'Some opportunities only come once, seize them' The Holstee Manifesto
With our two girls all grown up and our first grandchild en route, we decided in October 2015, rather impulsively, to search Google for campsites for sale. Up came ‘Kylesku Lodges’ and a stormy visit to the site a month later. We were blown away by the view and saw an opportunity to update the lodges with our eye for creativity and design. The pull of the ‘friendliest hotel in Scotland’ only a short walk away, and the chance to build a home and live in the wild weather of Sutherland, was just too intriguing to walk away. So we sold our flat and moved up from Edinburgh in July 2016, where Mike worked as a joiner and I was studying Textile Design at Glasgow School of Art.
As we approach our fifth season, we feel very fortunate to have met so many colourful and enthusiastic guests and been welcomed into the local community, with gifts of venison, lobster, gin and laughter. We've welcomed families, single travellers, groups of friends, celebrated artists, actors, film crews, groups of divers, photographers, walkers and wedding parties! There have been times where we have missed our family so much it hurts, but when they visit we climb hills, discover hidden waterfalls, walk along empty beaches and go out on our boat (Wee Joan) looking for seals and otters.
At heart we are problem solvers, we love the shape of the lodges but feel they would fit into the landscape better if clad with Scottish Larch, so this winter we are looking to complete this task. We also been changing the flooring (from carpets to wooden floors in the open plan living area) as well as installing new improved heating in the bedrooms and living spaces.
Another exciting addition is the opening of a reception/shop in April 2021. Since leaving Art School she was awarded a grant from Highlands & Islands Enterprise to develop her knitted blankets, cushions and scarves for use in the lodges. She has also designed a tea towel inspired by the surrounding landscape of Kylesku. We have a limited amount, costing £15 each, with £1 of each sale being donated to Age Concern (P+P included) Made in the UK from 100% organic cotton available through her website, Cove.
We want to share this amazing place with you and we hope you will come with your family, your friends or just yourself. Come and explore, breathe the freshest of air, switch off your phone and enjoy all the wildlife, views, hidden treasures and fabulous food. See you soon, Cath and Mike and the wandering sheep and stags (our live in neighbours)!