Follow VisitScotland

Star quality in Aberdeenshire

Press Release   •   May 30, 2018 10:54 BST

Jo Robinson, VisitScotland Regional Director presenting Bob McAlpine, Chief Executive at Dalriada Luxury Lodges with 5-star Quality Assurance plaque.

An Aberdeenshire self-catering property is celebrating after achieving VisitScotland’s premier Quality Assurance (QA) award.

Dalriada Luxury Lodges has achieved a 5-star grading from the national tourism organisation at its very first grading visit.

With an investment of over £1.5m, and a lot of hard work and effort from the McAlpine family and staff, the 5-star Quality Assurance award is reflective of the commitment and passion shown by this new tourism business.

Dalriada comprises a total of eight lodges, all of which have stunning views across Stonehaven Bay. Each lodge is decorated with a modern interior and includes two bedrooms, with en suite bathrooms, and a comfortable lounge and dining area, accommodating up to four adults.

VisitScotland’s 5-star Quality Assurance award recognises businesses which achieve exceptional levels of excellence. The QA scheme is a benchmark for quality across the tourism industry and operates across accommodation, visitor attractions and the food sectors.

With a big focus on supporting the local community and helping its guests make the most of their time in the area, Dalriada Luxury Lodges has also joined an impressive network of VisitScotland Information Partners (VIP), committed to providing local information to visitors.

Launched in May 2016, the VIP programme harnesses the local knowledge, warmth and enthusiasm of partners across the country to help visitors receive the warmest of welcomes and make the most of their trip to Scotland.

Bob McAlpine, Chief Executive at Dalriada Luxury Lodges, said: “The Dalriada directors and staff are delighted to receive the VisitScotland 5-star Quality Assurance award for our self-catering lodges. Our aim is to provide a luxury experience for our guests and to receive the top award is recognition of the hard work that we have all put into the business.

“We engaged fully with the VisitScotland team and received invaluable support, assistance and expert guidance throughout our journey. We will look forward to working with Jo, Dennis and their colleagues in the future.”

Jo Robinson, VisitScotland Regional Director said: “It was a pleasure to present the team at Dalriada Luxury Lodges with their well-deserved 5-star plaque. My sincere congratulations go to them on this outstanding achievement and I wish them continued success for the future.”

“Our Quality Assurance schemes are world-leading and provide a trusted, independent and impartial source of information for visitors. The star rating reflects the entire visitor experience, as well as the investment in the business to make it as economically sustainable and profitable as it can be.”

Developed and improved for over 30 years, VisitScotland’s Quality Assurance Schemes are world-leading and provide a trusted, independent and impartial source of information for visitors. They allow businesses not just to meet visitor expectations, but to exceed them.

For more information about the property visit:

For more information on Quality Assurance visit:

Notes to Editors

  • Follow us on twitter: @visitscotnews
  • VisitScotland is Scotland’s national tourism organisation. Its core purpose is to maximise the economic benefit of tourism to Scotland.
  • The organisation’s core objective is to contribute to the Tourism 2020 Strategy ambition of growing tourism revenues by £1 billion by 2020.
  • This will be supported by five overarching strategies: Marketing, Events, Quality and Sustainability, Inclusive Tourism, International Engagement.
  • The organisation employs 700 people and has offices and VisitScotland Information Centres across Scotland.
  • Spending by tourists in Scotland generates around £12 billion of economic activity in the wider Scottish supply chain and contributes around £6 billion to Scottish GDP (in basic prices). This represents about 5% of total Scottish GDP
  • For VisitScotland’s press releases go to, tourism statistics and frequently asked questions go to
  • Where possible, a Gaelic speaker will be made available for broadcast interviews on request (Far an tèid iarraidh, agus far am bheil sin nar comas, bruidhinnidh neach le Gàidhlig aig agallamh)
  • For holiday information on Scotland go to
  • For information about business tourism in Scotland go to

2018 Year of Young People

  • The Year of Young People 2018 will be the next of the Scottish Government’s series of themed years, following the Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology 2017.
  • The Year of Young People (YoYP 2018) will inspire Scotland through its young people aged 8 to 26, celebrating their achievements, valuing their contributions to communities and creating new opportunities for them to shine locally, nationally and globally
  • Central to YoYP 2018 will be a celebratory events programme that puts young people at the heart of its development and delivery, creating new and valuable experiences for young Scots and the wider public, with links to the inaugural 2018 European Championships.
  • Over 200 young people throughout Scotland are currently being recruited to become YoYP 2018 Ambassadors. Ambassadors will ensure that people and organisations in their communities know about what’s happening and will lead on projects and activities to create events and opportunities to celebrate young people.
  • The Year of Young People will have six themes which were developed in co-production with young people themselves:
  • oParticipation – looking at how young people can influence public services and decisions which affect their lives
  • oEducation – creating a stronger role for young people in shaping their learning
  • oHealth and Wellbeing – supporting young people to lead healthier, active lives and have opportunities to learn about and improve their mental health and resilience
  • oEquality and Discrimination – broadcasting the value of young Scots, challenging negative perceptions of young people, and supporting young people to take leading roles in challenging discrimination in all its forms.
  • oEnterprise and regeneration – celebrating young people’s role in innovation, entrepreneurship and the Scottish economy as well as making Scotland a greener and more pleasant place to live
  • oCulture – celebrating young people’s talent and contribution to Scottish culture and arts.
  • Further information on what’s happening and how people can get involved can be found on the new website or @YOYP2018 on Twitter.