Wednesday, 18 December 2013

Mar Lodge

Mar lodge must be  the grandest hunting lodge in the Scottish Highlands. It is the principal building on the Mar Lodge Estate in Aberdeenshire. It was built in 1895 to replace an earlier building, by Alexander Duff, 6th Earl and later,1st Duke of Fife. Located four miles west of Braemar it is accessed from the Lin of Dee across the Victoria Bridge.

There have been three buildings called Mar Lodge. The first near the present lodge was built in the 18th Century by William Duff, Lord Braco, a moneylender who bought his Irish titles, a man who had acquired the estate in the 1730's. This building was so badly damaged by the 'Muckle Spate' (great flood) of 1829 that it had to be demolished. The second lodge  built at the top of the Mar Lodge Brae was a typically Victorian confection known colloquially as Corriemulzie Cottage. This lodge was destroyed by a fire in 1894.

The hall

 The third Mar Lodge was built between 1895 and 1898 for Alexander Duff, 1st Duke of Fife and his wife, Princess Louise, Princess Royal and Duchess of Fife. The foundation stone was laid by the princess's grandmother, Queen Victoria on 15th October 1895.The architect was Alexander Marshall Mackenzie (1848-1933) who designed the building in the neo-Elizabethan style in the accordance with the wishes of the Duchess. While many of the rooms are wood paneled and covered with hunting trophies, the Duchess's apartments are decorated in the neo-classical style.

Drawing Room

Billiard Room

Dining Room

Morning Room

Hunting trophies

In the 20th Century the Fife's disposed of the house and the estate which were both eventually purchased with National Lottery Heritage money by the National Trust who manage the lodge as a wedding venue.