TOAST Magazine

Kyle House | Danish Minimalism in the Scottish Highlands

TRAVEL & PLACE

The last gift in our Beneath the Tree prize draw is a stay at Kyle House. In the dizzying aftermath of Christmas festivities this secluded hideaway is an enviable winter escape…

The silhouettes of blue-grey mountains dominate the land, punctuated by silvery lochs and dense thickets of deep green woodland. Thin ribbons of road are visible now and again but for the most part there is no trace of man. For these are the Scottish Highlands, the UK’s last true wilderness.

Nestled on the brow of a hill, on the Kinloch Estate in Sutherland, is Kyle House. The large plate windows in the traditional stone frontage quietly hint at the modern design within. But it is only on entering that the breadth of the renovation is revealed.

Transformed by Anne Storm Holch Povlsen and interior designer Ruth Kramer, the house – a former smokery – is a lesson in pared-back, Danish simplicity. Locally mined, Caithness stone sits alongside soft grey concrete and honeyed Danish oak, the edges softened by supple leathers and cossetting shearlings.

The landscape sings through every room and the uninterrupted views along the length of the Kyle of Tongue – a shallow sea loch from which the house takes its name – are wild and changing.

There is a strong sense of slow living, of calm – a world away from the frenetic pace of the city. And the space, with its deep bathtub and log fire, invites one to rest and unwind.

Kyle House, together with other farmhouses, hotels and lodges, is part of an ambitious 200-year project called Wildland. The project aims to protect and restore the landscape of multiple highland estates through a journey of re-wilding. Essentially, this involves letting nature run its course – with minimal interference – in the hope that in centuries from now, the land will be abundant in new species of tree, gorse, heather and even new wildlife.

The team at Wildland hope that through providing guests with a chance to stay in these remote locations they will not only provide jobs for local communities but help people to reconnect with the landscape – its vastness and its beauty.

The prize draw to win a stay at Kyle House opens on Thursday 13th at midday and ends 20th December. 


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