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Braemar Village, 2-12 (Even Nos) Mar Road, Fife Arms Hotel

A Category B Listed Building in Aboyne, Upper Deeside and Donside, Aberdeenshire

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Latitude: 57.006 / 57°0'21"N

Longitude: -3.4002 / 3°24'0"W

OS Eastings: 315051

OS Northings: 791415

OS Grid: NO150914

Mapcode National: GBR W0.DQ3P

Mapcode Global: WH6MG.R51F

Entry Name: Braemar Village, 2-12 (Even Nos) Mar Road, Fife Arms Hotel

Listing Date: 22 February 1991

Category: B

Source: Historic Scotland

Source ID: 337828

Historic Scotland Designation Reference: LB6292

Building Class: Cultural

Location: Crathie and Braemar

County: Aberdeenshire

Electoral Ward: Aboyne, Upper Deeside and Donside

Parish: Crathie And Braemar

Traditional County: Aberdeenshire

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Later 19th century, with significant later alterations and additions, 1890s and 1900s, now incorporating near contemporary single storey building to N. 3-storey and attic. Crenellated 2-storey, 2-bay entrance porch by A Marshall MacKenzie, 1905. Large purpose built hotel in very prominent location in centre of village. Traditional highland character with overhanging eaves, gabled principal elevation and timber decorative bargeboards. Squared coursed pink granite rubble, grey to outer bays, rubble to other elevations. Hoodmoulds to 3rd floor. Storeys divided by cill courses.

S (PRINCIPAL) ELEVATION: near-symmetrical 3-gabled central section with advanced gabled outer bays, that to right with weathervane. Off-centre large porch with pair of depressed arches with hoodmoulds and painted central Coat of Arms of Dukes of Fife to crenellations. Set in long rustic verandah with timber uprights. 2-storey canted windows (3-storey to left outer bay).

Timber sash and case windows with multi-pane upper sash (predominantly 9, 12, or 15 panes), plate-glass lower sashes. Large squared and coursed rubble stacks to ridge of principal elevation and to wallhead of E, N and W elevation. Purple slates. Cast-iron rainwater goods.

INTERIOR: modernised. Large ground floor hall with principal rooms leading off. Timber staircase with simple stained glass panels to stairwell. Two chimney pieces, both with timber surrounds; that to right with full height reeded pilasters and Duke of Fife Coat of Arms overmantle

Statement of Interest

The Fife Arms Hotel (named as such on 1st Edition OS Map) is a large and highly distinctive part of the streetscape in Braemar. It dominates with its imposing scale and displays many of the traditional architectural characteristics of the area with its timber bargeboards, pink and grey granite and its multi gabled principal elevation. Its distinctive regional style is also displayed by the Aberdeen-bonded stonework.

Of further note it has retained all of its timber sash and case windows with their distinctive Arts and Crafts multi-paned upper sashes and also the large number of original stacks.

The building is evidence of the expansion of the tourist trade in Braemar in the wake of Queen Victoria's visits and purchase of Balmoral, and the coming of the railway to the area. It is therefore important evidence of the social history of the area.

Plans of the hotel by A Marshall Mackenzie (undated) are held by the National Archive of Scotland. Mackenzie was an architect of national repute. A member of a major architectural dynasty, he began his career in the office of David Bryce. The majority of his work was undertaken in northern Scotland - among many other projects he was responsible for the rebuilding of Marischal College, Aberdeen. Royal patronage demonstrated his ability and fame; he was responsible for the design of Crathie Kirk in 1893 and was subsequently chosen by the Duke and Duchess of Fife for the new Mar Lodge in 1895.

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