Afternoon tea at Rufflets
Afternoon tea at Rufflets

Rufflets is an idyllic sanctuary for relaxing short breaks

In family ownership for over 68 years, Rufflets is set in ten acres of stunning gardens and mature woodland in St Andrews.

Providing an idyllic sanctuary for relaxing short breaks, a base from which to explore the historic town of St Andrews and the East Neuk, and the perfect place to reconnect with family and friends, Rufflets is renowned for its welcoming and intimate atmosphere.

Managing partner Marco Truffelli took the helm in March 2020 and, with a pandemic raging, it was a challenging time, but one the organisation was able to manage.

He said: ‘It has been an extraordinary and enduring experience for the business and its team. Since reopening after the first lockdown, we have worked hard to capitalise on the generous space available at Rufflets.

‘The majority of our guests last summer ate breakfast out on the terrace, which is even more Covid secure, as well as being an absolute pleasure when the sun is shining.’

Afternoon tea at Rufflets

There are strict cleaning protocols and high-quality PPE for team members along with a raft of measures to decrease contact points, while maintaining empathetic connections.

Marco said: ‘Guests have been overwhelmingly supportive and appreciative of the measures, commenting that we have achieved a great balance between a quality hotel experience and demonstrating commitment to safety.’

In the lockdowns the hotel has also been working hard to develop extra experiences. These include the expansion of the kitchen garden to include al fresco dining facilities, as well as providing organic home-grown food, the launch of cycle hires for guests to explore the local area and attractions, and yoga classes and retreat programmes in the newly established yoga studio, immersed in Rufflets gardens.

There are also associations with local attractions, including Kingsbarns Distillery, Scotland’s Secret Bunker, V&A Dundee and St Andrews Aquarium, which are now included in short breaks packages.

A selection of whiskies in the bar at Rufflets

Marco is in no doubt about why staycationers would wish to stay at Rufflets.

He said: ‘North East Fife is a world away from the suburban cityscape many visitors live in. Our guests love the beaches, pine forests, quaint fishing villages, medieval-feeling St Andrews, and amazing golf courses, of course!

‘The region is a magnet for foodies – we are blessed with a cornucopia of local artisan producers, and there is a great selection of dining options from Michelin level to street food vendors. Guests love our award-winning wine list and we have hundreds of whiskies and gins to choose from.’

Rufflets is famed for its food

So, the future looks bright, especially with travel restrictions easing.

Marco said: ‘St Andrews is in the very fortunate position of being equally popular with domestic and international visitors, and we are positive about the short and long-term future of this wonderful destination.

‘Demand has leapt up over the last few days, as everyone expected, so we are looking forward to a busy year and a return to some degree of normality over the coming months. We just can’t wait to have our beloved guests back again!’