Archerfield House sits on an elevated position in the expansive Archerfield Estate in East Lothian. Situated only a 40-minute drive from the City of Edinburgh, the impressive Grade I listed building harnesses spectacular views of the stretching East Lothian coastline. Named after the Archers of King Edward I who pitched their tents at this location during the English invasion in 1298, the mansion has an intriguing historic past. The building boasts connections with numerous historical figures, including Mary Queen of Scots, Winston Churchill and the Earl of Ruthven, to name but a few. After falling into a state of disrepair in its post-war years, the building was meticulously restored at the turn of the 21st century.
The Mansion House and its surrounding estate is now a renowned travel and golf destination that attract visitors from around the world. In addition to Archerfield House, the extensive grounds are home to a range of unique luxury accommodations including the adjacent Pavillion suites, luxury lodges, Marine Villa, The Cottage and Boathouse. This accommodation is served by the world-class Fletcher’s Cottage spa along with two impressive links golf courses.
In the past, Archerfield House, which is the centrepiece of this magnificent estate has only been let out as an exclusive use venue. However, due to the travel industry experiencing a tumultuous period, it has now adopted a new hotel-hybrid approach. This not only allows guests to still utilise the building as a private venue, but also provides an opportunity for visitors to book individual rooms and experience the house in an exciting new way. I was recently invited to experience Archerfield House and this newly conceived hotel-style approach
Arriving down its lengthy lavender lined drive, you can’t help but be enamoured by the mansion as it comes into view. On entering its pillared doorway you almost feel as if you stepped back in time, its lobby combining an old-world aesthetic with thick rugs, portraits and a beautiful piano. Wandering up its staircase towards the rotunda, additional artwork and intricate tapestries adorn the walls. The light and airy rotunda provides a stunning central point to the house, with staircases veering in numerous directions. Adjoining an intimate lounge area on the second floor is room 3A where I was staying.
On entering its double doors I was completely taken aback by the palatial size of the suite. The room was decorated in a calming hue of creams, yellows and golds, all balanced with an injection of dusky pink from its soft furnishings. Its high-domed ceilings with intricate cornicing were simply breathtaking, elegantly crowned with a large glistening chandelier. Floor to ceiling sash windows draped in opulent curtains graced one side of the room, allowing the summer sun to stream in and provide a glimpse of the estate grounds outside. The opposite side was adorned with artwork, a mirror and a trolly filled with bottled water, Archerfield’s Fletcher’s Cottage Gin liqueur and a welcomed selection of lavishly filled Cannoli’s.
The stunning canopy bed draped in a swathe of golden material was certainly an opulent addition to the room. As I pulled back the luxuriant duvet and slipped beneath the soft comfortable sheets, I felt like I was in pure slumber heaven. Waking up fully rested and staring up towards the impressively decorated interiors, I truly experienced a delightful moment of gratitude. Adjacent to the bed is an elegant sitting area which was a perfect space to enjoy coffee (or something stronger) whilst reading one of the many books available in the room.
At the rear of the room and slightly segregated was a beautifully appointed dressing area connecting to a large bathroom with a walk-in shower and separate bath. The refined dressing area included an antique dressing table, writing desk and large mirrored wardrobe. I must say I felt rather at home here, getting changed, spraying on my fragrance and enjoying the view towards the leafy outlook.
The house had numerous public spaces for guests to enjoy and one of my favourites was the outstanding Principal Room. Decorated in a hue of decadent red the room emanated an exuberant and regal touch. Again, floor to ceiling windows embellished with rich fabrics, a central chandelier and oversized artwork carried on the chic historic vibe of Archerfield House. The sweeping room had such a relaxing ambience that I found it difficult to prise myself away from one of the many comfortable seats.
Although the accommodation does not have any in-house catering facilities, there is a shared kitchen space on the ground floor where guests can help themselves to a range of bottled water, coffee and tea. However, dinner and breakfast, is provided in the Club House located in the estate around a twenty-minute pleasant and scenic walk from the main house. If you do not wish to walk, Archerfield House include an exemplary concierge service that provides a complimentary car to transport guests anywhere around the estate.
The Club House Bar and Restaurant is located near the estate’s renowned golf course and therefore affords views out towards the expanse of manicured green landscape. It is a fairly relaxed affair with an intriguing African inspired decor and an area for both inside and outside dining. The menu offers an extensive range of dishes that utilise quality seasonal ingredients sourced from local suppliers.
Skipping starters, we went directly for a main of Crab Linguine and Fillet Steak which were both equally delicious and full of flavour. As per usual I always manage to fit in some dessert and the selection was quite impressive. The stand out for me was the Roast saffron pear, apple and blackberry crumble tart, perfect for these cooler autumnal evenings.
Breakfast which is also served in the clubhouse is operated using a buffet-style service and includes an array of cereals, pastries and fruits , etc. An additional breakfast menu provides further options including a range of hot dishes. I opted for their spiced banana bread embellished with crispy bacon and drizzled in sweet maple syrup, all I can say is that it was absolutely delicious.
From the moment you walk through its historic doors, Archerfield House provides a truly unique experience for each and every one of its guests. The house manages to strike the perfect balance between providing a luxurious stay along with a relaxed and laid back charm, which personally resonates with me. Its friendly and approachable staff, beautifully appointed unique rooms and tranquil country location all mingle to create the ideal UK staycation. If you are unable to take advantage of hiring the whole venue then this new hotel-hybrid approach is the perfect way to experience this wonderful building and all it has to offer.
Blu Blazer Guy Rating:
Location – 5/5
Customer Service – 4/5
Accommodation – 4/5
Cleanliness – 5/5
Food and Drink – 4/5
Prices from £265 per night at Archerfieldhouse.com