Hotel group invests in the North Coast 500

Exterior of the Tongue Hotel

Highland Coast Hotels has officially reopened both the Plockton Inn and The Tongue Hotel, following a £1.8 million makeover.

The extensive four-month refurbishment at both properties has given them a ‘contemporary new look’ inspired by their locations in areas of outstanding natural beauty, and they are once again welcoming overnight guests and diners.

Part of the world-famous North Coast 500 tourist route, Tongue enjoys views over the Kyle of Tongue, Ben Loyal and Ben Hope, while the village of Plockton is known as ‘The Jewel of the Highlands’, sitting on a sheltered bay overlooking Loch Carron.

The Tongue Hotel, which is a former 19th century sporting lodge, now offers 19 individually-styled guest rooms and a newly refurbished restaurant and bar, all overseen by General Manager, Marcel Wassen.

Interior bedroom of the Tongue hotel


Its new ‘Deluxe Feature’ bedroom has a decadent feel, complete with free-standing roll top bath, rich soft furnishings, and an open fireplace.

The Tongue Hotel’s new 40-cover destination restaurant ‘Varrich’, takes inspiration from the remains of Castle Varrich on the headland opposite. Head Chef, Sumit Dhar, is leading a team of seven to offer seasonal menus showcasing the best local producers and suppliers from across the North Highlands.

Exterior of the plockton hotel


Highland Coast Hotels has appointed Paul Arcarias as the new General Manager of Plockton Inn, which has been reduced from 14 rooms to 12 to allow for larger en-suite bathrooms for selected rooms.

The makeover of Plockton Inn also includes ‘Sorley’s House’ in the building opposite, which takes its name from the famous Scottish poet, Sorley MacLean, who lived on the site for a number of years.

The newly refurbished 80-cover Plockton Inn, Restaurant and Bar has retained the existing period features, whilst taking design inspiration from its location, quality of light and fishing boats on the shores of Loch Carron.

Interior of the plockton inn bar


Head Chef, Steven New, and Portfolio Head Chef, Eric Lionnet, are leading a team of eight to offer seasonal menus brimming with local produce, including wonderfully fresh Langoustines from Loch Carron known locally as Plockton Prawns. The bar menu will showcase local ales from Plockton and whisky from Torabhaig, Raasay and Talisker Distilleries.

The Plockton Inn also has a garden between Sorley’s House and the bay where a rapid service operation, The Outside Inn, will offer a wide selection of delicious seafood and other locally sourced delicacies.

Highland Coast Hotels has the stated aim of bringing innovative, sustainable and community-led hospitality to the coastlines of the North Highlands, strengthening and enhancing the hotels it owns, as well as boosting regional growth.

David Whiteford stands outside the royal marine hotel

Chairman David Whiteford said: “We’re extremely proud to have reached this significant milestone in the development of Highland Coast Hotels.

“We’ve reopened the doors to The Tongue Hotel and Plockton Inn, unveiling our contemporary makeover for these two iconic and historic hotels. As with each of our six venues across the North Highlands, our focus continues to be on creating environmentally-friendly hotels and supporting local communities, suppliers, producers, designers and artists.

“Guests can look forward to our famous Highland welcome in areas of outstanding natural beauty, as well as sampling the best local, seasonal food and drink.”

The redevelopment of Tongue Hotel and Plockton Inn has been supported by Highlands & Islands Enterprise.

Since 2021, Highland Coast Hotels has acquired another four of the region’s landmark hotels, including the award-winning Kylesku Hotel, overlooking Loch Gleann Dubh in the far West Highlands; Newton Lodge overlooking Loch Glencoul; the Royal Golf Hotel in Dornoch; and the Royal Marine Hotel in Brora.