There are far too many amazing luxury Scottish holiday components to cover them all in a single article. We'll whet your appetite here with some of the most incredible quality hotels, eateries and experiences to make your self-drive holiday in Scotland truly exquisite.
If you'd like a touch of luxury on your Scottish holiday, just let us know when you submit your enquiry - we'd love to find you something really special. You can review our accommodation options page for more details of the different types of accommodation we can select and book for your holiday in Scotland.
Luxury hotels in Scotland
When it comes to luxury hotels, Scotland has some absolute gems. Set in glorious scenery and incredible buildings, these top-end accommodation options have the potential to make your trip very special. If you'd love to add a bit of luxury to your stay, the great news is that you'll be absolutely spoilt for choice!
Here are a few standouts from our perspective, but if they don't fit into your desired itinerary or there are plenty more where they came from. For a quick and comprehensive overview of Scotland's 5* hotels, you could do a lot worse than this handy guide by Visit Scotland.
Gleneagles - Nestled in the valley outside Auchterarder and boasting beautiful buildings, an incredible spa, Scotland's only Michelin 2-star star restaurant and three championship golf courses, it's easy to see why Gleneagles is so iconic and frequently features among some of the best luxury resorts in the world, let alone in Scotland.
Isle of Eriska Hotel - Who doesn't love a private island? Eriska is one of those places where you immediately know you're somewhere incredibly special. Not far from the west-coast town of Oban, you enter the island via a wooden bridge over tidal waters, and from here you take in the views across Loch Creran, Loch Linnhe and up into the nearby mountains. Breathe a sigh of relief as you find yourself on the private Isle of Eriska! With plenty of walks to explore the island and experience its wildlife, a world-class spa and restaurant and a number of other activity options including golf on the island's private course, we're confident that your stay here will be one to remember for years to come!
The Torridon - The Torridon's tagline is "a place like no other", and there couldn't be a better description for this luxury resort in the heard of the Highlands. Perfectly located for those stopping off while completing the NC500 route, and a destination in its own right, sitting among some of Scotland's most incredible scenery - mountains, lochs, islands and outdoor pursuits on the doorstep and fine dining in-house, what more could you want?
The Balmoral - Right in the beating heart of Scotland's capital, Edinburgh, the Balmoral is one of the country's best-known luxury hotels. The Balmoral's views of the castle can't be beaten, rooms and common spaces are tastefully adorned with bespoke tartan and classic Scottish art, and the Balmoral's award-winning fine-dining restaurant Number One is part of the package. Between its enormous whisky collection (boasting 500 varieties!) and a haven of urban relaxation in the form of its wonderful spa, we think you'll love all that this pinnacle of luxury Edinburgh has to offer.
Kimpton Blythswood Square Hotel - Scotland's second city, Glasgow is particularly known for its cultural and architectural heritage. The glorious Kimpton Blythswood Square Hotel is an excellent place from which to enjoy all that this special city has to offer. Stunning Georgian architecture sets this building apart, while its private gardens provide an oasis just minutes from the bustling city centre. If that's not enough to help you unwind, the luxury spa offering the full range of treatments ought to do it! Why not add Glasgow to your Scottish self-drive itinerary and enjoy it from one of the city's best luxury hotels?
Luxury transport for your holiday in Scotland
Scotland's roads are some of the most scenic in the world. We're a bit biased, of course, but it's certainly not just us who think so! Even Top Gear's team couldn't resist Scotland's roads.
To make the very most of your self-drive holiday in Scotland, make sure you choose the right luxury vehicle to turn the journey into a destination in itself, and an integral part of your luxury Scottish holiday experience.
Tesla - Sleek, powerful and environmentally-conscious without scrimping on the driving experience, Tesla is truly the car of the moment. If you would like to incorporate a luxury electric vehicle into your self-drive holiday, we can arrange to hire a Tesla for your trip. Scotland's electric vehicle infrastructure has improved immeasurably in the last few years, so you'll be able to get from A to B hassle-free in your beautiful Tesla.
Vintage cars - They just don't make 'em like they used to! There's something really special about driving through ancient geological landscapes, visiting places full of culture and history. Make sure your transport measures up too by opting for a vintage car for your luxury self-drive holiday. You can choose from the iconic Jaguar E-type Coupe, Mercedes SL, MGB Roadster and many more - enjoy Scotland's roads in style and make sure your drive is as much fun as the places you'll visit along the way.
Supercars - Maybe you'd like to treat yourself to a supercar to drive on your luxury self-drive holiday in Scotland? If so, we can help! We can source cars to suit all tastes, from the Aston Martin DB11 to the Ferrari F12 Berlinetta and the Porsche 911 Carrera 4S, make sure you enjoy Scotland's splendid scenery in a car that's so much fun to drive that you'll never want to stop!
Don't fancy driving yourself? We get it! Especially if you plan to visit some of Scotland's famous gin and whisky distilleries, you might prefer not to drive yourself, or to take a day or two off from driving. In that case, we can arrange for a private chauffeur to drive you in maximum comfort and style - you'll get to enjoy the scenery and sample distilled delights, and your chauffeur will take care of the rest.
Helicopter transfers - If you're short on time and want to cover as much distance as possible in comfort and style, a helicopter transfer may be your answer. Most of Scotland's luxury hotels offer the option of arriving by helicopter, and this can be a great way to enjoy a unique perspective on Scotland's stunning scenery while saving you enormous amounts of precious time compared with other forms of transport, giving you longer to enjoy your chosen luxury accommodation and experiences. We can always arrange for a hire car to be ready when you arrive, so you can explore the local area at your own pace.
Yacht charter - Scotland's famous West Coast is arguably best experienced from the water. For a different way of getting around during your luxury holiday in Scotland, Scottish Yacht Charters can help. Bareboard hire is available for experienced sailors, although local knowledge is especially important in Scotland's unpredictable waters, so their skippered option may be preferable.
Luxury places to eat in Scotland
If you're a foodie as well as a fan of luxury hotels, the great news is that three of Scotland's best Michelin star restaurants also conveniently happen to be part of three of the hotels we've already profiled in the previous section. It seems that luxury loves company, and these incredible eateries are the perfect complement to the five-star quality accommodation you'll find in their associated hotels. They should not be missed if you're planning a luxury Scottish holiday.
A stay at Gleneagles means that you can dine at the two Michelin StarAndrew Fairlie restaurant (the only restaurant in Scotland to receive this coveted accolade), featuring produce from its own walled garden. Number One at The Balmoral serves modern Scottish cuisine in its luxurious setting. The Isle of Eriska Hotel restaurant, especially known for its extensive cheese selection and 40-page wine list, tops of its private island experience splendidly.
As well as these incredible hotel-linked restaurants, there are a number of others that have earned a Michelin star, and accompanying reputations that places them among the very best luxury restaurants that Scotland has to offer.
Three of our favourite options are:
Loch Bay Restaurant, Isle of Skye - A contemporary Scottish restaurant with French influences run by chef Michael Smith in the stunning former fishing village of Stein on the north-west corner of the Isle of Skye.
The Cellar, Anstruther, Fife - Focusing on seasonal Scottish produce and locally-foraged ingredients, the Cellar's Head Chef, local man Billy Boyter, delights customers from across Scotland, UK and the world with his cuisine in this acclaimed restaurant, and he's great at accommodating the special dietary requirements of guests.
The Kitchin, Edinburgh - Visitors to Scotland's capital are spoilt for choice when it comes to places to eat. We especially love The Kitchin for its motto "From Nature to Plate" - these guys live and breathe seasonal British cooking with a French flair and sustainably-sourced Scottish ingredients.
For more information on where you can dine in luxury in Scotland and further inspiration for your luxury Scottish holiday, see this handy guide from Visit Scotland.
Luxury spas in Scotland
In the case of spas, too, we find that luxury birds of a feather seem to flock together! It would be remiss of us to write about luxury spas in Scotland without giving a mention to the spas at Gleneagles in Auchterarder, The Balmoral in Edinburgh, Kimpton Blythswood Square in Glasgow, and the Stables Spa at the Isle of Eriska Hotel near Oban, all of which we've profiled in our luxury hotels and/or restaurants section above.
If you're not planning to stay at any of these places during your luxury self-drive holiday in Scotland - don't despair! Day visits to all four of these luxury Scottish spas are possible. If you're not passing through these areas at all, you also needn't miss out - the great news is there are plenty more luxury spas to choose from to complete your Scottish holiday.
Here are some wonderful spas to kick back, relax and enjoy the finer things in life while you explore Scotland at your pace:
Stobo Castle, Kelso - This Scottish Borders spa boasts its own fitness studio, a full menu of treatments, an impressive pool, sauna, steam room, hydro spa and relaxation suite, as well as dedicated ladies'-only facilities.
Portavadie, Cowal Peninsula - Loch Fyne's Portavadie Spa is situated on the beautiful Cowal peninsula, part of Argyll's Secret Coast. With a range of treatments, a pool, Scandinavian sauna, steam rooms and plenty of relaxation space, this is a wonderful oasis if you're on a self-drive holiday in Argyll.
Fonab Castle, Pitlochry - The beautiful Fonab Castle will blow you away with its surroundings alone, and its spa is a lovely oasis-within-an-oasis! Featuring a pool, sauna, steam room, thermal suite and a wide range of face and body treatments, you'll have plenty of opportunities to relax whether you're a day visitor or overnight guest at this luxury hotel and spa.
Luxury experiences in Scotland
With luxury accommodation, transport and places to eat, you're almost good to go with your luxury Scottish holiday! If you want to make this the trip of a lifetime, Scotland has plenty of luxury experiences for you to incorporate into your self-drive holiday. Here are a few of our top picks for you to consider. If you'd like us to weave these into an itinerary for you, just get in touch!
Sightseeing by helicopter - Scotland's scenery from the air is a sight to behold. Helicopters are a fabulous, fast and convenient way to get from A to B, but if you've got time to linger, why not take a sightseeing tour and enjoy Scotland from the sky in luxury in your own private helicopter?
Play a round of golf at the Old Course, St Andrews: There's an awful lot in Scotland to keep golf-fans happy, but the jewel in the crown for many is the chance to play at the Old Course in St Andrews. The course has a very exclusive booking process and tee times are often sold out 6-12 months in advance, so please enquire now if you'd like to fit this experience into your luxury holiday in Scotland.
Supercar track day at Knockhill - If you're a supercar lover but have hired something a little more practical (and maybe a tiny bit less fun...) for your luxury self-drive holiday in Scotland, you can book yourself a supercar experience on the track at Knockhill. After a briefing, you'll have the chance to drive an Aston Martin Vantage, or perhaps a Ferrari F430 if you prefer.
Private chauffeur-driven whisky tour with Secret Stills: Elke Kastner and Fergus Gillanders are the west coast's whisky gurus. They'll pick you up and whisk you away on an exclusive tour where you'll get under the skin of some of Scotland's finest distilleries, improving your knowledge of the spirit and of course tasting.
Guided Deerstalking or salmon fishing at Glenapp Castle: A professional stalker will guide you as you follow the trail of deer through secluded glens. Alternatively, you can undertake a guided salmon fishing trip to catch and cook this coveted Scottish prize.