A commitment to sustainability, five-star accommodation and the natural beauty of the Isle of Harris sees Blue Reef Cottages providing an authentic and unique Hebridean visitor experience.
Blue Reef Cottages’ two turf-roofed luxury self-catering properties are owner-managed by Neil and Rhoda Campbell and their family. The cottages have brought sustainable luxury holiday accommodation to the beautiful Isle of Harris.
The entire Isle of Harris is designated a National Scenic Area and from day one, the family has been quick to recognise the world-class natural assets on their doorstep. Their website provides extensive information on the diverse wildlife which guests can look out for throughout their break.
As well as basking sharks, whales, dolphins and seals, Harris is home to otters, golden eagles and red deer. The abundance of species is married with the island’s beaches, villages and contrasting landscapes to create a haven for visitors. Coupled with the Islands on the Edge, Hebridean Wildlife Programme and related VisitScotland promotions, Blue Reef was ideally placed to benefit from increased interest in Harris’ wildlife tourism.
Matching stunning scenery with first-class customer experience is a priority for Neil and Rhoda,and it’s a commitment that begins before guests even take a step on the island. An availability calendar and access to special offers are included on their website and their online booking system has streamlined the booking process.
The couple place great importance on sustainability and on encouraging guests to use local suppliers. An award-winning environmental commitment including the use of wind power onsite and assorted home grown green produce is a further attraction to visitors. As the family home is located onsite, close to the cottages, on arrival a personal welcome awaits, in English or, to the delight if visitors, Gaelic. Visitors can rely on Neil and Rhoda for tips, recommendations and first-hand local knowledge,as well as written information booklets available in the cottages, the family are happy to direct guests to the best restaurants and cafes, walking routes and cycling trails as well as sourcing the best local produce including scallops, langoustines and lobster.
Inside the cottages, observation areas provide breathtaking sea views while luxury features such as heated stone floors, a sauna and Jacuzzi go a long way to enhancing the unique customer experience.
Social media is playing an increasingly important role for the business – particularly in maintaining customer contact and nurturing interest between visits. As well as collaborating with fellow accommodation providers, Blue Reef is continuing to forge links with attractions including galleries, local guided walks and wildlife tours. Visitors looking to trace their ancestral roots on the island are offered advice and help by the local genealogy centre, which has a great mutual relationship with Neil and Rhoda.
Rhoda says; “We have always been conscious of our role in promoting not only Blue Reef, but also Harris, the Outer Hebrides and Scotland as a whole.
“By working with other tourism providers, acting on feedback and embracing continuous improvement we can ensure our visitors enjoy unique, authentic and unforgettable experiences. We’re proud of our island, passionate about our offering and delighted to help visitors celebrate our natural and cultural assets.”
For tips and advice on how to make the most of Scotland’s natural wildlife download Tourism Intelligence Scotland’s Wildlife Guide.