Thursday, 29 March 2018

Easter Opening Times


Please note our office will be closed on the following days for the Easter break:

Friday 30th March
Saturday 31st March
Sunday 1st April
Monday 2nd April

We will re-open at 9.00am on Tuesday 3rd April.

We would like to wish you all a very Happy Easter.


Thursday, 22 March 2018

Cruise Focus - Classical Inspiration


The beauty of Scotland’s Highlands and Islands has inspired numerous artists, composers and musicians, most famously the dramatic cathedral-like Fingal’s Cave on Staffa, immortalised by Mendelssohn and J M Turner to name but two. This cruise uncovers the talent of local musicians and artists who have also been stimulated by the unique atmosphere of the environs in which they live.


The Crinan Hotel is a renowned gallery venue where contemporary artists Frances Macdonald and her son Ross Ryan regularly exhibit. Frances is unrivalled in her ability to capture the true character and drama of the landscapes and coastline in Argyll and the Western Isles. From her studio and the hotel overlooking the Corryvreckan, there are inspirational views across the water to the north end of Jura, to Scarba, the mountains of Mull and the great expanse of the North Atlantic. Wonderfully in touch with her subject matter, Frances is immersed in her surroundings and can convey their every nuance to the viewer.

Ross Ryan grew up in the small fishing village of Crinan and graduated from Gray’s School of Art in Aberdeen. When he is not travelling the globe or sailing, Ross works from his print studio in the Old Boathouse at the Crinan Ferry in changing mediums; fully equipped for Collograph, Monoprinting, Etching and Woodcut prints, this is where Ross creates his print series and develops new projects.

The Resipole Studio is an award-winning fine art gallery and unique exhibition space which hosts an exciting annual programme of exhibitions and workshops of Scottish contemporary art that is both emerging and established. The gallery was launched in 2004 by Andrew Sinclair. An arts graduate himself, Andrew recognised the need for a professional gallery space and studio facilities to enable resident and visiting artists to access high quality resources in a truly inspirational Highland setting.

Since its launch, Resipole Studio continues to present work by artists of many disciplines, with Scotland as their key focus. With many award-winning artists on its roster, the gallery is regarded as one of Scotland’s leading contemporary art spaces. 

Every July the beautiful Hebridean island of Islay is home to Cantilena’s professional musicians and students of the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland who bring together their unique sound of chamber music to residents and visitors, with many of the concerts being held in the famous Islay Malt Whisky distilleries. To this romantic island, Cantilena brings wonderful music from the dazzling virtuosity of Vivaldi and Bach, through the romantic sophistication of Beethoven and Schubert, right up to the challenges of modern composers.


The professional musicians involved in the Cantilena Festival are driven by a powerful desire to share their passionate love of music-making with an emerging generation of young musicians.

The German composer Mendelssohn visited Scotland in 1829 when he was 20 years old. It was the natural beauty of Scotland and its rich history of fact and fable that delighted the young composer and inspired the Scottish Symphony, including the Hebrides Overture and Fingal’s Cave.

Some 150 years later the remarkable violinist Leonard Friedman, based in Edinburgh, conceived a musical pilgrimage in commemoration of Mendelssohn’s visit. With the first such event in 1988, Leonard inaugurated a week of music-making, concentrating on string chamber music, where the participants were a blend of established professionals and students at which audiences were welcome at no cost.

Today, the Mendelssohn on Mull Festival has retained its shape, despite the changing nature of artistic direction, musical mentoring and student participation. The venues in which the concerts are held are extraordinary, including the rugged splendour of Duart Castle, which helps to explain why these concerts have built a national following.

Our Classical cruise also takes us to Islay House Square, the exotic woodland gardens of Colonsay House, the sacred iconic Iona Abbey, the awe-inspiring Fingal’s Cave and the ancient Duart Castle. Experience all of this, interspersed with musical interludes and breathtaking scenery, all from the luxury of our floating country house hotel, Hebridean Princess.

>> Classical Inspiration departs from Oban on 3rd July 2018 for seven nights.

Prices from £3,885 per person based on 2 people sharing an inside double/twin cabin.

Tuesday, 13 March 2018

New season - New cabins

During this winter refit period, we have continued with our programme of cabin refurbishment. Once again we have worked closely with interior designers Sally and Lynsey from John Dick and Sons to transform 12 guest cabins on board. 

Continuing with the subtle Scottish feel created in the public areas and previously refurbished cabins, locally manufactured fabrics have been used including plaid and Harris Tweed. Complementary colours and textures give each cabin its own individual identity and luxurious fabrics give a comfortable yet contemporary ambience.

Isle of Bute
The Isle of Arran suite now boasts wallpaper and fabric featuring vintage parchment maps, a world globe inset in the coffee table and an elegant sage green and sand colour scheme.


Isle of Arran day room
In addition, a total of 10 guest cabins have been fitted with brand new bathrooms using quality sanitary ware and brass fittings.



A further transformation you will notice is the on board shop. During the winter new stock has been sourced from local suppliers and is now attractively displayed in our wee shop.



We have even had a bespoke range of bow ties and cufflinks created by the Edinburgh Bow Tie Company from our very own Hebridean tartan, as well as an exclusive range of mens engraved leather wallets, supplied locally by Leather Guild.

To complement this for the ladies we had Lady Crow tartan silk scarves with beautiful pewter brooches, Sheila Fleet Jewellery, Leather Guild Tweed and leather handbags and purses plus a fine selection of Scottish toiletries and confectionery.

We are sure you will be tempted by the new array of mementos and souvenirs to take home for yourself or your loved ones.

The return of the Cruise Log

As our 30th season of Hebridean Princess cruises has just begun you can be kept abreast of what is happening on board by logging onto our website and reading our online cruise logs which are updated regularly:

>> Cruise Logs

We hope you will join us on a virtual voyage of relaxation and discovery.





Friday, 9 February 2018

Hebridean Road Show

Over the coming weeks Hebridean will be out and about attending various events.  Members of the Hebridean shore-based team will be on hand to showcase both Hebridean Princess and our European River Cruise Programme. 
 
We'd love to see you - please come along and we'll be pleased to answer any questions you may have.
 
London Cruise Show
Olympia London, 17th - 18th February 2018
The Cruise Show returns to the Olympia, London on the 17th and 18th February and will celebrate the range of sights, sounds and wonders available to those willing to discover the world by ship!

The world has never been more accessible for those with the spirit of adventure. Packed full of information and inspiration, Cruise Show will bring together the best specialist operators and holiday providers all under one roof. In one weekend we cover everything from all-inclusive luxury getaways to small-ship cruises destined for remote locations, as well as your chance to meet like-minded travellers on organised group tours – whether you’re travelling with partner, family or friends!

As well as meeting with an excellent range of travel companies and taking advantage of their exclusive show-only offers, visitors are also invited to enjoy the show’s interactive features. Hear first-hand experience from celebrity speakers, explorers, journalists and tour operators in a choice of 3 theatres, bursting with travel ideas and practical advice that’s bound to inspire.

>> CLICK HERE FOR FREE TICKETS USING CODE HEBRIDEAN2018
 
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Spa Travel
 
Boston Spa, 20th February 2018
 
 

Learn about the latest itineraries and developments on board Hebridean Princess and our exciting European river cruises on board Royal Crown.

Places are limited and demand expected to be high, so please contact our reservations team on 01756 704 704 or by email to reservations@hebridean.co.uk by Friday, 16th February to confirm your attendance.
 
 
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Linlithgow Travel, Cruise Show
 
Linlithgow, 28th March 2018
 
 
Learn about the latest itineraries and developments on board Hebridean Princess and our exciting European river cruises on board Royal Crown as well as meeting other cruise lines.

Places are limited and demand expected to be high, so please contact our reservations team on 01756 704 704 or by email to reservations@hebridean.co.uk by Wednesday, 14th March to confirm your attendance.
 
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Friday, 26 January 2018

Come and meet us at London Cruise Shows

Next month we will be attending some of the UK’s biggest cruise and travel shows.

Come along and meet our experienced team and have your questions answered face to face – we’d love to see you…

Destinations: The Holiday and Travel Show 

Olympia London, 1st - 4th February 2018


Come face to face with your next holiday or travel experience at the UK's biggest travel show. Packed with hundreds of leading and independent tour operators, over 75 tourist boards from across the globe, cultural entertainment, world flavours, travel celebrities and more, Destinations: The Holiday & Travel Show is the UK's largest and longest-running travel event. Taking place at Olympia London, 1 - 4 February 2018, the Destinations Holiday and Travel Show is the essential event to indulge your passion for travelling.

With the largest choice of exhibitors anywhere in the UK and a huge variety of holiday and travel options on offer, the Destinations Show inspires you to discover new destinations and adventures from our expert exhibitors. 

Plus, discover the Stanfords Travel Writers Festival, a line-up of incredible talks, presentations and panel sessions from a host of leading travel writers and authors, whilst exotic cultures are brought to life through dance, performance and free food and drink tastings across four Experience The World stages.

Meet the Experts Theatres also provide over 50 hours of free travel advice from destination specialists. Covering an array of journeys to every continent, get inspired to discover and learn about exciting destinations across the globe.

Wherever your next journey leads, make sure it begins at the Destinations The Holiday and Travel Show, Olympia London.

>> CLICK HERE FOR FREE TICKETS  USING CODE MSC85

London Cruise Show

Olympia London, 17th - 18th February 2018

The Cruise Show returns to the Olympia, London on the 17th and 18th February and will celebrate the range of sights, sounds and wonders available to those willing to discover the world by ship!

The world has never been more accessible for those with the spirit of adventure. Packed full of information and inspiration, Cruise Show will bring together the best specialist operators and holiday providers all under one roof. In one weekend we cover everything from all-inclusive luxury getaways to small-ship cruises destined for remote locations, as well as your chance to meet like-minded travellers on organised group tours – whether you’re travelling with partner, family or friends!

As well as meeting with an excellent range of travel companies and taking advantage of their exclusive show-only offers, visitors are also invited to enjoy the show’s interactive features. Hear first-hand experience from celebrity speakers, explorers, journalists and tour operators in a choice of 3 theatres, bursting with travel ideas and practical advice that’s bound to inspire.

>> CLICK HERE FOR FREE TICKETS USING CODE HEBRIDEAN2018

Tuesday, 16 January 2018

Scotland's Magical West Coast by Richard A Baines of Logan Botanic Gardens

Richard Baines with Gardener's World presenter Carol Klein.
There are few horticultural spectacles that can compete with the beauty and splendour of gardens along the West Coast of Scotland in early Summer. 

Gardens along the western seaboard are famous for their impressive displays of Himalayan plants such as Rhododendrons, Magnolias, Blue Poppies and Camellias and May will be the ideal period for viewing them at their very best. 

Most of the gardens are located very close to the coast and have idyllic views across the western seaboard. This has the advantage of not being hit by late frosts and also having an earlier growing season than gardens inland.

Inverewe in Wester Ross has a wonderful collection of tender Rhododendrons such as Rhododendron Edgeworthii and some magnificent Asiatic Magnolias such as Magnolia Wilsonii with its pure white petals and clusters of red stamens. The view from the walled garden across Loch Ewe is to die for!

Rhododendron
Spring fragrance is an integral part of visiting Attadale Gardens which have numerous specimens of the Yellow Azalea, Rhododendron Luteum. It also has an oriental garden from Japan plus a sunken fern garden.

Dundonnell Estate Garden hosts a fine collection of Camellias, Magnolias and Rhododendrons and has an impressive laburnum walk in this ancient walled garden.  Exciting planting in new borders provides all year colour centred around one of the oldest yew trees in Scotland.

Durnamuck Garden situated on the edge of Loch Broom with stunning views is a real plantsman’s garden. With a rich mix of herbaceous borders, trees and shrubs, Mediterranean plants and plants originating from South Africa one will observe plants that are seldom seen in the U.K.

Dunvegan Castle and Gardens has over five acres of formal gardens which will be at their prime in mid - May. Included in the garden is a water garden with its ornate bridges and islands complemented by its rich plant collection. The castle’s former vegetable garden is now elegantly landscaped and houses a diverse range of plants and features such as a glasshouse, garden museum, pond and larch pergola. A lot of restoration work has been carried out in the last thirty years to restore the garden.

Lip na Cloiche Garden is beautifully situated close to the shoreline on the Isle of Mull, and has stunning views of Loch Tuath and the Isle of Ulva. For the avant collector you will be delighted to hear that the garden has an unusual range of plants for sale!

One of Scotland’s national treasures are its castles. Glengorm Castle is an impressive 19th century country house commanding fine views across the surrounding landscapes.

Many of the gardens that we will visit have developed as a result of personal passion for plants and hard work and Ard Daraich Garden is no exception. here a rock garden has been created on a granite hillside creating small pockets in the thin peat layer for planting.

Scottish gardens host some of the finest displays of Himalayan Blue Poppies on the planet and this will be the ideal time of year to view them at Ardtornish Estate Gardens. Why not take this opportunity to view some of Scotland’s finest gardens in the comfort and homeliness of this fabulous cruise ship.

Himalayan Blue Poppies
Richard Baines will accompany our Secret Gardens of the Western Seaboard cruise commencing 15th May 2018 for 7 nights.