Veil is drawn back on Lews Castle

The guest lounge area downstairs.
The guest lounge area downstairs.

Hundreds of visitors piled through the doors of Lews Castle, Stornoway during Friday’s Open Day keen to appreciate the restored building in all its glory.

And for those who decided to go along for a peak at the restored public rooms and guest bedrooms the general opinion on the work was ‘Excellent’.

Becky Catterall welcomed guests to the plush bar area off the ballroom.

Becky Catterall welcomed guests to the plush bar area off the ballroom.

General manager at the castle, which is managed by leisure firm ‘Natural Retreats’, is Markus R Carrington, who said of the work: “Lews Castle has been a fantastic restoration project to save an iconic landmark on the Outer Hebrides, not only creating a new visitor attraction and destination, but also rejuvenating a community.

“Only having vecome involved in the final stages of this project, I have been lucky enough to help establish operations on site and assist with the delivery of the new stylish and luxurious apartments.”

During the afternoon and early evening adult guests were welcomed with drinks and canapes, whilst during the day craft tables, face painting and cupcake decoration kept mini guests entertained.

Although the lower, more formal rooms, of the castle have been open for some time the upper floors, where guests will be accommodated in luxurious rooms and apartments, had not been revealed to the public until Friday.

The smaller guests on Friday made themselves at home in the Ballroom.

The smaller guests on Friday made themselves at home in the Ballroom.

The design team in these areas worked hard to create a blend of the classic and contemporary in the rooms and apartments to suit the castle and its setting.

They also worked with local businesses to incorporate their products in the overall design.

Margaret Ann Macleod, Brand Director from Harris Tweed Hebrides, said: “Over the last year we have worked closely with Natural Retreats and the interior designers at NoChintz to design and suppy the Harris Tweed fabric used in the rooms at Lews Castle - on headboards, sofas, chairs and throw cushions - to achieve a Hebridean look with a truly modern twist.

“We are thrilled to see our upholstery weight Harris Tweed used in the rooms and I hope that visitors to Lews Castle will be inspired to find out more about the tweed and its rich history with the Outer Hebrides.”

One of the simple but luxurious rooms at the castle.

One of the simple but luxurious rooms at the castle.

A total of 23 bedrooms in a flexible configuration of individual suites and apartments with one to three bedrooms are available.

Each room is named after an iconic Hebridean or Scottish cultural reference, such as the ‘Calanais Suite’ taken from the Callanish Stones, also the ‘Matheson Suite’ named after the castle’s original owner and ‘Airinis’ referring to one of the region’s lighthouses.

The ground floor rooms can be exclusively hired for private events such as weddings, conferences and other celebrations.