Plans to turn Scottish castles into hotels after Spanish example

Leith Hall, mentioned as a good candidate for the plans. Image: Alan Findlay (Wikimedia), CC BY-SA 2.0

Scotland is home to a large amount of castles, many of which are open to the public. The pandemic has had a large impact on tourism, and members of the Scottish National Party see an opportunity to boost the industry by turning these castles into hotels.

This plan is inspired by a chain of monument-hotels in Spain, the Paradores de Turismo de España. The first parador was founded in 1928 and since then almost a hundred historic buildings have been turned into hotels. For the Spanish government, this has been a good way of preserving the buildings and boosting local economies. The National Trust for Scotland predicts a deficit of £28m this year due to the coronavirus and urgently calls for aid so that it can keep on taking care of its monuments.

Hostal dos Reis Católicos. Praza do obradoiro. Santiago de Compostela.jpg
The Parador de Santiago de Compostela in Spain, possibly the oldest hotel in the world.
Image: Angel Torres (Wikimedia), CC BY 2.0

According to the Guardian, the plans would be discussed at the Scottish National Party conference last week, but no specific updates have come out yet. One of Scotland’s many castles, Dunnottar, has reportedly already rejected the idea to become a hotel. Which monuments would become hotels of course depends on their situation, but also on how easy it would be to convert them. Some castles might also want to stay open to the general public instead of guests only. There are many benefits to these plans, but it would be a very large project to carry out; we will have to wait and see where it goes next.

Sourche: The Guardian,

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