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Macdonald Aviemore Highland Hotel

4.0 out of 5.0

Recent guest reviews

When I first visited this hotel back in November 2016 it was really good but unfortunately not so good now. The service is not that great, customer service skills aren't that great and breakfast is a hit or a miss. Beer on tap is lifeless. The breakfasts are a hit or a miss. The bedrooms are basic with the bathrooms pretty small. You are lucky if you get a walk in shower as it makes all the difference and beds are very comfortable. I don't think it is worth what it costs for a night

This hotel is one of three located within a holiday resort where there are plenty of activities to suit various types of people and for ages ranging from the young to the not-so-young. The hotel has courteous staffs. Booking for the restaurant is highly recommended, especially during busy hours and days. There are plenty of parking spaces within the resort. There is free use of the pool and gym facilities for guests. It is about a ten minute walk from the town centre. However, it is slightly overpriced.

Was at the hotel last week, paid well over £500 for Monday-Friday, the hotel is well over priced , corridors walls all damaged, place looks it's not been cleaned properly in years. Rooms look about 40 years old, Never again....

Expectations (based on the website): - Promise of 3h free childcare a day - Nice location - Kids club/soft play - Pool - Spa - 4 restaurants - Cafés - Outside playground - Quiet, healthy environment Reality: - You get 3h childcare only on SCOTTISH holidays only (we obviously went during English half term…), however as there were 7 kids in our party and it was a UK bank holiday one of those days, we got one session! If we had arrived a day later, it wouldn’t of happened. You can still use he club but have to have an adult looking after the kids yourself. I have to say that the kids were more disappointed not to have time of from us, then we were… - If you don’t book dinner with the hotel then the options without driving outside Aviemore are quite limited to sandwiches/pub grub & often wait of a table for 30+minutes (PS we only found 3 restaurants in the resort, out of which one was closed every night, one served a bit too unhealthy food for our liking (American diner style), so we were left with one option. It was very nice though and it was worth having the dinner package) - Soft play and pool are open to all members of MacDonalds, so it got quite busy as soon as the school day finished - Poolside & changing rooms were quite dirty - Spa didn’t have any availability for the 2w after our departure – I didn’t check but I think it wasn’t even open rather than being fully booked - Rooms were ok, maybe a bit tired – drains were blocked - The room cards didn’t usually work, so there was a lot of back-and-forth between the door and reception. - Smoking is allowed at the entrance of a hotel (at least at Aviemore). If you have a room above the entrance or you walk in and out of the building…well, it was rather unpleasant (mildly put) - The Aviemore plays loud pop music at their entrance and according to the receptionist it is because they are a 24h operating hotel and this was apparently completely normal. Well, apart from families with kids and retired people, I didn’t see many potential partygoers in the premises, so I am not sure for whom this music was played to. It annoyed us to the max as we could not keep the windows open at night. At our last night the music was turned off at 11pm after more than one family complained. - At the checkout we were asked for £4 for card payment fees (although we had booked and paid the full requested amount via MacDonalds website). I know it’s not an amount worth mentioning but I just find it bizarre. I would still go back there though, however I would make sure we go during Scottish holidays, that all restaurants are open and ask for a room that would not be directly above the entrance. And hope that by then smoking will be in a dedicated area that is easy to avoid for the non-smokers!

I wanted a short break with my teenage son who has disabilities that wasn't too far from home and had lots of activities to do if he wanted to do them. This hotel and resort had a lot of potential. Overall the big things were good. The food was very good including dinner, room service and breakfast. The room was comfortable and spacious, I was just very puzzled about the small things which could have really made the break so much nicer. So the not so good things... Checkin- arrived at2.30 which was earlier than 4 checkin. Not offered to keep my bags, so had to drag back to the car, not told if room ready soon, just expected to come back at 4. Not suggested booking a dinner reservation. Room- told that beds would be separated when booked on phone, they weren't. Son upset and I rearranged the room. No communication of my needs. Information- no one seemed to no anything more than their own job. Given wrong times for breakfast so almost missed it, couldn't really offer appropriate activities for my son, no information about facilities in room, activities in Aviemore, again just left to figure it out. Wake up call- on morning of check out ther was a lot of knocking of doors, which I thought guests were coming in and out of rooms. No it was housekeeping knocking on doors to see if we were checking out. At 9 they knocked on mine waking my son even though I had 2 hours to check out. Very mixed experience,

We visit Aviemore every year for at least a week, sometimes longer, as a family party of up to 16 people, including children, residing in the River Druie area. We have previously visited Macdonalds Resort to take the children swimming during our holiday, however were appalled to find that this year there was no entry unless we paid individual prices of £30 for each adult, and £20 for each child which would have meant a payment of £100 for a family of 4 ! This apparently enabled access to the facilities for a week, however we wished only a day entry, which we had received during previous visits, at a cost of approximately £40 for the family We queried this, however were informed that £30 per adult and £20 per child was the only option to gain entry to the swimming pool Not only were the prices ridiculous, and sheer extortion, but the staff were unfriendly and disinterested. Our family party were absolutely appalled, and as a result would not use any of the other facilities within the Macdonald resort, whereas in previous years we had accessed shopping, cinema, restaurants, etc How short-sighted and lacking in business sense in terms of loss of clientele I hope that other visitors to Aviemore shun this type of greed and exclusion

Nice clean, comfortable room but nothing special, Very quiet in the resort for the time of year, early July, 5 mins walk from main street. On DBB basis, breakfast was excellent, fine dining was offered for dinner, and although it was tasty, choices were limited for some of our party, and would be a rather expensive if on a budget. Drinks were very over priced so we chose to have a drink at the hotel on the main street instead. Difficult to get a dinner booking between 7-830pm due to large coach parties arriving for their meal during these times, not enough staff ? Don't think we will make a return visit to this hotel.

Very confusing to know exactly where you are staying. The resort comprises the original 4 1970's hotels which have been "re-vamped", some obviously more than others. How they were awarded 4 stars is a mystery. We ended up in the Aviemore Hotel which used to be the "Freedom Inn". It looks more like a hostel and inside it didn't get any better. They should just knock it down and start again. Although the bedroom was very clean and confortable (looked as if it had been recently upgraded), the public areas are really shabby and there is no lounge, only a burger bar which looked equally uninviting. When we complained, we were told that this hotel specialised in family groups and the top hotel was the Highland Hotel (formerly the Post House). All the hotels seem to cater for a large number of coach parties, and I'm ashamed to say, many visitors from abroad who would be expecting a considerably higher standard. I happened to see a group of German guests leaving - what must they have thought of a breakfast with no fresh bread - only toast was on offer and when I asked for rolls, they said they had none. We had a half board arrangement and were able to eat in any of the three restaurants. The food in the Italian restaurant (situated in the Morlich Hotel - formerly the Badenoch) and in the Highland Hotel was actually very good although there were not many folk around so there was a distinct lack of atmosphere. The entire resort was very quiet, surprisingly for the end of June. The only swimming pool is in the Activity Centre but they do not have any specified time for adults.

This hotel is in the highlands and was in a great quiet place. The bed was amazing and the so were the towels and toiletries. But the bathroom was super tiny. The halls seem very dated and the whole resort and most of the town seemed to close up at 5 or 6. This was very unfortunate as we were part of a sizable tour group who would have loved to shop but nothing was open. The restaurant was okay. But there were many places to go for a nice long walk.

I was with a group and my room was terrible. They have supposedly refurbished the hotel but they certainly missed this room, 2152. The carpet in the hallway was very frayed, the curtain would not close properly, the safe would not work and worst of all was the bathroom. It was small and poorly configured so that when you entered if you wanted to use the toilet you had to squeeze behind the door. The inside of the bathroom door was covered in dirty fingerprints. The shower tile grouting was FULL of black mold. The furniture was dated, not antique, just old. There were candy wrappers under my dresser and bedside table. The staff were quite unfriendly and acted like our group was an imposition to them.

Macdonald Aviemore Resort Aviemore Scotland

Hotel highlights

  • Free WiFi in rooms and public areas
  • Free parking
  • Onsite dining
  • Spa

Located within a leisurely stroll of Cairngorm Brewery, Macdonald Aviemore Highland Hotel is within a few miles (5 km) of Rothiemurchus Estate Visitor Centre. This 151-room, 4-star hotel welcomes guests with 5 restaurants, a full-service spa, and an indoor pool. It's in a national park and also near Speyside Wildlife and Craigellachie National Nature Reserve.


Enjoy dining at Giovannis, one of 5 onsite restaurants. Savor a meal from the comfort of your room with 24-hour room service, or get a quick energy boost at the coffee shop/café.


Macdonald Aviemore Highland Hotel's 151 rooms provide ironing boards. Guests can enjoy satellite TV and stay connected with free WiFi. Hair dryers are also included.

Property features

Macdonald Aviemore Highland Hotel features a full-service spa, an indoor pool, and a children's pool. You can put free parking to good use if you drive. Multilingual staff at the front desk are standing by 24/7 to help with dry cleaning/laundry, tours or tickets, and luggage storage. Other amenities at this ski hotel include a health club, a sauna, and free WiFi in public areas.

Room options

Classic Twin Room

Twin 2 | Sleeps 2

Executive Double Room (King)

King 1 | Sleeps 2

Classic Double Room Single Use

Full 1 | Sleeps 1

Reviews from Trip Advisor

Trip Advisor aggregated rating

59% of guests recommend this hotel

Total of 772 reviews