The Dower House was originally a traditional thatched farm house on the 3000 acre Highland Estate which was owned by the Mckenzies of Highfield from about 1540.At the beginning of the 1800s a conversion was made to the stone ornée style to give the lady dowager a residence out with Highfield House. This became The Dower House.
In the 1840s the estate was rented to the infamous and ambitious James Falconer Gillanders who, on behalf of the absentee landlords, was responsible for evicting hundreds of families from the Highland Glens, many of whom were forced to emigrate to America, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. This became known as the Highland Clearances – people were evicted to make room for something far more profitable – sheep!
In later times, The Dower House became a much sought after residence and Lord Gladstone, Prime Minister 4 times between 1868 and 1894, during the reign of Queen Victoria, took The Dower House as a shooting lodge.
At the beginning of the 20th century The Dower House was altered and extended further. In 1947 it became the Mckenzies family home when Highfield House was burnt to the ground. From then it remained very much the same until 1989 when Robyn and Mena bought the house from the Mckenzie family and converted it into a luxury hotel. Now The Dower House is a B&B and Robyn and Mena’s home.