CEUD MILE FAILTE - Welcome to Skye Crofters Cottage, Balmeanach, Struan, Isle of Skye. We hope you enjoy looking through our website and discovering what this lovely cottage and island has to offer.
The cottage is built on my croft of 34 acres and belongs to myself and my wife Brenda and my daughter Rebecca. My family have lived in this village for over 100 years. I decided to build this cottage as I wanted other people to experience what we see every day by just looking out the window. This area is of outstanding beauty and surrounded by wildlife and birds and the odd wee 'midgy'!
The house has been built in the style of a traditional Blackhouse using stone sourced from blackhouse ruins around the Bracadale area. The stone walls were built by a local stonemason, who carry’s out the repairs at Dunvegan Castle.
As you walk about the cottage, you'll feel a lovely warmth underfoot. This is due to our unique under floor heating system, which uses a geothermal unit and 320 meters of piping which is connected, using modern technology, to an underground well which my Father found over fifty years ago. The water from this well not only heats the house, but if blessed with a warm summer, it can also be used to cool the cottage down too! Having our own spring water supply meant that we wouldn't have to use the mains water supply and our guests would be able to enjoy drinking fresh Skye water without the use of chemicals. Ideal with a dram of Talisker!
The roof of the cottage is traditional in style but not in materials. I flew all the way to Holland to view this product and decided to go for it due to its lasting properties, but also the cottage is very exposed on the croft hill and I wouldn't want the roof to blow off on a stormy night!
The inside I've tried to make it as luxurious as possible, however I had to enlist help with this as I'm better off outside with bricks, engine oil and grease! I apparently didn't know enough about pots and dishes and how to plump up cushions! So, I decided to leave it to the experts!
As they got on with this, I got on with the final part of the project, building a road up to the house, no mean feat! This was when I wished I'd built the house at the front gate as it was a steep climb and I also had a river to negotiate. Many a night, I was getting called in by the wife at midnight for dinner, still working away in the dark. My apologies to the neighbours, (and of course my wife) for the noise and strange lights coming off the hill. I'm sure they thought there was an alien invasion!
I've tried to think of everything that our guests would enjoy, such as a camera on the hill that will view the bird activity, to an otters den on the shore to view the otters. These are sights, that we who live on the island, see on a regular basis and I'm hoping you will be able to share this with us.
Hope to see you soon,
Alexander & Brenda Ross