The Story So Far

Rarely will you ever find a building with such a rich heritage. Nor will you often see a home with such quality and comfort built into every last detail. To find both in one home is simply unheard of.

Balmule House has roots – and features – that stretch back for over 500 years, yet it also has an interior designed and crafted with every modern convenience. So while the solid stone walls of this Fife tower house hold the history of every past resident, this is no museum piece. This is a living, breathing home for you to enjoy.

Over the years and from one generation to the next, every owner has lent their own personality and personal touches to the character of the building, writing their own chapter in the story of Balmule.

Balmule Gardens

Once, Balmule stood to protect its owners against 15th century hostility. As centuries passed by, new owners gave the house new form and function – each adding their own personality and their own history.

It was built for one of Fife’s most prominent families – the Wardlaws, who had been members of King Malcolm’s court in the 12th century and had played a key role in establishing St Andrew’s University in the 15th century. Balmule House was passed through the generations before being sold on as the Wardlaws’ fortunes faded.

James Alexander, who bought the house in 1837, was no doubt grateful for the stout walls, when cloth workers marched on the house from Dunfermline, rioted and set a fire that would surely have destroyed a lesser construction. That didn’t stop him making his own additions, and he added two new wings either side of the original tower – giving the house a shape much closer to the one we see today.

Since the Alexander family sold on the house in 1950, the house has had several owners, from a textiles manufacturing company to the rock band Big Country’s lead singer – who used one of the outbuildings as a recording studio.

Today’s owner, has brought the house into the 21st century, with a programme of renovation work that brings out original features in their former glory – against a backdrop of modern technology, high-quality finish and absolute comfort.

The Transformation

Look on Balmule House and you’ll see a fixed and firm structure, sound and solid in construction. But look at its 500 year history and you’ll see a building that has grown with time, changing with the landscape and the generations of residents.

From the original tower house, extra wings have been added and the defensive measures phased out. Many rooms have changed in function and in form, while outbuildings have been added, gardens constructed and old features reconditioned.

Balmule’s most recent owner, who bought the house in 2008, has been hard at work bringing a unrivalled standard of modern luxury to the property – with no expense spared on the refurbishment and modernisations.

Outside, the roof has been completely reassembled – every slate has been removed and reseated or replaced, the chimney pots have been replaced and an innovative heat trace system has been installed – preventing any damaging build-up of snow or ice. The stonework has been sand-blasted and repointed, and 78 windows have been removed, repainted, reweighted and reinstalled.

Inside, all the rewiring, replumbing and replastering is only the beginning. These fundamental aspects have been brought up to the highest standards, but it’s the innovation and luxury that catches the eye – from the 4 oven AGA in the kitchen and underfloor heating in the main bathrooms, to the state-of-the-art temperature control system and cat-5 cabling throughout.

The character and craft of the 500 year history remains, but today this is a home that offers cutting-edge convenience and ultimate comfort.

Balmule House Transformation

The House

Walk around Balmule and you’ll see the history. You’ll feel the comfort. You’ll discover the quality. And you’ll hear the peace and tranquillity.

Balmule At Night

Step Inside

When you approach the house up the sweeping, tree-lined drive, you’ll get an immediate sense of Balmule’s tranquillity, set among the rolling Fife landscape.

When you step into the house, through the arched porch, across the tiled vestibule and into the central hall, you’ll get a sense of Balmule’s incredible heritage.

Make Yourself Comfortable

From the Drawing Room – the largest room in the house – you can look out through large bay windows upon the gardens and grounds, while the Sitting Room – originally built as the Solar, or living quarters – offers a homely touch of comfort and beautiful fireplace to relax by.

Make Dinner A Feast

Come into the Kitchen, and you’ll see that you have more than you need to make a meal – you’ll have everything needed to create a feast. In a perfect example of a country kitchen, you’ll find a four-oven AGA, a wealth of storage space and an expanse of preparation areas.

Off the kitchen, what was once the house’s buttery (so called because of the butts, or barrels of provisions), is now a Utility Room, while the old bottlery is now a Store off the Central Dining Hall and the Butler’s Pantry is an ideal addition when it comes to serving at dinner parties.

Entertain Friends

For the sunnier days, the Garden Room has access to the Walled Garden through French doors, while the Wine Cellar with fitted bins can hold more than 400 bottles – plenty for a summer garden party.

And So To Bed

Today, you’ll find the main sleeping quarters up the sweeping staircase and within the Master Suite. There, in addition to the Master Bedroom, you’ll find a Dressing Room with a wall dedicated to hanging rails and drawers, and an expansive Master Bathroom, with open shower and central bath. It even boasts its own Pantry.

The rest of the first floor is no less impressive. Across the hall, you’ll find another three bedrooms, two more bathrooms and a shower room.

If you take the stairs to the second floor, you’ll find plenty of room for guests and visitors to stay, with four additional bedrooms, three bathrooms and an extra kitchen and sitting room – meaning the whole second floor is a self-contained apartment.

You can explore our bedrooms here.

Stretch Your Legs

With grounds that stretch for 30 acres, there is plenty of space to explore and enjoy. Step out of the front door and you’ll enjoy a stunning view across the rolling Fife landscape to Loch Fitty. You can follow the trails to the woodlands, or fish the stream, without ever leaving the estate.

For a gentler stroll, the Walled Garden offers paved terraces, linking the flower-beds and greenhouses, with an abundance of space for enjoying the best of Scottish weather.

Head for the corner of the grounds and you’ll find the outbuildings – the Coach House, Stables and the old Mill.

The Final Word

It is remote, but not far away. It is ancient, but modern. It is refined and distinctive, but it’s homely and comfortable.

There are hundreds of years of history within its walls, yet this is not a visitor attraction. It’s a home for you to enjoy.