“Laid-back boutique motel at the gateway to the Scottish highlands, offering great local food, terrific prices and heaps of atmosphere”
Bare white walls and assorted furniture makes for a simple but stylish look in the 7 bedrooms. As much of the furniture is second-hand/antique, each room is different, but all are the same price. We particularly liked Room 3, pure white except for a yellow row of clothes hooks - the nearest you’ll get to a wardrobe here.
All rooms have chests of drawers to store your clothes, stylish cushions, a hairdryer, kettle and tea/coffee tray, free WiFi and flat-screen satellite TVs with DVD players. When it comes to frills, that’s about as good as it gets - but the tradeoff is the bargain price.
All bathrooms have both tub and shower, except for Rooms 3 and 4, which are shower only. When we visited they were yet to be refurbed, so look rather dated, but you do get a sliver of gorgeous lemony Sedburgh soap, plus shampoo and conditioner.
Room 2 is the Family Room - it has a large oak-backed double bed, plus 2 bunk beds. Room 1 is the quietest. Rooms 5 and 6 are dog friendly. Room 7 has a kingsize bed and great views.
Food is a definite highlight here, as you’d expect with chefs Tom Lewis (who starred on BBC2’s Great British Menu) and Mhairi Taylor (from Glasgow’s Deli Zique and Café Zique) at the helm. The Mhor empire is scrupulous about sourcing locally and sustainably - much of the meat comes from the Monachyle estate, which has its own pigs, Aberdeen Angus cattle, sheep, hens and venison.
If you’re in for an active day, stock up with The Big Cooked Breakfast, including bacon from Mhor’s black pigs, which you see grazing on scrub across the road. We also loved the smoked salmon with scrambled egg served with toasted homemade sourdough.
Unlike the vast majority of hotels or pubs, food is available all day. Mid-morning, pep yourself up with cheese scones, flapjacks or luscious cakes from the Mhor Bakery in nearby Callander. For a light lunch, try the Big Piece Toasty, cut off an enormous ciabatta sandwich. Picnics are available, too. Mhor84 is also the new home for the Mhor Tearoom run by Lisa. Join walkers for an indulgent cream tea served on antique china, or one of her famous giant pink meringues.
Evening dishes are calibrated to appeal to all pockets and tastes. Starters include local delicacies like Kyle of Tongue oysters, Shetland mussels, langoustines or Highland Glen venison charcuterie. Main courses include burgers and steaks from Monachyle. Also popular are braises, like the slow-cooked lamb, which has already become legendary. We tried the cod with roasted carrots, braised shallots and spinach - extremely tasty as well as reasonably priced.
If you’re staying several nights or fancy something posher book into Monachyle Mhor, a 30-minute drive down Loch Voil. Or if you’re in fishy mood, head south to Callander for takeaway or sit-down fish and chips at Mhor Fish. If you’re Mhored out, head for The Cross Keys gastro-pub, half an hour’s drive away in Kippen.
This is a truly inclusive place so children are definitely welcome and will love the relaxed games room. Baby cots and camp beds can be provided and there is a Family Room.
Room 2 is the Family Room, with a kingsize bed and bunk beds. Rooms 1, 3, 5 and 6 have space for an extra bed or baby cot. Rooms 1, 2, 3, 6 and 7 can be twinned. Room 1 is a good choice all-round as it's at the back of the motel, so quieter, and has a bath
Remember baby and child equipment may be limited or need pre-booking
The motel is directly on a main road