Couple left everything behind to start renovating an old Scottish castle!

They were quite successful in Dubai but quit their job to move to Scotland!

Tips and Crafts

There are times in everyone's life when we question ourselves, reflect on the past and what we want to accomplish in the future. Some people decide to change their life and this is what Stef Burgon and her husband Simon Hunt decided to do! On a trip to Scotland, they fell in love with an old Scottish castle for sale, they suddenly realized what they had to do: move in there and change their lives.

The property was then displayed at £375,000 or $522,000 a particularly attractive price for such a property. The couple decided to make an offer £331,780 – and won! They claim that they paid off the castle with a mortgage, savings and credit.

Courtesy Stef Burgon


However, neither of them had any experience in real estate. In fact, the couple live in Dubai, UAE, where Stef worked as a radio presenter and Simon worked in advertising. But from the beginning, they had the idea to open a luxury hotel there in order to offer visitors passing through the area a unique experience.

Courtesy Simon Hunt


“We made the design so that we've got hidden places to store all our stuff away so literally within a few hours it can be converted from a B&B into being an exclusive holiday let,” explained Simon Hunt to Insider. “All of the castles we've been to, from the outside they look like awesome castles, and then you get inside and you could be in a Marriott hotel," he added. Until the couple found Kilmartin Castle, which they describe as "an original medieval castle," built in 1550 during the reign of Mary Queen of Scots. 

Courtesy Simon Hunt


The first six months of their castle renovation were also documented by directors for the UK Channel 4 TV show 'The Great Hotel Escape' which aired in August 2019.

Once the renovations started, the costs of small changes and buying high-end antiques began to add up.

Courtesy Simon Hunt
Courtesy Simon Hunt


Hunt and Burgon said that although they had set aside a nice sum when they were in Dubai where their wages were particularly comfortable, the complete renovation required significant costs and ended up costing them around 260,000 euros.

Regarding the interior decoration, from the start, the couple wanted to opt for a "rustic luxury" atmosphere that keeps the charm of the place intact while offering all the necessary comfort."We always need to juxtapose that rustic-ness with real wow factor, modern pieces or antiques we've found," said Simon.

Courtesy Simon Hunt
Courtesy Simon Hunt


Today, thanks to the couple's hard work, Kilmartin Castle is undoubtedly one of the best places to stay in Scotland to travel back in time and immerse yourself in the local culture. Congratulations to this couple for having had the courage to change their life to make their dream come true.

Courtesy Simon Hunt
Courtesy Simon Hunt


Would you like to spend a few nights in this castle?