ‘moved’ to the country. Whether he foresaw the tourist boom that followed is uncertain. It seems likely that he continued some ‘wood merchant’ dealings from Stuckgowan.
David Napier one of the creators of steamship travel pioneered some of the important scientific and technical advances in steamship design and bought his paddle steamer ‘Marion’ to Loch Lomond in 1818. Napier and John McMurrich eventually became partners and Tarbet prospered on the tourist trade. Marion’s success and Napier’s wider foresight and business drive played no little part as seed corn for the worldwide changes as sail gave way to steam.
As it happened the steamers promoted Loch Lomond as a tourist attraction.
Stuckgowan itself became a place to visit.
“…Here the stranger previous to proceeding on his journey may visit the romantic pleasure grounds of Stuckgoune belonging to Mr McMurrich who has afforded every facility for the lover of nature to enjoy her in her wildest moods”
Over the years there has been a procession of complimentary references including…
“Shortly before reaching Tarbet, there is seen a pretty white mansion with woody recesses leading up to the mountains behind, and umbrageous lawns spreading gently downwards to the brink of the lake. This is Stuck Gown — pronounced…stugoon”
2010 Louis Stott’s Blog
“Not far south of Tarbet a splendid regency cottage, Stuckgowan, is exquisitely situated above the A82. In its architecture it is one of the finest houses in the National Park…..”
So notwithstanding her age the house has retained her charm born out of her architectural excellence. This in-turn raises one of the questions to which we have sought an answer.
If there was an Architect, who was he or she?
We will happily play Watson to any architectural Sherlock.
Whoever was responsible, the house has not just charm but a unique quality, which more than merits its Grade A listing.
The mystery of the Architect’s identity is just the first of the questions that remain unanswered including when exactly was she built and is there any basis for the local rumour that Sir Walter Scott wrote part of Rob Roy in the house.
Ross Priory rightly lays claim to close connection with Sir Walter. Was Stuckgowan built by the time he visited the Loch in 1817? Even Ross Priory was probably ringing to the sound of Masons hammers at that time. Certainly Sir Walter’s research for the book included a trip to the head of the loch and he would have passed Stuckgowan but we cannot say whether he stayed or even visited. However a clear link with Sir Walter comes later through Frances Jeffery (later Lord Jeffery) who stayed in the house nearly every year between 1821 and 1838. He was an editor, critic, poet, lawyer, politician and later a judge. Sir Walter refers to him as ‘my particular friend’. Hector Buchanan of Ross Priory was a friend and close associate of Sir Walter and it would be strange if their common interests in literature, publishing, the Loch, their friendship and mutual profession did not draw these three together at Stuckgowan.
Whilst we cannot say many of the ‘great slept here’ Lord Francis and David Napier must rate as important men of their time.
Perhaps the guest book starting in 2013 will be of greater interest to future historians but it is not just the famous who should raise our interest in the past.
The Appendices will we hope become a growing miscellany of interesting snippets. They already include ‘The Stuckgowan Estates Act 1879’ a tipping point for Stuckgowan and one which anticipated the important changes in Land Law just three years later.
Somehow we hope those who are interested will end with an overview of the sweep of history which includes savagery, lawlessness, financial ruin, amazing progress, cultural changes, decay and now, through to a time when the fabric of the house is refreshed and she takes her charm on a new adventure.
The North Lodge will be restored and with it a more domestic history – an office, possibly the home for the ‘Robinson the fox killer’ keeper of the highland terriers, a refuge perhaps for second world war evacuees (are they still alive?) and a mini architectural gem with Norman arched diamond paned frontage windows, but sadly no more the driveway sweeping up from the loch edge to set off its humble excellence.
Slowly we hope to recover the history of the ‘Gardens’ by returning them at least in part to their former glory, but for now, the battle of the rhododendrons continues.
Please enjoy the house with all its facets.
Check Availability & Book
Example 3 Course Menu
Seared Scottish Scallops Charred Sweetcorn, Sweetcorn Puree & Cured Ham
Slow Roast Rare Breed Pork Belly Confit potatoes & Braised Greens
Roasted Peach Pain Per Du Sweetened Ricotta
3 Courses £45
Example 8 Course Taster Menu
Whipped Goats Cheese Apple, Choux
Cured Salmon Cucumber, Buttermilk
Pressed Pork Peas, White Truffle
Salt Aged Beef Tartare Pickled Vegetables, Egg Yolk Jam
Scottish Scallops Chorizo, Puy Lentils
Spiced Duck Butternut Squash, Pineapple, Scratchings
Peach Tarragon, Ricotta, Brioche
80% Chocolate Blackberries, Stout
Multi Course Tasting Menus from £80
We strongly recommend you make your reservation with Mark as soon as you have confirmed your reservation with us, he is very popular and gets booked up many months in advance.
Mark also offers:-
Home style meals. (Both plated and sharing style)
Michelin style multi course tasting menus. (5 to 15 course)
Pre Packed Picnic
Posh picnics cooked and served on location
BBQs & open flame cooking
Hands on cookery classes
Demonstration & dine dinners
Hen party afternoon teas
Secret chef dinner parties (prep, set up then leave allowing client to claim my cooking as their own)
Elaborate hot and cold buffets
Street food style catering
Stuckgowan Pamper Parties (Mini Treatments)
15 minute treatments – Prices: Up to 10 treatments £14 each, thereafter £16 each
(2 therapists will attend for 10+ treatments)
Nail File and Polish
Nails are filed and painted in block colour (nails should be polish free)
(Upgrade to gel polish for an additional£8.00 – 30mins)
Foot File and Polish
Nails are filed and painted in block colour (nails should be polish free)
(Upgrade to gel polish for an additional£8.00 – 30mins)
Back and Shoulder Massage
De Stress those tense shoulders with this deep massage
Body brushing and exfoliation
Get rid of all those dead skin cells leaving the back smooth and boosting circulation
Great for headaches and tension
Cleanse, Exfoliation, Tone and Moisturise
Relaxing massage to the face
Lower Leg and Foot massage
Hand and forearm Massage
Terms & Conditions
- A non-refundable 50% deposit is required to secure your booking, this can be done by bank transfer, PayPal or cheque
- All guests will be required to complete a brief medical questionnaire for insurance purposes.
- Cancellations on the day will still be charged for
- Alcohol consumption should be kept to minimum
Terms & Conditions
Treatments provided by Lomond Beauty please call Lesley direct to make your booking on 07875367822 or email ku.oc1519417845.ytua1519417845ebdno1519417845mol@y1519417845elseL1519417845