Visitors returning to Loch Melfort Hotel may already have noticed some exciting changes since our re-opening in April. With the extension of our Restaurant and outdoor decking proving popular with guests, our previous Bistro space has been transformed into a new gift shop, packed full Scottish keepsakes to remind you of your Highland getaways.
Alongside this new addition, the Loch Melfort Plant Centre has also been expanded; a one-stop shop for locally grown plants, including some rare and unusual varieties.
Here’s 5 reasons why you should pay a visit to our new Highland gift shop and plant center …
Take Dougal home with you
One of the main attractions to our Scottish coastal retreat has got to be our trio of handsome Highland cows, Dougal, Campbell, and Macdonald. Our charming boys delight guests every day as they plod along to the fencing for breakfast and dinner. They give animal lovers a front row seat to their table manners, alongside a tolerance for the cheeky goats trying to muscle in on their grub.
The only brown coo of the group, adorable Dougal, has become the unofficial poster boy for Loch Melfort Hotel, famously known for entertaining guests with his enthusiastic scratches against a nearby post. His mild nature always allows for a friendly pat on the head (but we still recommend you approach with caution, sometimes he forgets he’s got those big horns!).
As much as we know he’d love to come home and raid your fridge, Dougal tends to be a bit large to fit in your suitcase, so why not opt for your own mini-Dougal instead? Our new Scottish Highland stuffed animals are a perfect present for everyone, whether they’re young or old.
Support local Scottish brands
We’ve been careful to stock our new Scottish Highlands gift shop with locally sourced treats and crafts, with many of the suppliers recommended directly by our team. Here’s a few of the souvenirs you can pick up during your visit, and help us get small Scottish brands back on their feet.
Do your bit for nature
Perched on the Argyll coast, and only a cartwheel away from Arduaine Gardens, Loch Melfort Hotel couldn’t be better placed to support local wildlife. Why not take a little bit of our commitment to the environment home with you?
Our gift shop is now stocking colourful Insect Hotels; a happy little refuge for minibugs such as woodlice, ladybirds, bees and other tiny critters. These bug B&Bs provide safe, cylindrical spaces where they can lay their eggs, hide from larger predators, and raise their young with a bit of peace.
Our creepy crawly hideaways are a wonderful way to encourage pollination in your garden, and attract bugs that hoover up pesky aphids. It’s also a great opportunity to get involved in a spot of wildlife conservation without a lot of commitment.
Start a new hobby and make your house guests green with exterior envy
Argyll is famed for its ability to host a wide range of exotic plants (due to the warming benefits of the North Atlantic Drift). It’s common for our guests to catch a glimpse of species that are noted for being unusual in this part of the world.
Supplied by family-run Craignish Nursery, Loch Melfort Hotel Plant Centre is already inspiring gardeners and those keen to work on their green thumb. With 38 years’ experience in propagating and wholesaling, the nursery regularly delivers new ranges of herbaceous plants, as well as a lot of our old favourites. They also provide our Loch Melfort Hotel Plant Centre Facebook Group with informative care and yard inspiration posts.
Tea with a view
Despite the extension of our shop, we’ve considered that many of our guests had always loved the casual feel of our café. With that in mind, our new shops space has been furnished with deep, comfy couches overlooking our celebrated island views.
After exploring our little beach and taking in a tour of the hotel’s 17-acre grounds, grab a coffee (and perhaps some cake?), sit back, and while away an afternoon watching the world go by.
Did you know that Loch Melfort Hotel is a Visit Scotland Information Partner? This means we have been recognised as a great source of information about Argyll & The Isles. Looking for more things to do during your visit? Our team are always happy to assist: 01852 200 233 or via email.