New boutique hotel The Fife Arms, is to open its doors on December 20, bringing to a close a three-year multimillion transformation project.
The hotel is owned by Swiss art dealers Iwan and Manuela Wirth, of internationally-acclaimed art gallery, Hauser & Wirth, who have ploughed their efforts into converting a former Victorian coaching inn in Braemar into a new hotel for the Scottish Highlands.
Following the launch, the hotel will completely be up and running in February 2019, with a spa the final piece of the puzzle.
The hotel’s new interiors are by Russell Sage, of The Zetter Townhouse; The Goring; The Savoy Grill fame, and features over 12,000 historic objects, artwork and artefacts that have been collected over three years in order to tell some of the many stories associated with Braemar.
The hotel’s 46 suites and bedrooms have all been individually designed with unique furnishing and décor – each one a homage to place, person or event with links to the area.
The Fife Arms will feature a handful of bars and restaurants including The Clunie Dining Room with a focus on wood-fire cooking, the hotel’s traditional public bar which is now called The Flying Stag, a Drawing Room that will serve afternoon tea and Elsa’s, an art-deco cocktail bar inspired by fashion designer Elsa Schiaparelli, who visited Braemar.
The hotel will also feature art specially commissioned from artists such as Zhang Enli, Guillermo Kuitca, Subodh Gupta, Bharti Kher and Richard Jackson.
During the hotel’s renovation, a number of other artists were invited to take up residence in Braemar and to immerse themselves in the atmosphere of its surroundings.
Moxon architects, based in Crathie and London, has overseen the refurbishment, headed up by Ben Addy, who grew up in Aberdeenshire and is a director of the Cairngorms Trust.
The hotel is led by general manager, Federica Bertolini, who has been living in Braemar for over two years, having moved from her previous role as manager of the Hotel Tresanton in Cornwall. We speak to her exclusively here about what we can expect from the new property when it opens its doors.
She is joined by deputy general manager, Kirsten Jensen and executive chef Robert Cameron, who has returned to his native Scotland.
Ros Evans has taken on the role of ghillie (or concierge).