b'MEMBERS THE CARNEGIE CLUBTodd Ruppert Gail Boggsa haunted room with secret passageways while telling them ghost stories. Our very first visit at Christmas, seeing Skibo wrappedMy thoughts on Skibo may be a little I have so many favourite memories of timein a blanket of snow was especially magical,different from most as I am a family member: spent at Skibo. My wife, Karen, and I willas was meeting the Harper family.Margaret Carnegie was my grandmother. never forget our 25th wedding anniversary onEverything about the castle keeps usMy mother was born in the castle and I was 26 June 2007 when the staff secretly got allcoming back! The magic of beauty, peacechristened at the top of the front hall stairs. the guests to have dinner in the Clubhouse soand calm that we experience every time weI spent a lot of summers there as a child.continue to improve it. With their effort, we could have Mr. Carnegies dining room allare here. The superbly attentive and friendlyWhen we discovered that Skibo had beenSkibo has been truly restored to its former to ourselves. Then theres the first time westaff, seeing old friends, meeting new people,resold, and would be made into a memberslife filled with people and joy.had our daughters, Kierstin and Kali, with uswalking the stunningly beautiful grounds,I feel privilegedclub, I was delighted and held my breath toThe most poignant memory I have of in 1996 when they were then eight and four.dining in the exquisite castle and golf house,see how it would work out.the early days is when then head butler James We stayed in Laundry Cottage and one nightdrinking champagne a-plenty. I couldto be one of \x1e eI remember feeling nervous on our firstoverheard me describe the spreading of my had a private barbecue. The girls loved howgo on and on. Weve been around thevisit to Skibo as members. To my delight,mothers ashes in Loch Evelix above the light it was late into the night, and they alsoglobe but, to us, there is nothing thatfirst members I found that not much had changed apartsalmon ladder. When I walked to the golf remember a housekeeper showing themcompares to Skibo Castle. from repairs and redecorating. Now, theclub the next day there was a tartan-covered entire Club has been elevated to an amazingtable with a bottle of whisky and glass on standard by Eve and Ellis. What stands outthe bridge. I knew this was a gesture for for me particularly, is their commitment tome from James, in honour of my mother. preserving the integrity of Skibo while theyI have never forgotten that kindness. I return L I F Eto Skibo to feel a bit of home and for the memories it affords me. I am forever grateful for its continued care. 8 4 A N D S O U L Sheri\x1fMacLaren At dawn, I jog8 5\x1e rough \x1e e forest Just after moving to London in 1995, friends visiting Dornoch called to say they Seven original members of The Carnegie Club share theirhad stumbled across a vast golfing estateand around \x1e e memories of special times spent at Skibo inviting membership into the fledglinglochs of SkiboCarnegie Club at Skibo Castle. We flew up and, captivated by the magnificent location, the golf course and such caring staff, we joined. My husband Woody wrote: At dawn, I jog through the forest and around the lochs David Duggan of Skibo, the serenity broken only by theLutz Me\x1f ingerreally quite quirky but Ellis Short has done ancries of startled pheasants as I emerge unbelievable job of refurbishing it. I love thethrough the mist. Over the years, Ellis and Ive always loved Dornoch and playing golf.light that comes in through the windows andEve Short have created vast improvements So, 25 years ago, when a friend told me therethe lovely bar. One of my favourite thingswith such integrity that the original qualitiesMy beloved late wife Britta and I became members of Skibo in 1995, was a fantastic course just 10 minutes awayabout Skibo is hearing the whirr of the golfand atmosphere that enthralled us still thrive.after we fell in love with the heaven on earth immediately after arrival. from Dornoch, my late partner Denise andbuggy when Im out on the green, bringingThose constants are the friendships we haveIn the early years, things could be pretty disorganised, but in a way these I went to have a look. We booked in forme a dram of whisky and a bacon sandwich.been privileged to enjoy, and a staff dedicatedyears were the funniest ones. The nights were usually short and the a three-night stay, from 30 June in 1995,I also love the view from the 17th tee, lookingto kindness, discretion, respect, excellencetraditional piping in the morning came too early! Since I have been and the driver, Donald Munro, met us atalong the red sunset. But my favourite thingand adventure. We, our four children anda mushroom hunter from my early days, I collected the most tasty cpes Interviews by Jane FulcherInverness airport. He asked if we wanted tois the staff and the people. When I first cametheir families, continue to enjoy theat Skibo during the summer, but the former chef refused to prepare take the scenic route. We heartily agreedto the castle I was against the dining tablethousands of acres of Skibo, knowing that thethem for fear of being poisoned. So Britta prepared them in the big old and he drove us up over Bonar Bridge onset-up as Im not a natural socialiser,quality and security will remain.castle kitchen, while I watched from the table with a bottle of wine. the most beautiful summers day. By the timealthough Denise always was, but Im so gladThey were delicious and we convinced the team to try them. As far as I we arrived at the castle I already wanted toI did it. Ive made lifelong friends at Skiboknow they all survived Many things have changed since the beginning become a member. The old Clubhouse wasand were still just as close 25 years on. and I hope to be a member for some more years at this wonderful place.'