Meet Charlotte, new Elsick House Manager

Charlotte joined Elsick House at the start of 2023 and was an instant fit to the whole Elsick team. Any visitor will be aware of the

Charlotte has always worked in the hospitality & events industry. She took a short break from the wedding side of things and worked in her own beauty business. Her feeling was that it was most definitely time to go back to brides as she missed the buzz of a wedding day and the timing was so perfect! On her first day she confided that she felt the house was such a hidden gem, “I was attracted instantly to its homely feel and beautiful gardens”.

When she is not looking after brides and corporate guests, Charlotte is kept busy with her 2 boys Jax and Leo, aged 5 & 7 and loves walking her two dogs Holly & Butch. She is based not so far away in Laurencekirk, surrounded by gorgeous countryside and alongside the long walks she enjoys socializing with family & friends .

Charlotte has a few golden rules that keep her focused.

I am a stickler for the little details & keeping organised and I am convinced that it takes the stress away from the bride and groom.

In my role, I become part of the extended guest list on a wedding day, and it is lovely to meet all the families- no weddings are ever the same !

My favourite part is listening to speeches.. its rare that I don’t get a bit tearful!

You need to meet Charlotte to appreciate her enthusiasm.

Shannon & Liam’s Elsick House Wedding

Bringing together Scottish and Irish traditions, Shannon and Liam’s wedding was all about connecting their two families from across the Celtic nations. Vows in Irish and Scottish food by Hudsons Catering, along with lots of personal touches, made their day truly special. Here’s what our Elsick bride Shannon had to say following the big day, with images by Suzie Smith Photography.

How did you first hear about Elsick House?

I first knew about Elsick when I saw photographs of a friend’s wedding here five years previously, although we had never actually visited the house until our first viewing. In fact, the only venue we viewed was Elsick House! Our criteria was simple – we wanted an exclusive use venue for the whole weekend and somewhere that could sleep our closest family as we would be hosting an Irish shindig the day after the wedding too.

What were your first impressions?

We were blown away when we came to view Elsick House! The house is immaculate and we really love how unique each bedroom is. There wasn’t really any question after that, simply ‘how do we proceed to book our wedding here?

What made your day unique?

We had a true mix of Scotland meets Ireland. My proudest moment on the wedding day was delivering half of my personal wedding vows in Liam’s native tongue of Irish! We were so fortunate to have Liam’s father and Shannon’s brother speaking during the ceremony which was a huge highlight for us both.

Hudson’s Catering produced some exceptional traditional Scottish dishes and for many of our Irish guests this was the first time tasting haggis. It was important to me that we would have a bagpiper at the wedding, which is not tradition in Ireland. For our groomsmen, the morning of the wedding was the first time they had put on a kilt so it was a real novelty. It’s safe to say that the Scots and Irish are some of the friendliest and that really showed with how well our two sides partied together!

The day itself had snow, rain, sun and wind so we had to be adaptable! I definitely blame my 20 minute delay on the snow!

Details of the day

We used a lot of gold, pearl, cream, mirrors and crystal to create a beautiful space and a lot of hard work went into it. We used areas and landmarks from the island Liam grew up on as our table names with a picture of our dogs in each place displayed on the tables. This was very personal to us as the girls are a huge part of our lives and the images were designed by our dear friend Holly.

I found my dress in Lillia Bridal, which was the first shop I went to. The men were dressed in the Isle of Skye tartan and all of the kilts were from Neil Selbie, where Liam is a regular customer.

Would you recommend Elsick House?

In a heartbeat! And we wish we could return to celebrate every anniversary! My advice to future couples of Elsick is to simply trust the team! They are experts in knowing exactly what they are doing, what works, and that the day will run to time!


Hudsons Catering

Suzie Smith Photographer

Videography: AD Media

Humanist: Caron Harper Independent Humanist Ceremonies

Florist: Isla Duncan

Dress: Lilia Bridal with alterations by Martine Blair

Kilts: Neil Selbie

Cake: Cake Affair

Kilted Sax: Rich Gordon Music Company

Band: Juke Box Hero

Hair and makeup: Vanity Studio

Dog Chaperone: Horse & Country

Photo Booth: Rose Creative Studio & Events

Ring design: Lava Jewellery Design

Download our wedding brochure here or view a virtual tour of the house and grounds. To arrange a visit to Elsick House or for more information about wedding and events please contact us at

Keely & Ross’ Dream Wedding at Elsick House

If you’ve ever wondered what a dream wedding in Aberdeenshire looks like, just take a look at Keely and Ross’ stunning day. Keely had earmarked Elsick House as her ideal wedding venue before Ross had even popped the question! So in 2020, when Ross perfectly proposed on a beautiful black beach in Iceland, Keely starting wedding planning straight away. She had already fallen in love with Elsick House through Instagram, so viewing the house and grounds in person only confirmed their choice.

Keely: “I remember visiting Elsick for the first time and although photographs capture the beauty of the house and grounds, seeing it for ourselves was something else. It completely exceeded our expectations. The grounds at Elsick are just beautiful with so many photo opportunities! The rose arch and bridge over the pond are special unique features and the house itself is so charming.”

Ross: “Having exclusive use of the venue really appealed and the beautiful setting just sealed the deal for us. When we arrived, Alison was extremely helpful and friendly. She was so supportive with our enquiries throughout all of the planning process and gave us some great advice.”

Keely: “Our day itself was all so amazing and went swimmingly. My uncle sang me down the aisle so that was a really special moment. We loved that the staff at Elsick and Hudsons took all our ideas on board so we could make our day really personal. We decorated the marquee with just flowers as we felt that complimented our style and Elsick’s – the natural vibe with flowers and greenery looked perfect next to Elsick’s beautiful gardens.”

Ross: “The gardens are fantastic and even at night we gathered all our guests outside for some sparkler photos under the rose pergola. We then went inside the marquee to continue the party. Our band played our first dance which was “Times Like These” by Foo Fighters. We wanted a song that fitted our music taste but still had a nice meaning behind it. We started the song slow and acoustic and ended it with the normal rocky tempo to get the dance floor going!”

Keely: “We chose to stay an extra night at Elsick which helped us make the most of our weekend. We had a chilled family get together the day after the wedding which we all really enjoyed.”

Ross: “We couldn’t have had a better experience planning our wedding or on our actual wedding day/weekend.”

Keely: “We would 100% recommend Elsick House – It really was a dream.”

Keely and Ross’ Supplier Shoutouts

Venue: Elsick House with Hudsons Catering

Photographer: Nicola Stewart Photography

Videographer: NL Visuals

Florist: Isla Duncan Florist

Humanist: Eddie Kennedy

Bridal Gown: Rosa Clara from Ivory Grace

Ross’ attire: Hebridean Glisk kilt from Gibbs of Inverurie

Band: 3 Card Trick (Coast Entertainments)

MUA: Melissa MUA

Hair: Zoe Gordon

Download our wedding brochure here or view a virtual tour of the house and grounds. To arrange a visit to Elsick House or for more information about wedding and events please contact us at

Lasting first impressions ~ Hayley & Barry’s Love Story

Some things are just meant to be! A chance profile photo popping up on Facebook led to Barry and Hayley’s first date and an unexpected detour resulted in the discovery of Elsick House, which later became their wedding venue!

The lovely Hayley and Barry were married at Elsick last October and we asked Hayley to share their love story with us. Photography by Rubislaw Studio.

When and where did you and Barry meet?

We first started talking to each other back in 2016 but unfortunately we lost touch as I spent the summer in Australia and Barry spent time offshore with limited internet access. Months later, Barry recognised me when my profile popped up on his Facebook as a suggested friend through a mutual acquaintance. He took the chance to send me a message and we met each other for our first official date. 3 hours later and after several cups of tea and coffee, we parted ways after laughing and chatting as if we had known each other for years already.

Tell us about the proposal.

We went on holiday to visit my parents in Spain during the Easter holidays in 2019. With the plan to go and watch the sunrise at a beautiful local beach, Barry woke me up at 7.15am. We knew that if we wanted to be there for sunrise, we should have been at the beach already. When I realised the time, I simply decided it would make more sense to go the following day as we would miss sunrise – I was completely unaware of what he had planned! Barry managed to convince me that we should still go.

Sitting on the beach watching the beautiful sky as it changed colour, Barry checked various settings on his camera before returning to where I was sitting and declared that “It is about time we make things official.” Confused, I asked Barry to repeat what he had said. At that, Barry got down on one knee.

Completely taken aback and filled with emotion, I threw my arms around Barry and started to bubble whilst repeatedly asking him if he was being serious. Of course, there was only ever going to be one answer when my best friend asked me to marry him and spend the rest of my life with him.

How did you first hear about Elsick House?

A wee while prior to our engagement, we came across Elsick House by chance one Saturday afternoon. We were on our way to the beach with our golden retriever, Baker, when we got a phone call from a family member who needed help. We turned around and set off to help. Following the country roads, we came across a bus. Barry exclaimed “Why would a bus like that be on these roads?” I’m unsure why but I replied with “I bet there is a wedding happening close by.” We continued driving and turned the corner to see the sign for Elsick House. As we drove past, we were blown away by the beautiful driveway and commented on the fact it must be a beautiful venue if that’s what the driveway looks like.

What were your first impressions?

We were blown away by the driveway and thought it looked very grand. We then proceeded to look at Elsick House website and discovered that it was indeed a stunning venue. After we got engaged we couldn’t wait to see it in person so I contacted the house before we even left Spain. We were amazed with how beautiful the gardens were in Spring 2019. The house itself was extraordinary. Barry is very into his photography and was in his element thinking about the different photo opportunities.

What made you decide Elsick House was going to be the venue for your special day?

It was the perfect venue for us from start to finish. The beautiful gardens, the stunning house, the marquee set up. The attention to detail was phenomenal. The Elsick team and their amazing service from our first enquiry to going to view the venue in person. We just knew that we would feel special on our big day.

We also loved the fact that it was an exclusive use venue and it very much felt (and absolutely is true) the staff care. It doesn’t feel as if you are just another number in a business. We loved how personal it felt from our first email enquiry right through until after our wedding day.

What was your favourite part of your wedding day?

I don’t think either of us can pick just one part/story from our wedding day. It was a truly magical day that we wouldn’t have changed for the world. I guess we loved how intimate and relaxed our day was. We had an absolute ball celebrating our marriage with just our closest friends and family and we felt we were able to be fully present and enjoy the day due to how relaxed it was. Elsick House and Hudsons clearly make a fantastic team as everything seemed to run so smoothly. Both Elsick and Hudsons went above and beyond in every way possible and we are incredibly grateful for all their effort.  

What made your day unique?

After the heartache of postponing our wedding on several occasions (due to Coronavirus and the restrictions) we decided that we would proceed with our third date no matter what. Luckily the restrictions had eased enough at that time to allow the bridal party to not have to wear masks and to be able to have a ceilidh.

Due to it being a small wedding, we managed to have a table layout where we were all essentially at one big rectangular table together. This felt incredibly special and unique as we were all able to see each other and to enjoy the atmosphere together.

Would you recommend Elsick House and why?

We would wholeheartedly recommend Elsick House. It is a stunning wedding venue where you know you are going to receive outstanding service from start to finish and your wedding day is going to be made as special as possible. A truly magical place.

Hayley and Barry’s Suppliers: Venue: Elsick House with Hudsons Catering ~ Photographer: Rubislaw Studio ~ Videographer: Flat 4D Media ~ Florist: Artemisia Floral ~ Humanist Celebrant: Denise Morton ~ Bridal gown: Pronovias ~ Groom’s attire: Barry wore his own family tartan called Pienaar tartan. ~ Band: The Reel Stramash Ceilidh Band

Download our wedding brochure here or view a virtual tour of the house and grounds.

To arrange a visit to Elsick House or for more information about wedding and events please contact us at

Wedding Open Day on Sunday 2nd April 2023

We are just a bit excited!!!!

On Sunday 2nd April from 12-4pm, come to Elsick House where you will be welcomed with a glass of fizz and invited to look around the house, gardens and marquee. Chat about your plans with our House Managers, Charlotte and Karen, and our trusted partners Hudsons Catering.

We’re also very excited to showcase these fantastic local wedding suppliers:

PhotographyBy Rhea and Calum Riddell. VideographerSimon King. FlowersIsla Duncan Florist, Without A Hitch, Flurish Floral Studio . CakePam Rennie Cake Design and Cakes By Chloe . Bridalwear and accessoriesIvory Grace and RedRocks. Makeup, Hair & BeautyKelly Daun MUA from The Lounge at Chapelton and Rachel Raine Make Up GroomswearNeil Selbie & Co. StationeryHollie Bruce Design. Table and chair hireRustic Look. Venue Styling Illumin8 , Sweet Table Candy Corner Celebrant – Angela Craven-Foulger. Registrar – Emma Mcpherson Stonehaven Registrar. Pipes -Christopher HatsHire a Hat.

Our wedding brochure can be downloaded here.

Exclusive Use Wedding Venue ~ Lauren and Ali

Choosing an exclusive use venue was important to Lauren and Ali. After postponing their original date due to the pandemic, spending their wedding weekend with family and friends in a relaxed and welcoming venue was top of their priority list and even on the wettest day of the year in Aberdeenshire, it was everything they dreamed of.  

Lauren explains, “We got engaged in Santorini. We were watching the sunset one evening and I couldn’t believe it when I heard our song come on (Jess Glynne, Take Me Home).  I turned around to see Ali on one knee! We spent the rest of the holiday in our own happy bubble! When we returned we started to look at venues and agreed that we liked the idea of something that is exclusive use. We searched online and came across Elsick House which we discovered is only ten minutes from where we live, so we requested a viewing!

As we drove towards the house we both said, “this is the one!” It was so close to our own home yet it felt really secluded with so much peace and quiet within the beautiful grounds.

Donna Murray Photography

We had a warm welcome from Alison who gave us all the information we needed and then we looked around the house and all its rooms. We quickly got excited and started planning things like who would sleep in each room and how we would use the public spaces! Everything was perfect for us both and we found the whole experience so welcoming and relaxing as well as informative. A week later, we visited again with my Mum and sister. We had that same magical feeling again that we’d experienced coming up the drive for the first time, so we knew it was right and we booked our wedding right then!”

What made your wedding unique? “It was the rainiest day of the year in Aberdeenshire and it down poured from the moment we got up until the evening! However, when the rain eventually stopped we went out to the walled gardens where Donna Murray Photography captured the most amazing night time portraits of us, which we absolutely love!”

Donna Murray Photography

Why would you recommend Elsick House? “There are two main reasons – the house itself and the staff. Having exclusive use of the house meant we could share special time with all our own family and friends under one roof. Our guests felt at home, enjoying a drink around the fireplace or taking a walk in the gardens together. We loved that we didn’t have to say goodbye to our family on the night of the wedding – we carried on into the evening at the house and we woke up the next day to spend time talking all about it. We felt like we had an extra day of our wedding.

Alison, Karen and Joyce were fantastic. The communication was always quick and they answered any query we had. We were made to feel so welcome on every visit and the staff took a genuine interest in our lives so we felt like we really got to know each other. We know there are many weddings at Elsick House but Alison and the team made us feel like we were the only couple they had. Along with the wonderful team from Hudson’s Catering, they couldn’t do enough to make sure our day ran perfectly.”

Photography: Donna Murray Photography

Florist: Kim Dalglish Florist

Brides dress: Donna Salado at Elmar Bridal

Kilt: 8Yards

Catering: Hudsons Catering

Cake: Arty Crafty Cakes by Leah

Stationery: One of A Kind

Donna Murray Photography

Download our wedding brochure here or view a virtual tour of the house and grounds.

To arrange a visit to Elsick House or for more information about wedding and events please contact us at

Meet Rachel, Social Media Manager

Rachel has worked ‘behind the scenes,’ at Elsick for two and a half years, managing our social media and website content.

How did you come to work for Elsick House? I was already working for the owners of Elsick House (the Duke and Duchess of Fife) as I manage the social media and organise the events programme for the nearby new town of Chapelton. As Elsick House got busier with more weddings they needed someone to create the content for their social media. I had been a guest at a friends’ wedding at Elsick House in the spring of that year and fell in love with it. I couldn’t say no.

Social Media Manager, Rachel. Photo by Emma Lawson.

What does a typical day in your role involve? It’s a varied role which can involve going to Elsick to take my own photos of the gardens and grounds for social media or selecting photos from wedding photographers’ galleries that we can use on our pages and website. I create and upload content but also spend time online, interacting with other accounts and looking at insights and trends.

What is your favourite part of the job? I feel very privileged to be granted access to wedding photos and I always have a smile on my face when I’m looking through couples’ galleries. I used to run my own business making wedding stationery and I always loved hearing about people’s plans for their big day. It’s amazing to see all the ways that couples put their style into Elsick House, each wedding is so unique and Elsick provides such a great backdrop for making it your own. Learning about the history of the house and its royal connection has been so fascinating too.

What is your favourite part of the house and why? I love the Alexandra bridal suite. It’s so bright and spacious. The traditional features are the perfect backdrop for all those ‘getting ready’ photos. I also love that it has an open plan en suite and a bath with a view, it feels so luxurious and romantic. The marquee is also fantastic. It looks right into the gardens and has a huge space for a dancefloor.

What do you enjoy doing out of work? Taking my daughters to their dancing, netball and piano lessons takes up most of my free time but we love weekends for visiting family, going ice skating or having movie nights. Our puppy Louis is an 11 month old black lab, he is lots of fun and shares his name with the late Duke of Fife’s black lab, which is no coincidence. There is a mural in the disused swimming pool at Elsick that the Duke commissioned, featuring all of his favourite things, including his beloved dog Louis. I was researching the mural right before we got our puppy and the name just seemed to fit. We really enjoy going on family walks with him and we often go on The Chapelton Trail which takes us past the Elsick gates.

Rachel and husband Martyn, arriving at Elsick House as wedding guests in 2019 (Emma Lawson Photography) and their daughters with Louis, enjoying a walk on the Elsick House East Drive, part of The Chapelton Trail.

What do you think makes Elsick House so special? The gardens are simply breath-taking, they look stunning all year round thanks to Alec and Mandy, the gardeners here. There are so many beautiful places for ceremonies and photos. When I arrived as a guest at our friends’ wedding at Elsick I remember thinking they had chosen somewhere truly special to get married. I was amazed that it was so close to Aberdeen yet hidden away in acres of land and trees – it felt so private and exclusive. Our friends adopted Elsick as their ‘home from home’ for a full wedding weekend and everyone was made to feel so welcome by the staff. I now know that every wedding is treated with the same care and attentiveness, it’s a really special team.

Download our wedding brochure here or view a virtual tour of the house and grounds.

To arrange a visit to Elsick House or for more information about wedding and events please contact us on

Meet Barbara, Elsick Secretary

Barbara has worked ‘behind the scenes’ here for two years now, taking care of the admin for the Elsick Estate, the farm and Elsick House itself. Barbara admits it can be a very varied role with everything from processing wedding invoices to registering calves born on the farm!

Although she is based at the farm office, Barbara joins the rest of the team at Elsick House for lunch breaks. We knew she was going to be a sociable one when she agreed to come to a Christmas night out before even starting the job!

Outside of work, Barbara and her husband enjoy time with their family and are kept busy on their own farm. Barbara loves spending time with her horse Finn, enjoying the countryside and sometimes taking part in riding club activities.

We asked Barbara what she thinks makes Elsick House so special. “It really is a lovely place. It’s so peaceful with beautiful gardens and interiors but I think it’s so special because the team take such pride in it, and that’s clear for any bridal party or house let guests to see.”

To arrange a visit to Elsick House or for more information about weddings, events or staying with us please contact

Meet Karen, Assistant House Manager

When you’re greeted at the doors of Elsick House by Karen, you just know you’re going to be well looked after. She fell in love with Elsick when her daughter Autumn got married here in 2017 and since landing her “dream job” as assistant house manager 2 years ago, family orientated Karen treats all our guests like one of her own. Whether it’s chasing after a car full of bridal flowers or titivating all the details in the house before wedding parties arrive, Karen always goes the extra mile to make sure dream weddings come true.  

Emma Lawson Photography

What does your role involve? A typical day here involves showing couples around the house and grounds, answering enquiries, sending quotes, remittance advice etc and sometimes even helping with turning the house around after a wedding. On wedding days I’d say it’s a job where many hats have to be worn. On one occasion, a bride and her bridesmaids were dropped off at the marquee entrance and the wedding car drove off with their flowers still in the boot. I had to chase the driver down the drive trying to catch his attention. Thankfully I did, so he reversed back and all was well. Ultimately it’s all about doing whatever we can to make peoples dream weddings happen, I love every part of my job!

What is your favourite part of the house? The study is a beautiful room looking onto the gardens. We use it as our office when there is no one occupying the house and it’s the best office view I have ever had.

The Study in Elsick House

What do you enjoy doing out of work? I love spending time with my family, reading and baking. I’ve recently become a Nannie again to my second grandson so both of those things come in very useful when babysitting!

What’s your favourite quote or saying? Personally I think “it’s nice to be important but it’s more important to be nice.” For a wedding quote, “Grooms, know this: Everyone is watching the bride, but the bride only sees you.”

Which 3 words do you think guests of Elsick House would use to describe you? I hope they would say I am cheerful, approachable and conscientious.

What do you think makes Elsick House so special? There’s so much history in the house and the feeling you get when you walk through the front doors is indescribable. Every room is full of character, the bedrooms all have their own distinctive style and of course the fabulous grounds are breath-taking.

Karen and family at Autumn’s wedding at Elsick House in 2017 (Deeside Photographics) and with her two grandsons, Broden and Blake.

To arrange a visit to Elsick House or for more information about weddings, events or staying with us please contact

Meet Joyce, Elsick Housekeeper

No one knows “the big hoose” better than Joyce, who has been the Housekeeper here at Elsick for 20 years. She makes the house sparkle in more ways than one with her vivacious personality and animal shaped towels in every room! Anyone who regularly follows Elsick House will also know of her tremendous weightlifting skills, giving her the affectionate nickname ‘Iron Grandma.’ Joyce was recently invited to take part in a photoshoot called ‘40 women over 40,’ doesn’t she look INCREDIBLE in this photo by Susan Renée?

Photo by Susan Renée at Kingshill Studios

What does your role involve? As housekeeper my typical day is tidying, stripping and making beds, hoovering, washing and ironing. I wield a mean duster too! I also paint more than Picasso, and I’m just as famous, haha! I’ve even been known to do some furniture removal, anything that needs doing really!

Tell us about your previous job? I came from Balmoral Castle where I looked after all the beautiful linen there. I then moved to Elsick to look after the Late Duke of Fife.

What do you enjoy most about working at Elsick? The best part is meeting all the people who come to stay. I’ve made lots of fond memories here and I love to see our guests enjoying wonderful food and company.

What are your interests outside of work? I enjoy weight training and won the commonwealth powerlifting championships in Canada. I quite enjoy going for walks too and living on the Elsick estate I am surrounded by beautiful places to go.

Bodybuilding at age 50 and powerlifting at age 60, Joyce says “there’s no challenge that can’t be overcome with brute force or determination.”

What’s your favourite saying? “I hope your feet are clean?!”

How do you think Elsick House guests would describe you? Chatty, no nonsense and strong!

What do you think makes Elsick House special? The people who work here make it a great place to be.

Photo by Emma Lawson Photography

To arrange a visit to Elsick House or for more information about wedding, events or staying with us please contact