Sweep up the drive to the grand home of an illustrious family: Macleans have lived here since 1862, and there are 500 acres of farmland to admire. A winter fire crackles in the guest sitting room, old-fashioned bedrooms are inviting (biscuits, books, lovely views), the peace is deep.
Veronica cooks a generous Scottish breakfast and uses local suppliers for fish, sausages, bacon, eggs and black pudding. She bakes her own bread, makes proper porridge and prepares a bowl of fresh fruit each morning too. Ask her where to have dinner – she has a useful up to date list of good restaurants and pubs.
Stride out on walks straight from the doorstep, the Moray Firth, with Spey Bay’s pod of dolphins, is less than 30 minutes away, or head to Elgin (10 minutes) for a whisky trail around the local distilleries and cathedral ruins. You can borrow bikes here and explore the quiet coastal roads. Gordonstoun School is only five miles away, so this is an easy place to stay if you’re visiting.