This was our second visit to the house and we all loved it even more this time! The house is spotlessly clean, well equipped and has a great layout for all. The kids loved the playroom, the kitchen and snug became the hang out place, the large tv in the downstairs lounge was perfect for watching Scotland win the rugby and the upstairs lounge with roaring fire a perfect place to relax with a drink at night. The boys discovered fantastic mountain biking tracks in the woods at the back of the house. They were entertained there for hours. We will definitely be back. We have stayed in many big houses with the same group of friends over the years and this is, without doubt, the best by far!
Once again a fab weekend at the pines. Lovely house beautifully equipped, spotlessly clean, toastie warm and so welcoming! Lucy had decorated for Xmas and we has a fab time. Votes were taken and we are planning next year already.
Perfect house to accommodate 20 of us, 10 kids and 10 adults. All the rooms were a good size, plenty of social space and a massive garden with bike tracks/walks at the bottom.
Lucy & Jay were excellent hosts who live onsite.
So much to do in the surrounding area and walking distance of local shops/bars.
In one word: ideal.
In more, have a look below.
First, to sum it up: stunning garden, woods and area, fantastic location to travel to places, spacious and very well kept everything (house, rooms, kitchen, garden, toy room), lovely owners - all at a very reasonable price.
I was organising a 30th birthday for my husband and needed a place for 17 people; a place that was child friendly (we have a little 10 month old girl), with a large kitchen and a large dining area, a cosy lounge / living room where we could enjoy our evenings by the fire, and a spacious garden as I planned lots of outside games (dressed as pirates and following Jack Sparrow's adventures in the five movies!).
This place turned out to be absolutely perfect. The lounge was very nice and cosy, with some boardgames, books, a guitar, and a fireplace. On top of that, the kitchen was very spacious, with two sinks, a really good (industrial) dishwasher (doesn't fit a lot in one go but the cycle lasts an amazing 3-5 minutes! which is a big plus when there are so many people and dishes...). The kitchen was very well equipped, clean, modern and could fit us all in, which was quite amazing.
The rooms were much bigger than we expected, and were all kept to a high standard. The dining room was perfect and, with some candles, it was transformed in the evening into a romantic vintage style dinner celebration area. The garden, ah... I'm not sure what words best to use to describe it, but it was stunning, extremely large and allowed us to play all the games I planned (which was, in itself, quite incredible). And the woods just outside the garden - remarkable. The woods made it worth waking up early and going for a stroll to truly wake up and appreciate the beautiful smells and sights of nature. Simply wonderful.
My husband, our little one, and I chose bedroom 7 on the second floor and Lucy and Jay were so kind and set up a travel cot in there. Everyone was in the living room on the first floor and yet, when we closed the bedroom door, the sound didn't travel (and believe me, it was not quiet in the living room) - so our guests and we could enjoy the evenings without having to try to reduce the volume, and our little girl was still able to sleep undisturbed.
The owners, Lucy and Jay, were very generous, absolutely lovely and really helpful. The location was great; we travelled by car and we went to Ardverikie for quad biking (1h), Loch Ness for sightseeing (40min - 1h), the Cairngorm mountain (40min), whisky distilleries (lots of them, within 20min - 1h) and barrel factory (within 1h).
We cannot wait to come back.
We were a group of ten family members: adults and young adults, and one little dog - and stayed at the Pines House for two weeks. As previous reviewers have noted, the house is really ideal for large group gatherings. It has everything you need for a comfortable stay and more than enough space for our group (we sometimes couldn't find each other in the house --kept forgetting about the lounge on the second floor!). The owners, Lucy and Jay, were very helpful even before we arrived - taking delivery of my life-time supply of Smidge that I'd pre-ordered (and was maybe used by 3 of us just once....really, no need for it). We appreciated the the fresh eggs, their recommendations about where to eat in Grantown, and anything else we had questions about, but they were never intrusive. Location is perfect. We took almost daily short (or longer) walks from the back garden through Anagach Woods.
For visitors new to the area (as we were) we enjoyed:
Craig's Bar - book ahead!
The bus to Boat of Garden, then Steam Railway to Aviemore and back
Cairn Gorm funicular rail, then climb to the top (where it was sleeting and misty)
Fort George, Inverness; Culloden battlefield
...and much more. The people of Grantown were/are very, very friendly. Would definitely stay again.