Featured image of Stonefield Castle

Stonefield Castle Hotel- History & Architecture

LocationTarbert, Argyll and Bute, Scotland (Google Maps)
Open for VisitorsYes
Owned byStonefield Castle Hotel Group
Official WebsiteStonefield Castle
Rooms AvailableYes (Stay, Weddings, Events)

Set on 60 acres of woodland gardens, Stonefield Castle was built in 1837 and is a magnificent example of Scottish baronial architecture. Stonefield Castle Hotel is a ‘west coast’ woodland estate landscape in Scotland driving thousands of visitors annually.

Stonefield Castle History

The castle was built in 1837 on the site of an earlier building, probably known as Barmore. The new castle was built for John Campbell (1788-1857) by William Henry Playfair, one of the leading architects of 19th century Scotland. Campbell was the great-great-grandson of Sheriff of Argyll, Archibald Campbell, who had purchased the estate from the McAlisters of Barmore in 1746. John Campbell chose the name ‘Stonefield,’ which is the English translation of ‘Achnacloich’, referring to lands owned by the Campbell family on the shores of Loch Etive.  

The castle was inherited by Campbell’s grandson, Colin G Campbell, and his son Colin C Campbell, both keen gardening enthusiasts and expanded the already spectacular gardens.

Stonefield Castle was sold by the Campbells in 1948 and has been used as a hotel since the early 1950s. For many years, head-gardener David G. Hannah, a recognized expert on Rhododendrons, continued to maintain the gardens at Stonefield.

The castle’s 60 acres of woodland gardens remain in the hotel’s ownership. However, the southern policies, including Barmore Island and Barr Hill, were sold to the Forestry Commission and transformed into commercial forestry around 1960.

Stonefield Castle Architecture

Stonefield Castle Hotel
Stonefield Castle Hotel, by Anne Burgess, is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

Stonefield Castle Hotel is listed as category B and was built in the Scottish Baronial style in about 1837 by architect William Playfair. The castle is an L-shaped, two-storey building with crowsteps, a crenellated tower, and turrets with conical roofs and fine interiors.

In the 1970s, the castle was extended to include a large bedroom wing and dining room on the north and west sides. The impressive four-arched bridge, Viaduct over the Barmore Burn, was also designed by Playfair and constructed in about 1838. To the south of the castle are the Stables and Coach House, also designed by Playfair in about 1839. The tower, a picturesque ruin with a crenellated barrier on the slope of the Barmore valley, was probably constructed at the same time as the viaduct.

There are 36 en-suite bedrooms inside the castle. Three rooms have four-poster beds, and all rooms offer spectacular views of either the stunning gardens or the beautiful Loch Fyne. Each room is individually decorated in a style that is in keeping with the traditional feel of the castle.

The castle boasts an authentic example of a ‘west coast’ woodland garden in Scotland with a diverse collection of cultivars, species, and historic garden features. The gardens boast a fine collection of trees, shrubs, ferns, rhododendrons, camellias, and other plants from the Himalayas, China, Japan, and New Zealand.

Stonefield Castle Wedding fulfilled the dream of many brides by providing a beautiful setting for their perfect day. The picturesque woodlands and gardens alongside the surrounding views of Loch Fyne create a magical environment and make your special day memorable.

With its spectacular views and award-winning food, Stonefield Castle Restaurant serves the best locally caught fresh seafood from Tarbert. They present you with the best Scottish food to make your visit exciting.

Frequently Asked Questions

Who owns Stonefield Castle hotel?

Stonefield Castle Hotel Group has owned the castle since the 1950s.

What loch is Stonefield Castle on?

The castle is located off the A83 some 3km north of Tarbert and 16km south of Ardrishaig in Scotland. It lies on the west shore of Loch Fyne on the lower slopes of Knapdale Forest.

Have you visited this castle before? If yes, why not share some beautiful pictures with us!
You can email us your pictures of the castle at castrumtocastle@gmail.com. Please use the name of the castle in the subject line.
Also, don’t forget to mention your name and social media profile link if you want the credits!

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