These notes augment those sent with your booking and cover specific guidance related to the Coronavirus. If you have visited Doune before, you will know how the relaxed atmosphere and remote beauty of Knoydart combine to create a special experience. The necessary restrictions to minimise the risk of any Covid infections will affect how we welcome and look after you. However, we will try to ensure a minimum of disruption while keeping you safe. These notes will help you prepare for your visit and guide you to enjoying your time at Doune. As always, we will do our utmost to extend you a warm welcome and help you discover the magic of Doune.
This is the most difficult and important thing for us to ask of you. If you feel there is any risk or likelihood that you or any of your party may be Covid infected or recently exposed to a Covid infected person, please cancel your visit. We know that doing so will be disappointing and disruptive, but it will help protect others and we will look forward to welcoming you another time. We have waived all our usual booking conditions so there are no charges for late or short-notice cancellations. You will find a list of Covid symptoms at the end of these notes.
In the unlikely event that there is a Covid infection event at Doune, or Government regulations change, there is a possibility that it may be necessary for us to cancel your visit at short notice. We will only do so if unavoidable and apologise in advance should this be necessary.
Preparing for your Visit - Things to Bring with You
Please bring your own Covid personal protective equipment with you. We will supply suitable hand sanitizer and we have supplies of additional face masks if needed.
To reduce the risk of cross-infection, we have removed some items normally provided in the rooms including books, games, magazines, and local guides. Please do bring your own if you wish. Electronic copies of our welcome guide and notes are available online and it will be helpful if you have your own device for browsing the internet. It will also be helpful if you can bring your own map: OS Sheet 33 Loch Alsh, Glen Shiel and Loch Hourn is the most useful. We will have paper copies of notes if needed.
Travelling to Doune
Depending on how you are travelling to visit us, please be alert to the potential hazard of contracting a Covid infection. If you are travelling using your own car the risk will be low. If you are travelling using public transport the risk will be higher. Regardless of how you are travelling please take appropriate measures to avoid becoming infected.
Arriving in Mallaig and Meeting the Doune Boat
Please see the separate notes sent with your booking. These include a map showing where you can park your car and the route from train station to the pier. If you are travelling by car, you can drive down onto the pier to drop your bags before parking. The boatman will sanitize luggage before loading it onboard. Please sanitize your hands just before embarkation – we will provide a suitable hand sanitizer – and a face covering will be mandatory while on the boat.
Arrival at Doune
The arrival at Doune will be a little different to usual. Once ashore, we will walk you across to the Stone Lodges along with any immediate hand luggage you require, observing safe social distancing. We will transport all your heavy luggage from the pier to your rooms. We will talk to you about your room and other arrangements, outside of your room.
You will find a link to a copy of these notes and other information about Doune at the end of this document.
Use of Toilets
The three Stone Lodge rooms have ensuite bathrooms. To minimise the risk of cross-infections please use the toilet in your own bathroom rather than the toilets in the dining room lobby. One of the toilets in the dining room lobby is reserved for use by the guest staying in the Bothy and the other is reserved for use by Doune Staff.
We have removed some items that would normally be in the room including books, magazines, games, clothes hangers, and wardrobe curtains. This is for your protection and to make it easier to clean and disinfect rooms between visits.
The gas fires can be tricky to light. Instructions are provided but if you have any problems lighting the fire please just let us know and we will do it for you.
Doune enjoys good internet access and all the rooms have WiFi coverage. Just look for and connect to the ‘Guest’ network. The password is ‘gripper15’. You will find these notes and other information about Doune in the Guest area of the Doune website.
Water in the room is potable. If possible, please fill drinking bottles in your room. If they can’t be filled in the room bring them to the kitchen and we will fill them for you.
While at Doune
Feel free to wander wherever you wish around Doune, but please respect the private houses. There is plenty to explore. The beach in front of the Lodge has a good area of sand at low tide. You may find deer, along with the chickens, in the park behind the White House and the area behind the Stone Lodges. The walk up the hill behind the dining room to the vehicle track takes about 15 minutes.
There is no need to wear face coverings while out and about at Doune but please respect the rules of ‘social distancing’. We will do likewise.
We usually have breakfast starting at 08.00 or 08.30 depending on the weather and on what people are planning to do during the day. Pack lunches are available for collection after breakfast. In the evening, we aim to have dinner starting at 19.30. During your stay, use of the dining room will be limited to guests staying at Doune. The dining room will be divided into four areas and each room will have its own table. We would ask you to use the same table throughout your stay.
Before entering the dining room, please clean your hands using the sanitizer in the lobby. There is no need for you to wear a face covering in the dining room but please maintain a safe distance from other guests who are not part of your group. We will wear face coverings while serving you with food and drinks.
Dining Room Lobby
There is limited space in the dining room lobby so please avoid congregating here. If you would like to examine any of the merchandise on display, please ask us and we will show it to you. This is minimise the risk of any cross contamination.
There are a variety of walks to be enjoyed that start directly from Doune. For exploring further afield, our boat Gripper is available to access the remoter walks. Many of the walks end at Inverie where we can collect you by minibus or boat. When the conditions are right, we also use Gripper for wildlife watching trips or the occasional bit of fishing.
We will be available to talk with after dinner to discuss any ideas you have and to arrange any boat/minibus drop-offs or pickups you require. If using the boat or minibus you will be asked to wear face coverings.
If you need to contact us in an emergency, there is an intercom in the dining room lobby. There is also a Fire Alarm call button by the intercom. And there is an additional Fire Alarm call button by the Fire Hose between the dining room and Stone Lodge room accommodation.
Departure from Doune
On the morning of departure, please pack any major items of luggage before breakfast and leave them in the lobby by the door of your room. We will transport luggage to the pier while you are having breakfast.
The bill for your visit will be available on the morning of departure. You can pay by bank transfer or by card. Where possible, we will avoid the use the of cash and coins.
After your Visit
In the unlikely event, you develop symptoms in the week following your visit you should immediately get a test. If this is positive, please let us know as soon as possible. This will allow us to alert other guests who were staying at the same time of your visit that they may have been at some risk of exposure to an infection.
A Note of Thanks
Thank you for taking time to read these notes and for your help to us in keeping everyone safe. By changing how we operate and implementing additional cleaning and disinfection routines, we have done what we can to minimise the risk of an infection occurring at Doune. If you do become aware of any hazard that we may not have considered or have any other concern, please do talk to us.
The main symptoms of coronavirus are:
- a high temperature – this means you feel hot to touch on your chest or back (you do not need to measure your temperature)
- a new, continuous cough – this means coughing a lot for more than an hour, or 3 or more coughing episodes in 24 hours (if you usually have a cough, it may be worse than usual)
- a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste – this means you've noticed you cannot smell or taste anything, or things smell or taste different to normal
Other symptoms may include:
- aches and pains.
- sore throat
- a rash on skin, or discolouration of fingers or toes.