The Cluanie Inn has been serving the traveller for over 100 years. Once known as ‘Rhiabuie’, The Cluanie Inn started in 1787 as an isolated staging post, situated where drovers of old turned south for Tomdoun via Loch Loyne, built on the instructions of MacDonnell of Glengarry. This original 2 storey-3 bay house was associated with the coming of improved routes through the Glen.

In the 18th century, such inns were referred to as ‘Kinghouses’, as they were situated on the newly built King’s Highway. The inns were set up with cooperation between the government and the landowner, and were built for both the construction crews and the local people.

After the Union of 1603 and the Free Trade Agreement of 1607 between Scotland and England, which was only implemented 100 years later due to much resistance in the parliament, trade between the countries began to flourish. By the 1750’s, Scotland was seen as England’s pastures and the land around The Cluanie Inn became Highland ‘drover’ country filled with skilled men who moved hordes of cattle and sheep over the Highlands landscape.

Lying between Loch Ness and the Isle of Skye, The Cluanie Inn has also seen history in the making during the turbulent years of the Jacobite risings.

To the West of the Inn at the ‘Bridge of the Spaniards’ in Glen Shiel, a bloody battle was fought in 1719 between troops of England’s King George and the Jacobites, who were supported by Spanish troops who landed at Eilean Donan Castle. It is believed that some Jacobites, after their subsequent surrender, hid at The Cluanie Inn but were eventually captured. The Cluanie Inn is an ordinary dwelling that has stood strong through its past glories. Its rustic design reflects the regional identity of the Highlands.

We believe the weariest of hearts will be restored when you spend time at any of our Black Sheep Hotels. Only once you witness its wonders, will you come to believe in the magic of the Highlands of Scotland!

Great Scots

The Scottish Enlightenment in the 18 century was characterised by an outpouring of intellectual and scientific accomplishments by philosophers, inventors, artists and economists. We pay tribute to the achievements of these Great Scots, who even at their time were held in great esteem in America, Canada and Europe.

Robert Burns

1759 – 1796

Scottish Poet – Also known familiarly as Rabbie Burns, the National Bard, was a Scottish poet and lyricist. He is widely regarded as the national poet of Scotland and is celebrated worldwide. Burns most important achievement is in preserving the language of ordinary Scots at a time when it really did seem that English would become the only tongue for most of Scotland.

Sir Walter Scott

1771 – 1832

Scottish Historical Novelist – Sir Walter Scott was a poet, novelist, ballad-collector, critic and man of letters, but is probably most renowned as the founder of the genre of the historical novel, involving tales of gallantry, romance and chivalry. He was Scotland’s image maker and was crucialin creating the idea of Scotland as itpersists today.

Andrew Carnegie

1835 – 1919

Scottish-born American industrialist who led the enormous expansion of the American steel industry in the late 19th century was also one of the most important philanthropists of his era. He founded the Carnegie Steel Company, which later became part of US Steel. One of the world’s richest men in his days, he is principally remembered for funding large numbers of libraries and educational establishments in the US, Scotland and elsewhere. He always argued that it was the duty of rich men and women to use their wealth to benefit the welfare of the community.

Flora MacDonald

1722 – 1790

Scottish Jacobite Heroine – Flora helped Charles Edward, the young pretender, the Stuart claimant to the British throne, to escape from Scotland after his defeat in the Jacobite rebellion of 1745–46. The daughterof Ranald Macdonald, a tacksman or farmer of Milton in the island of South Uist (Hebrides), she would come to be immortalized in Jacobite ballads and legends.

John Witherspoon

1723 – 1794

Scottish-American Presbyterian Minister and founding father of the United Statesof America – He embraced the conceptsof Scottish common sense realism, while president of the now Princeton University. He was influential in the development of the United States’ national character and was one of the Scottish signatories to the Declaration of Independence of 1776.

Graham Bell

1847 – 1922

Scottish-born American inventor, scientist, and engineer is credited with inventing and patenting the first practical telephone. He also founded the American Telephone and Telegraph Company in 1885. Bell considered his invention an intrusion on his real work as a scientist and refused to have a telephone in his study.

Robert Adam

1728 – 1792

A Scottish neoclassical architect, interior designer and furniture designer who developed a distinctive and highly individual style. It was applied to all elements of interior decoration, from ceilings, walls and floors to furniture, silver and ceramics. The ‘Adam Style’, as it became known, was enormously popular and had a lasting influence on British architecture and interior design.

Adam Smith

1723 – 1790

Scottish Economist, Adam was a Scottish philosopher and economist who is best known as the author of Wealth Of Nations (1776), one of the most influential books ever written. He is widely cited as the father of modern economics.

David Hume

1711 – 1776

David Hume was an influential historian, economist and writer, one of the most influential figures to come out of the Scottish Enlightenment. Hume was invested in the natural sciences, the necessity of government, and empirical observation.

Queen of Scots

1542 – 1587

Also known as Mary Stuart, was seen as the rightful queen of Scotland and was the legitimate granddaughter of Henry VIII’s sister, Margaret Tudor. Her life would be marked by a war of wits against her own cousin, Queen Elizabeth I, and a painful series of betrayals as her own family plotted against her and her death came through the treachery of her own son.

Allan Ramsay

1713 – 1784

Scottish-born painter, one of the foremost 18th century British portraitists. His portraits of women had the influence of French Rococo portraiture with the lightness and unpretentious elegance clearly seen in his works. He was appointed painter to George 111 in 1767.