Baby Cot
BBQ
Bikes available
Bluetooth Speaker
Frances' Sketch Pad

Frances' Sketch Pad

Glenloy, Banavie, Fort William, Scotland
from £260
per Night
“Modern minimalism meets wilderness luxury at this couples honeymoon highland hideout – soak in the hot tub under a star studded skye, paint, relax and reconnect in a tranquil and very private “zen den” close to Ben Nevis, Scotland's highest mountain.”
Sleeps: 2    Bedrooms: 1
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Baby Cot
BBQ
Bikes available
Bluetooth Speaker
Coffee Machine
Disabled Access
Dishwasher
Dog Friendly
Family Friendly
Free Parking
Garden
Hairdryer
Heating
Highchair
Hot Tub/Jacuzzi
Induction Cooker
Laptop-Friendly Workspace
Microwave
Mountain Views
Off-Grid
Open Fire/Woodburner
Outdoor furniture
Shower
Sky TV
TV Freeview/Freesat
Washing Machine
Wifi

Cool Features

  • Stunning wild landscape on your doorstep with views of Ben Nevis, wildflower carpets, and wildlife abound.
  • Relax in the luxury outdoor hot tub under star studded skies.
  • The Sketch Pad looks out onto one of the best views from the Estate where Frances loved to paint the beautiful Scottish Highland landscape. In her honour and to inspire our guests' creativity, we always leave a sketch pad, paint, and colouring pencils for visitors to use while they absorb the breath-taking views onto Ben Nevis.
  • Designed on the idea of comfort and modern minimalism, we wanted to create a bespoke lodge that blended in seamlessly with surrounding nature.
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Cool Features
Good To Know

Good To Know

  • Property designed for 2 and can accommodate one child under 3 - highchair and cot with linen available by prior request.
  • Pet friendly up to 2 dogs maximum (pet charge applies).
  • Starter pack of wood upon check in for wood burning stove. Additional wood, coal, kindling and newspaper can be purchased on site.
  • Private on-site parking and Wi-fi throughout.
  • 9 miles from Fort William (where there is an M&S, Aldi, Lidl, Morrisons, Tesco etc).
  • Private Estate grounds with wild gardens and wildlife. Very secluded and quiet location.
  • In the middle of a glen so plenty of walks and cycle routes at your doorstep.
  • The property has a private water supply from Beinn Bhan.
  • Key lockbox on the property.
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Eating

  • French Scottish Fusion dining experience option delivered in-house or in the setting of Inverskilavulin House prepared by the chef owner Jean-Pierre who has worked in several Michelin Star settings.
  • Glenfinnan House Hotel offers fine dining and bar meals on the shores of Loch Shiel by the Glenfinnan monument commemorating Bonnie Prince Charlie.
  • The Ben Nevis Inn offers hearty pub meals and drinks at the foot of Ben Nevis in a cosy and rustic Scottish barn pub setting.
  • The Crannog restaurant, On Fort William Town Pier, serving fresh Scottish seafood from a red-roofed restaurant with fantastic views over Loch Linnhe.
  • Russel's at Smiddy House 2 AA rosette restaurant in the village of Spean Bridge, open for dinner only. The À la Carte menu offers an excellent choice of fine dishes.
  • Lochleven Seafood Café Deli and Shop is situated on the shores of beautiful Loch Leven on the west coast in the Highlands of Scotland.
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Eating
Highlights

Highlights

  • Unrivalled walking opportunities in Glen Nevis or all abilities to get out and reconnect with nature - right on your doorstep!
  • The spectacular Cairngorms National Park lies around 40 minutes' drive.
  • Visit the Glenfinnan Viaduct, which you can cross on the Jacobite steam train also known as the Hogwarts Express - look out for the visitor centre telling the full story of the '45 rebellion.
  • Catch a ferry to the Small Isles of Eigg, Muck and Rum from Arisaig or Mallaig or head over to the sea to Skye and visit the Clan Donald Centre (ferries depart daily from Mallaig (approx. 1hrs drive).
  • Climb Ben Nevis the highest mountain in the UK or visit Nevis Range with MTB trails.
  • Visit the West Highland Museum in Fort William.
  • Sample a local whisky and take a tour of Ben Nevis Distillery or visit the Lochaber Geopark.
  • Visit Neptune's Staircase a spectacular staircase lock comprising eight locks on the Caledonian Canal, built by Thomas Telford.
Read more

Modern minimalism meets wilderness luxury at this couples honeymoon highland hideout - soak in the hot tub under a star studded sky, paint, relax and reconnect in a tranquil and very private "zen den" close to Ben Nevis, Scotland's highest mountain.

Frances' Sketch Pad

Designed on the idea of comfort and modern minimalism Frances' Sketch Pad was designed to create a bespoke lodge that blended in seamlessly with surrounding nature. A ‘zen den' to relax and unwind with all the comforts of the modern world. Ideal for couples seeking ultimate relaxation in a luxury lodge where you can soak in the hot tub with a glass of champagne admiring the views. Hidden away in a clearing amongst the wild, set far from the main road, Frances' Sketch Pad is at the top of the hill which makes the most of the south facing views looking down on what essentially is your own glen. There is a manicured lawn which leads to a small lochan, and a more wild section with species of wild plants and trees, and then your eyes are drawn to the main attraction - the Ben Nevis mountain range in all its glory - wow! It is tantalisingly close".

The Mainardi family have a track record in spoiling guests beautifully which come from a French - Scottish rich heritage of hospitality going back generations. Jean-Pierre (who is also a chef), is the fifth generation of a hotelier family and spent 42 years with Hilton worldwide as a General Manager. He grew up with French Michelin Star chefs in Normandy, France. Edith also grew up within hotels, through the rooms and operations before managing, so together they bring a legacy of experience in both sides of the business. Francis' Sketch Pad, was built in honour of Frances McGuire's late mother Edith Mainardi. Frances loved to paint the beautiful Scottish Highland landscape and the property overlooks the gorgeous views Frances used to love painting. In her honour and to inspire guest's creativity, the family always leave a sketch pad, paint, and colouring pencils for visitors to use while they absorb the breath-taking views onto Ben Nevis".

Step Inside your honeymoon hideaway

The lodge has a bright sun-filled open plan layout with modern kitchen and living zone with flat screen TV, Wi-Fi and log burner for a cosy night in - perfect for cosying up after a day's adventures. The bedroom has a king bed with an uber comfy mattress, gorgeous linens and soft furnishings throughout. The front of the lodge opens up onto a patio that overlooks Ben Nevis and neighbouring mountains for that special wilderness feeling to wake up to where you are surrounded by wildlife and nature. The bathroom is an oasis of calm with walk-in shower, WC, and sink, enveloped by large windows that give over to fantastic views - you just won't want to leave your hideaway. After a day's walking or exploring come home to your own private hot tub for two and soak in the breath-taking views under a star-studded sky. Jean-Pierre your host can organise a special catered dinner or lunch in-house delivered to your hideaway should you require it and if organised in advance. Why not book a wine tasting and cookery demonstration during your stay too.

Stay and play

Whether you just simply want to bliss out, read, walk, paint and spend special time together or try some of the exciting activities that Lochaber also knows as the Outdoor Capital of the UK, this property offers the best of both worlds. You can climb Ben Nevis, UK's highest mountain, take the gondola up to the café and restaurant at the top or try flow trails and forest paths on mountain bikes at the Ben Nevis MTB World Cup track. Head to the spectacular Cairngorms National Park around 40 minutes' drive or for some fabulous walking opportunities you can take in the trails at Glen Nevis. Harry Potter fans can visit the Glenfinnan Viaduct (45 min drive), where you can see the Jacobite steam train also known as the Hogwarts Express - look out for the visitor centre telling the full story of the '45 rebellion. There's also the iconic Glenfinnan monument which commemorates the raising of the Standard by Bonnie Prince Charlie. Head to the small isles for a day trip where you catch a ferry to the Small Isles of Eigg, Muck and Rum from Arisaig or Mallaig or head over the sea to Skye. Visit the West Highland Museum in Fort William or sample a local whisky and take a tour of Ben Nevis Distillery.

Frances' Sketch Pad is just the tonic for couples in love, seeking a highland hideaway and opportunity to share some special moments together. Long lies, lazy days and wide-open spaces with total privacy for two.

Rates:

£260 per night and from £1860 per week.

One-night stays are possible.

Free cancellation for 24 hours. After that, cancel up to 2 weeks before check-in and get a 90% refund. Instalment options available. Check-in is between 3-5pm but if the guests would like to check-in later this can be arranged. Check out is at 11am.

Maximum of 2 dogs. 1 dog is charged at £25 and 2 at £50.

Reviews:

"Simply amazing. Edith and JP showed us the most incredible hospitality and a truly memorable experience. Quick responses, easy and guided check-in, and even cooked us the most amazing French dinner and Scottish breakfast. On top of that, the place is beautifully designed with modern amenities alongside Scottish charm, a fireplace and stunning view. We can't thank them enough and we hope to be back someday!"

"Off the beaten path, and worth the drive! If it's an idyllic setting you seek, this is one of those places. All the modern conveniences of a newly built cottage will provide the comfort you'd expect, but step outside...walk the grounds and feel the history seep through the moss covered forest floor, the rushing stream flowing to the River Loy, and the mist hanging low over the mountains. And do not skip the hot tub! Edith was a lovely hostess and went above and beyond to ensure our stay was comfortable. She greeted us and made sure we understood how things worked, and couldn't have been more helpful!. Inverskilavulin was an amazing stopping point along our Highlands tour, and we hope to visit again one day!"

"Thank you for a wonderful three days. We thoroughly enjoyed your wonderful cottage. You have an incredible property in the most amazing location. An unexpected treat was the meal that Jean Pierre prepared for us: it was absolutely the best meal that we have experienced during our stay in Scotland. It was also wonderful to hear so many stories about Jean Pierre's experiences not only in Scotland but all over the world. Thank you for sharing your remarkable property with us."

"This place is beautiful! Amazing views and the lodge is fantastic, i love that there was paint and paper available to get crafty. The lodge has everything that you could need, it is modern and clean. The hot tub having a build in speaker was also a great touch. Strongly recommend!"

"Wow! we arrived when it was already dark and were amazed but to wake up and also see the views was astounding. Highly recommend to anyone looking for a quiet scenic break."

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Frances' Sketch Pad

We go off grid, under the radar and above the parapet to showcase amazing places to Stay in Scotland. The very "Best Scottish Cottages", collection of accommodation. The unique, the quirky, the hidden and the divine. One stipulation – simply to be the Best.

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