Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Broad Bay House, Lewis

Exactly a year ago, my wife Alison, our friend Clark and myself stayed at Broad Bay House on the Isle of Lewis in the Outer Hebrides. In your dreams you might chance upon another place like Broad Bay House. You might hope that one day there will be accommodation like this throughout Scotland. In reality there is only one Broad Bay House and Ian and Marion have raised the standard far above other establishments. Every detail of the design, construction, materials, furnishings and fittings has been thought out with the visitor's comfort taking priority over expense. The bedrooms and bathrooms were simply superb.

The washing machine, drier and wifi Internet access for weather forecasts were particularly suitable for those that like outdoor adventures in this wonderful land and sea. All this might have been in vain if Ian and Marion were not such perfect hosts. Nothing was too much bother for them. Their approach epitomised what customer service should be about. They clearly enjoyed helping visiting sea kayakers whose hours and needs were far from those of standard guests. They achieved this without being obtrusive.

Unfortunately we were attending evening events in the An Lantair Centre and could not enjoy an evening meal at Broad Bay House. The breakfasts were truly excellent and fuelled our paddles in the surf well into the day. We will just need to return to appreciate dinner! An overall 12/10 then!

The gate at the bottom of the garden leads straight onto Traigh Ghriais, the large beach which borders Broad Bay.

Of course Lewis and Harris are simply wonderful places to visit. We sea kayaked on the west coast of Lewis at Loch Roag.

Lewis and Harris make up the third largest land mass in the British Isles but it is one of the least populated.

People have been visiting here for quite a long time now.....

.... though I doubt the views over the Harris hills have changed much.

We do have an advantage over our ancestors though......

They didn't get to stay at Broad Bay House!