Glenapp Castle Hotel's Story
The castle and surrounding estate have a rich history. The Glenapp Estate was already well established under the ownership of the Earl of Orkney when the industrialist, James Hunter (later to become the deputy Lord Lieutenant of Ayrshire), acquired it and commissioned in 1870 the celebrated Edinburgh architect, David Bryce, to design a suitably magnificent home for him.
Bryce was a leading proponent of what came to be known as Scottish Baronial style: combining elements of the Gothic and Renaissance design to create the grandeur and fairytale appearance we recognise today. The castle’s mellow sandstone battlements, topped with soaring turrets and towers, have earned Glenapp a rightful place as one of the most romantic luxury castles in Scotland.
The castle sits within acres of heady grounds. Gardens of exotic plants that date back to Victorian times alongside a lustrous forest of giant sequoias and even a surprisingly grand Oak that came from a seed originally planted by King Charles II at Longleat. On the sea-side of the castle – that overlooks the Firth of Clyde and beyond to Ailsa Craig – is a brilliantly symmetrical, perfectly planted Italianate garden cooked up by the legendary horticulturist Gertrude Jekyll.
The castle became the family seat of the Earl of Inchcape in 1917, and it was where Winston Churchill, the then Prime Minister, was a guest in 1944 to discuss the D-Day landings with President Eisenhower. (His visit is marked today by a knowing portrait in the elegant library.) The Earl earned the aristocratic styling through his lucrative business ventures with P&O (formerly the Peninsular and Oriental Steam Navigation Company).
The castle was sold on a few times until 2015, when Glenapp was acquired by Paul and Poppy Szkiler. Paul is the Chairman of the Truestone Group. Both Paul and Poppy focus on building businesses not simply to create profit but to address social and environmental challenges from Africa to Asia as well as here in the UK.
Glenapp Castle Hotel welcome to the Nazani Tea Family!