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Attractive and well-presented café situated in the distillery village of Dalwhinnie set amongst some of the most stunning scenery in the Scottish Highlands.
Village centre trading location within the popular Cairngorm National Park in a highly desirable picturesque setting close to the railway station.
Non-trading entity due to lease ending but with excellent potential to trade profitably either on a seasonal basis or year-round.
Easy-to-operate café / bar to seat around 48 customers with high quality customer and service areas plus external seating affording excellent views of the surrounding hills.
Comfortable and separate 4-bedroom bunkhouse / owner’s accommodation plus spacious grounds with decking area and parking for c24 cars.
Dalwhinnie is situated in the Cairngorm National Park, close to the towns of Newtonmore, Kingussie and Aviemore to the north and Pitlochry to the south; all have extensive facilities, shops hotels, guest houses etc. There are excellent communication and commerce links, with the A9 arterial road from Perth to the south and Inverness to the north and onwards into the Highlands. Dalwhinnie benefits from a mainline railway station being only a 200-metre walk; Inverness Airport is easily accessible for those travelling by air, all adding to the influx of visitors. Dalwhinnie enjoys a very central location, perfect as a base from which guests can explore the many activities and attractions of the Highlands, including the Cairngorm National Park, the Monadhliath Mountains, Loch Ness and the Nevis Range; the latter being an easy day trip. Hill walking, cycling and water sports are popular in spring, summer and autumn, while winter offers wide-ranging snow sports. Other outdoor pursuits such as bird watching and fishing also draw many visitors to the area who take advantage of the abundance of wildlife across the hills and in the Spey Valley. For the dedicated golfer, Pitlochry, Boat of Garten, Newtonmore and Kingussie have excellent courses with many others within an easy drive. Castles, gardens and the local Folk Museum offer guests’ places of culture and history to visit while Dalwhinnie Distillery welcomes a high number of visitors each year. Schooling and welfare facilities are located in Newtonmore and Kingussie.
The Dalwhinnie Café & Bunkhouse is an attractive business proposition in a prominent roadside location situated in an area of exceptional natural beauty. The café and bunkhouse are located within the village of Dalwhinnie which is renowned for its popular distillery and visitor centre. The property is located centrally to the village which is set just off the A9 (Inverness to Perth route) on the A889 which is a popular cross-country route to Fort William and the West Coast. This situation and the proximity of the distillery generates a high level of passing trade throughout the exceptionally busy main tourist season.
The café and accommodation offer a true easy-to-operate lifestyle business operation with the addition of owner’s accommodation. The properties are single storey units, all being presented in excellent condition; the vendors have invested into presenting the property to the market in walk-in condition. The café has an open-plan area set to tables and chairs plus a wood-burning stove. All furniture and equipment as seen is included within the sale. There is an attractive bar servery and the business currently has a liquor licence for anyone wishing to sell alcoholic beverages. The customer areas are supported by excellent ladies / gents and disabled W.C’s. To the rear of the servery is a well-appointed kitchen and service area. There are also external customer areas on a raised decking platform which could be supplemented by bench seating to the front aspects. An attractive feature of this sale is the bunkhouse / owner’s accommodation adjacent to the café. The bunkhouse has 4 double bedrooms offering excellent letting or family living space, or a combination of both. The accommodation also includes 2 shower rooms and a fitted kitchen and is presented in good condition. The property sits within mature grounds extending to around 0.5 acres being mainly laid to gravel parking for around 24 cars with an enclosed garden area for the bunkhouse / owner’s accommodation. All aspects of this sale have been maintained to a high standard. Of note, the café affords disabled access via a ramp for less able guests and there is a disabled W.C.
Though not precluding other buyers, this business would be ideal for a first-time operator who could stamp their personality and innovation onto a blank canvass business. The property offers a simple trading model which requires little by way of catering experience but would suit a highly motivated couple with a strong desire for self-determination within their work. For those more experienced operators looking for a fuller restaurant style business or to take a step back, this property offers excellent opportunities. There is also scope for a buyer to lease out the business to a third party offering a rental income and longer-term investment.
Currently the business in a non-trading entity. The last operator ceased trading in March 2017 due to the need to relocate because of ill health. Historically, the business generated income from hot and cold food sales, wet sales (both alcoholic and non-alcoholic), and letting out the bunk rooms. The business drew in clientele from the many walkers and outdoor enthusiasts who frequent the area plus the many general tourists who undertake tours of the Highlands. People on cycling or water sports holidays visit the area in significant numbers. The café would also be an excellent stop-off point for those travelling from the central belt of Scotland to the Northern Highlands or from the East Coast to the West Coast. The distillery draws in a high number of tourists to the village who utilise the other facilities in the area. The business has previously traded on a year-round basis but could equally be operated on a seasonal trading pattern from Easter to September, especially where owner / operators wished to trade below the VAT threshold. The present configuration of the café allows for the serving of up to 48 customers at tables and chairs internally with capacity to comfortably seat c20 externally. The business would also lend itself to the sale of tourist memorabilia including landscape photographs, art works, craft works, etc.
The café is a single storey structure of timber and block construction under a partially pitched roof and areas of flat roof with metal profile sheeting. The bunkhouse is also a single storey property with pitched roof and of timber and mixed construction.
From a prominent roadside location, the business offers ample opportunity for signage and provides ease of access. A patio area to the side of the café has room for external seating for about 20 guests. There is dual aspect access with a ramp for disabled guests to the front and steps leading to the patio area. Both entrances reveal an open-plan area which is bright and spacious with a good mix of natural and fixed lighting. Upon entry it is evident that the business is well-presented throughout with modern fixtures and fittings. The main customer area is laid with wood flooring and is set to free-standing tables and chairs plus sofas. In total the restaurant area comfortably seats around 48 covers. There is a servery counter set centrally to customer area and adjacent to the kitchen / preparation areas. An attractive feature of the customer space is the wood-burning stove which is a focal point in the cooler months. To the righthand side of the restaurant are ladies / gents’ and disabled bathrooms which are presented to a high standard. There is a large store room off the customer area. There could be scope to expand the café by introducing a conservatory to the front aspects subject to planning consents.
BUNKHOUSE / OWNER’S ACCOMMODATION
An attractive feature of the sale is the characterful bunkhouse which can be used as an income earning aspect or owner’s accommodation, or a mix of the two, offering a charming and comfortable living space. Set within an enclosed fenced area, the property provides a high level of privacy away from the café. The bunkhouse kitchen has ample wall and floor mounted units with all electric appliances. There are two modern, recently refurbished shower rooms and 4 other rooms which offer flexibility of use. Three rooms have wash-hand basins. Currently, the bedrooms have no furniture and could be used as B&B rooms should new owners prefer. Previously the bunkhouse offered budget accommodation for walkers’ etc. comprising;
Room 1 - 3 sets of bunks to sleep 6
Room 2 - 2 sets of bunks to sleep 4
Room 3 - 1 set of bunk beds to sleep 2
Room 4 - Previously used as owners’ accommodation
The cafe and bunkhouse present a substantial property and offer ample car parking for guest and private needs. Extending to around 0.5 acres, the grounds may offer some development potential subject to consents but undoubtedly provide sound recreational space. The bunkhouse has a private area of ground which is completely fenced in.
Mains electricity, water and drainage. All catering and heating aspects are electrical apart from the wood-burning stove in the cafe. The café is mainly double glazed. The business is fully fire compliant and meets all environmental health requirements. The doors and windows are fitted with security roller-shutters.
The vendors purchased the property approximately 20 years ago and have leased the business over this period. The property is presented to the market as the last tenants had to give up their lease due to ill health. The vendors are now at an age where they are reducing their business interests and offer this charming business to the market either for an owner / occupier to trade successfully or an investment buyer to lease out.
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