Built as a private estate in 1863 and converted into a hotel a century later, this turreted Highland castle at the base of Ben Nevis mountain has carefully preserved the features that made it a favorite of Queen Victoria. Crystal chandeliers hang over the two-story, frescoed Great Hall. Each of the 18 rooms, with their floral wallcoverings and canopies, looks toward the mountain (Britain’s highest), the castle’s own loch, or its walled garden. Take part in the same activities as Inverlochy’s original inhabitants: snooker, clay-pigeon shooting, and trout fishing (the kitchen will prepare your catch). Diners eat traditional dishes such as saddle of rabbit with linnhe prawns, seated on the same furniture the King of Norway gave to the estate’s first owners.
Congratulations to Mei Lin, winner of Top Chef Season 12.