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The Royal Burgh of Dornoch is placed within the historical county town of Sutherland, overlooking the Dornoch Firth, south towards Tarbetness and the Moray Coast and North to Golspie, Brora and Helmsdale. The town has a population of about 1300 which swells greatly during the main trading season (Easter to October) due to the high number of tourists and visitors to the area. A designated National Scenic and Conservation Area, Dornoch is a popular and tranquil location with its unique atmosphere, outstanding scenery and the mild micro climate making it a popular visitor attraction for many. The world renowned Royal Dornoch Championship course is a wonderful venue and a challenging test of golfing skills. The course is world-renowned and is a ‘must do’ pilgrimage for the committed golfer; the unique setting of Royal Dornoch makes it an aspiration to play. Dornoch offers visitors and residents alike a good range of facilities and amenities including shops, hotels, schools and FE College plus its Seaside Award for its clean bathing beach. The area has a much broader appeal with walks, fishing, field sports, and water sports all being readily available. There are a great many places of historic interest within an hours’ drive. The town has some excellent Sandstone buildings, including the c.13th Century Cathedral, the Bishop’s Palace (now a Hotel), the Courthouse and Old Town Jail. The town has a charm and elegance that makes this a very popular residential area. Dornoch is only an hour from Inverness, which has an Airport and major transport links. The town of Tain is circa 6 miles away which has an extended range of specialist shops/supermarkets and services.
DESCRIPTION The Gordon House Gallery and Café is an attractive business set within a charming property, the original aspects date from the mid-1800s with modern extensions. Set in a most prominent trading location within the town of Dornoch, the café benefits from a high level of passing trade throughout the year but is exceptionally busy during the main tourist season (April to October). Both the café and accommodation are deceptively spacious offering an excellent quality home and lifestyle business operation. The café is situated on the ground floor with street level access, providing a total net internal area of 130m2. A most attractive aspect of this sale is the ability to offer extra covers than is presently catered for (30 seats). The exceptionally well-appointed kitchen and service areas would be capable of producing a range of freshly prepared and home-baked items in excess of the current menu provision. The area set aside for the display of retails items could be reduced to generate a higher level of catering turnover. The modern 2-bedroom owner’s accommodation is located above the trading elements and offers a very large lounge, dining area and well-appointed kitchen. In addition, there are two double bedrooms plus a family bathroom making this a comfortable and spacious home. Both aspects of this sale are presented to a very high standard and reflect the energy and investment of the current owner. TRADE Currently operating on a year-round basis with the exception of January, through choice the business trades 5-days per week, from 10am to 4:30pm. There is a strong demand from local residents and the influx of tourists during the main season which means there is scope to trade at a higher level should new owners so desire. There is undoubted demand for an evening meal service and opening 7 days a week. The present configuration of the café allows for the serving of up to 30 customers at free-standing tables and chairs but there is capacity to increase customer through put with a reconfiguration of the retail aspects. The business offers a wide selection of home-made beverages and snacks but with new owners could increase the range of catering on offer. In addition, the café sells a wide range of gifts, art works and tourist items which draw in a number of visitors. The business has a sound reputation locally and on various websites including its own: www.gordonhousegallery.co.uk. Where new owners do not wish to live above the café, the accommodation could provide another excellent source of income as a high-end holiday let. THE PROPERTY The building is a 2-storey property of stone construction under a pitched slate roof dating from the mid-1800s with modern extensions to the rear. THE CAFÉ From a prominent roadside location in the centre of Dornoch, the business has a well-signed frontage with street level access. The entrance has an inner vestibule from where access is gained to the main customer area via the right-hand door. The total internal aspects of the café extend to c130m2 and upon entry it is evident that the business is exceptionally well-presented throughout with modern furniture, fixtures and fittings. The main customer area is set to free-standing tables and chairs to comfortably seat around 30 covers; there is scope to expand seating capacity should new owners wish to do so. There is a servery counter with a till and a beverage preparation area set to one end of the restaurant. The substantial main kitchen with a modern extraction unit has a pot-wash area, ample food preparation spaces and a further service room to the rear with storage spaces. Internally the cafe has a comprehensive range of art work on the walls and other craft / gift items available for purchase. Off a corridor from the cafe area are disabled and unisex bathrooms, presented to a high standard. There are also ample storage areas, a cleaner’s cupboard and a dedicated staff W.C. GROUNDS The cafe and house present a substantial property with a large footprint. The spaces to the rear provide a low maintenance area with a private external seating area and storage spaces. Parking is by public parking spaces immediately opposite the café. SERVICES The property is fully double glazed benefitting from mains electricity, water and drainage as well as oil-fired central heating throughout. Calor gas is used for the hob within the kitchen. The café has an air-conditioning system. The business is fully fire compliant and meets all environmental health requirements. Both the house and café have Wi-Fi.
A most attractive feature of the sale is the contemporary 2-bedroom owner’s flat, offering a charming and comfortable living space. There is a private access from the side of the property which leads into the rear hall of the business and then into a spacious reception hallway with stairs leading to the first floor. This appealing home reflects modern standards of space, fixtures and fittings also featuring attractive laminate wood flooring throughout. There is a spacious kitchen/dining room presenting ample wall and floor mounted units. Off the kitchen is a commodious family lounge which benefits from extensive full-height glazing. From a corridor are the two large double bedrooms and the well-appointed family shower room.
The business has been within the control of the vendors’ family for many years but it is a desire to focus his attentions on other non-related business interests that brings this desirable business and home to the market as a leasehold venture.