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Fairnilee House

Galashiels, Scottish Borders

An imposing Edwardian mansion in a spectacular setting rising above the river Tweed, in the heart of Scott country.

Fairnilee House

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Fairnilee House

Festive Offer: 10% discount on a 7-night holiday from Monday 20th December 2021.

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Overview

An imposing Edwardian mansion in a spectacular setting rising above the river Tweed, in the heart of Scott country.

Set in 380 acres of early-Edwardian landscaped gardens, wildflower gardens, park and woodland

The house is approached by three magical drives, a long, tree-lined avenue from East Lodge, an historic route from the south shaded by ancient beech trees and a drive from Bogle Lodge through the densely wooded Crow Plantation, leading to a grand gateway, with a dramatic S-bend bringing you face to face with Fairnilee House.

The Scottish Baronial mansion, with its corner towers, crow-stepped gables and red sandstone dressings encrusted with gargoyles, was designed by the Glasgow architect John James Burnett and is perhaps his best work in this style. A high screen wall punctuated by elaborate cast-iron gates links the 1904-5 mansion to the romantic ruins of Old Fairnilee, dating from 1600 – a notable feature of the wonderful Edwardian walled gardens. Beyond the gardens, there are many acres of stunning woodland and parkland. The Southern Upland Way runs through the middle of the estate.

The house is rich in original period features and decorated with floral fabrics, vibrant wallpapers and bright paint colours, reflecting its Edwardian heritage. In a house of this quality and scale, it is hard to select standout features, but the main hall and galleried first-floor landing are truly resplendent with original wood panelling and intricate carvings. Also notable is the double-aspect drawing room, with its towering 24-pane sash bay windows.

Comprising a country-style kitchen with dining table, formal dining room, drawing room, morning room, library and cloakroom, the ground floor delivers more than enough space for large groups both to enjoy company and seek out blissful isolation. Further to this, however, the lower ground floor offers a large cinema room with an open fire, three-quarter size snooker table and French doors leading to the spacious terrace and gardens, as well as a study, children’s playroom, table tennis room, gym, professional catering kitchen and laundry room.

Moving upstairs, four principal bedrooms lead off from the galleried first-floor landing. Each of these large, en-suite rooms offers its own charms: the grand Inchcape boasts a splendid bathroom with a free-standing rolltop bath and walk-in shower; Craigmyle affords sweeping views over the gardens from its large, triple-aspect windows and features an adjacent dressing room/children’s room; Donald features a romantic four-poster bed, and pretty Alexander has a cleverly concealed dressing table.

A further staircase with carved handrail leads to a mezzanine level with a family bathroom and then up to the second floor, which is home to the spacious twin bedroom, Thalia, with an adjacent bathroom and the dormitory-style bedroom, The Ark. This is the ideal spot for children, with four single beds, two of which can be configured as a super-king bed on request.

It is not just indoor space that Fairnilee has in spades - adjacent to the house is an enclosed walled garden extending to approximately two acres, bursting with formal and wildflower gardens, a fruit cage and extensive lawns. A large terrace, accessed from the cinema room, leads out to these magnificent gardens and makes the perfect sheltered place for al fresco dining with outside dining furniture and a gas barbeque. Guests are welcome to enjoy a game of badminton (you’ll find the net set up on the site of the original Edwardian tennis court) and to explore the parkland and woodland surrounding the house during their stay.

Property details

Lower Ground Floor

Please note that due to the topography of the land on which the house is built, this floor is at ground level.

Small lobby with space for outdoor boots and coats.

Playroom with a good selection of toys for younger guests. Please note that this is currently closed in order to comply with COVID-19 protocols.

Cinema room with huge corner sofa, 86” cinema TV screen with surround sound, 3/4-size snooker table, log fire, seating area and French doors leading to terrace.

DVD library cupboard.

Large study with desk and storage.

Cloakroom with basin and WC.

Gym with rowing machine, weights and yoga mats.

Table tennis room.

Small bar with sink and shelving / storage.

Large, fully-equipped catering kitchen with Salamander, Buffalo griddle, two large Baumatic catering gas ovens each with 5-ring gas hobs, heated service counter with warming drawers, prep units, four sinks, dishwasher, catering-size fridge and freezer, and extensive catering equipment. Please contact us if you would like to arrange a cook for all or part of your stay.

Three walk-in larders, one with a catering freezer.

Laundry room with two sinks and commercial-size washer and dryer.

Ground Floor

Outer entrance hall.

Downstairs cloakroom with two basins, two WCs and hanging space.

Inner entrance hall.

Stairs leading to lower ground floor. 

Impressive main hall with original panelling and parquet flooring.

Drawing room with two 3-seater sofas and five armchairs, log fire and grand piano.

Dining room seating 16 guests with log fire, extensive dinner service and glassware and Alexa Smart Speaker.

Butler’s pantry leading directly to adjacent dining room with dumb waiter to catering kitchen below. Sink, dishwasher, freezer and tableware.

Second set of stairs to lower ground floor.

Breakfast kitchen with a four-oven Redfyre with two hot plates, large corner fridge, combination microwave oven, warming drawer, dishwasher, two-ring induction hob, boiling tap and larder. Dining area for eight with Digital Smart TV.

Library with log fire, two 2-seater sofas, card table, and an excellent selection of books, games and jigsaws.

Morning room with two 3-seater sofas, log fire, Digital Smart TV and seating.

Cloakroom with basin and WC.

Access to garage for storage of bicycles, golf clubs, fishing rods and other outdoor kit.

First Floor

The principal bedrooms on the first floor are set around a superb galleried landing.

Inchcape – bedroom one:

Outer dressing area with hanging space and storage, leading into a large bedroom with super king bed, dressing table, sofa and electric fire.

En suite bathroom with free-standing roll top bath with handheld shower, walk-in shower, heated towel rail, basin and WC.

Donald – bedroom two:

Super king four-poster bed, fitted wardrobe, chest of drawers, dressing table and electric fire.

En suite bathroom with bath with shower over, heated towel rail, basin and WC.

Craigmyle – bedroom three:

Super king bed, chest drawers of drawers, seating area, dressing table and decorative fireplace.  

Adjacent children's bedroom / dressing room with single truckle bed with additional pull-out single bed, dressing table, fitted cupboards with hanging space and shelving.

En suite shower room with large walk-in shower, basin and WC.

Alexandra - bedroom four:

King size bed, fitted cupboards with hanging space and shelving (one of which opens to reveal a concealed dressing table with mirror), sofa and electric fire.

En suite shower room with walk-in shower, basin and WC.

Mezzanine Level

Family bathroom with bath with handheld shower, heated towel rail, basin and WC.

Second Floor

A second Alexa Smart Speaker positioned on the landing allows music to be heard through the main part of the house.

Thalia - bedroom five:

One metre wide (continental size) twin beds, fitted wardrobe with hanging space and shelving, sofa and electric fire.

Adjacent shower room with walk-in shower with rainforest showerhead, basin and WC.

The Ark – bedroom six:

Dormitory-style bedroom with four single 3’ beds, two of which are zip and link and can form a super king bed on request, dressing table, chest of drawers and privacy screen for dressing.

Outside

Adjacent to the house is a magnificent, fully-enclosed walled garden extending to approximately two acres with both formal and wildflower gardens, extensive lawns and the romantic ruins of the old house.

Leading out from the cinema room is a large terrace with outside dining furniture and a gas barbecue.

A badminton net on the site of an Edwardian tennis court is available for guest use.

There is extensive parkland and woodland surrounding the house. Guests are welcome to walk on the wider estate, avoiding fields where there is stock grazing. 

Parking

There is ample parking in the forecourt opposite the front door.

Babies & Children

A travel cot, mattress, highchair and changing table are available on request. 

Dogs

Three dogs are welcome at a charge of £25 per dog. Dogs must be kept to the lower ground and ground floors, and are not allowed on the furniture or on carpeted areas. Dogs must be clean and dry before entering the principal rooms on the ground floor.

Guest Amenities

Luxurious bed linen and towels are provided for all guests along with guest amenities. An electric fan and a hairdryer are provided in each bedroom.

Wi-Fi & Mobile Coverage

Fibre broadband is provided. Mobile coverage is poor on most networks but generally improves outside. A landline is provided for guest use.

Heating

The house has oil central heating throughout in addition to underfloor heating in all the bath and shower rooms, and log fires can be lit on request in the drawing room, morning room, dining room, library and cinema room.

Guest Privacy

Two flats in the far wing of the property are retained by the family for very occasional use. They have independent access and the owners fully respect guest privacy. 

There is a full-time House Manager / Gardener who lives on the estate and is on hand to assist with any queries, light fires and refill log baskets.

Fishing

Fishing on the Fairnilee beat can be booked through FishPal.

Location

Activities

Children and families

Children and families

Here at Crabtree & Crabtree, we like to think we’ve pulled together some rather nifty ideas to keep tots to teens happy and entertained during your stay.

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Fishing

Fishing

Welcome to the realm of the king of fish, the mighty River Tweed. Every year thousands of Atlantic Salmon make their way up river, an annual odyssey that is one of nature's miracles.

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Classes at your holiday home

Classes at your holiday home

Enjoy art, cookery, photography, flower or chocolate classes or whisky tasting in the comfort of your own holiday home...

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Historic houses and castles

Historic houses and castles

With more stately homes, castles and historic sites here than you can shake a proverbial stick at, visitors are quite simply spoilt for choice.

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Wildlife

Wildlife

Our region is home to outstanding scenery which boasts emerald forests, pristine lochs and rivers, heathery hillsides, sweeping moorlands as well as a picture perfect coastline.

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Horse riding

Horse riding

Horse riding is intrinsically linked to the history and heritage of the area and goes right back to the 13th and 14th centuries where townspeople would ride the clan’s boundaries to protect their common lands. Thankfully our riding pursuits today are not quite so dramatic!

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Shopping, arts and crafts

Shopping, arts and crafts

We are extremely fortunate to have a region where independent shops are king, and to have an area flowing with creativity through its talents in arts, crafts and textiles.

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Walking

Walking

From the lush green uplands to shimmering sea, the area boasts a hugely diverse and enticing landscape that is perfect for exploring on foot. From gentle rambles to long-distance hikes, there are a vast array of trails and waymarked routes for newbie walkers or experienced alike.

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Museums, galleries and culture

Museums, galleries and culture

Our museums tell the story of Borders people and provide a unique insight into our region’s heritage and culture, such as the turbulent past of the Border Reivers or the tragic tale of exiled Mary Queen of Scots.

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Golf

Golf

There are 40 golf courses in Northumberland, and another 21 in the Scottish Borders offering visitors an incredibly wide and varied range of golfing options.

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Adventure Sports

Adventure Sports

If you love a challenge or just crave a little excitement away from the day-to-day bustle of working life, we have lots to offer - whether it be watery pursuits, muddy blasts or thrill seeking, adrenaline-charged adventures.

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Cycling & mountain biking

Cycling & mountain biking

Whether you ride fast or slow, on-road or off-road, there is something uniquely special about enjoying some outdoor time on two wheels. Here in the region we have something for everyone from high-energy mountain biking blasts to gentle forest paths the whole family can enjoy.

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Shooting

Shooting

For sheer variety alone Northumberland and the Scottish Borders are irresistible to any gun.

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Ancestral history research

Ancestral history research

Crabtree & Crabtree know that tracing the history of your family can be a wonderful journey of discovery. Here are our top tips for starting your family tree.

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Spas and beauty treatments

Spas and beauty treatments

Everyone needs a little time-out to relax and for many that may involve a little pampering, the chance to experience new therapies, or simply some dedicated ‘me time’ to enjoy or practise disciplines which bring a sense of well-being and good health.

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Services

Cooks and chefs

Cooks and chefs

Make your stay hassle-free with your own personal cook

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Additional housekeeping

Additional housekeeping

Award yourself a real break and let us provide a pair (or more) of helping hands.

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Dog sitting

Dog sitting

Our experienced dog sitters will look after your furry friends whilst you are out exploring.

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Babysitting and nannies

Babysitting and nannies

Relax, explore the local area, enjoy a long lunch or a romantic evening out by hiring one of our fully qualified registered and experienced nannies or babysitters to come to your house.

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Wine delivery

Wine delivery

Crabtree & Crabtree have teamed up with Corney & Barrow one of the longest established independent Wine Merchants in the UK to offer a bespoke service.

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Beauty and spa treatments

Beauty and spa treatments

Everyone needs some pampering, whatever the occasion.

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Fresh flowers

Fresh flowers

Fresh cut flowers delivered to your holiday home.

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Holiday photography

Holiday photography

Family holidays, reunions and honeymoons kindle priceless moments that deserve preserving.

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Reviews

Location Rural - 7 miles from Galashiels.
Dogs
  • Three dogs are welcome at a charge of £25 per dog.
Arrival / Departure
  • Typical arrival day: Friday during high season but can be flexible on request.
  • Arrival time: 4pm
  • Departure time: 10am
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View of the garden and hills from Fairnilee House
The little things we love...
"My favourite part of the house is the original Edwardian fuse box in the main hall. It’s one of those quirks of the evolution of a home that it has remained intact and it’s absolutely fabulous!"
Emma Crabtree, founder of Crabtree & Crabtree
email us or give us a call on 01573 226711 for details.

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