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Calum Ross

Owner, Loch Melfort Hotel & Board Member at Highlands and Islands Enterprise

  • What was your favourite subject at school?

Geography I think (feels like a long time ago). I particularly enjoyed the aspects of it that studied our outdoor environment in Scotland. Struck a chord with my interests in hillwalking and backpacking at that time.

  • What was your first job?

Part-time Fruit & Veg assistant (age 14) at an Asda superstore – topping up the shelves and the odd game of ‘potato football’ behind the scenes. Really liked being part of a team and also interacting with customers.

  • Which is your favourite restaurant /hotel?

Loch Melfort Hotel? Ok that would be a biased answer….two favourite restaurants. Café Fish, Tobermory and Kilberry Inn, Kintyre – can’t beat either of them for wonderful freshly landed or local produce and great service.

  • How do you inspire your team

There isn’t a job or task in the business that I haven’t done over the years and delivered with the same level of enthusiasm and commitment that we ask all our team members to show, so principally leading by example. Everything is about the guest experience. It’s also been about developing and empowering a team and then getting out of the way to let them do what they do best.

  • Which person in hospitality have you most admired / inspired you?

Too many to mention or single out really. From a chef point of view Willie Pike – his artistry and craftsmanship are second to none. And from a hotel perspective, Peter Taylor  – quiet and unassuming but a huge influence on the industry generally.

  • How do you manage your stress levels?

Probably not very well…take a deep breath and find a window or get outside to emerge myself in our wonder views and location.

  • Instagram, Twitter or Facebook – and why?

Personally mainly facebook – it’s a great platform which has allowed me to stay connected to family, friends and ex-colleagues all over the world, to a level that I would never otherwise have had time to maintain.

  • If you had not gone into hospitality, where do you
    think you would be now?

Well having started my career working in a bank for a couple of years, I suppose I could have ended up some where in the world of financial services. However as I spent the next 23 years supplying food & beverage to the hospitality sector, before becoming an owner/operator 15 years ago, I think I was always destined to work in this amazing industry.

  • What did you do on your last days off?

Not sure that as an owner/operator of an independent business like ours and in this electronic age, there is such a thing….went to Tobermory a couple of weeks ago. My nearly 12 year old son was competing in a Piping competition in the local MOD. It was a glorious day, so headed over to Calgary beach and spent the afternoon there too.

  • What do you do to relax, to support your wellbeing?

Long walks with the dogs every morning along the coastline from our property provide an opportunity to re-connect with the sea, landscape and wildlife which is a great leveller for me. Time with my wife and family very important too. And music, playing fiddle & viola with friends at our and other local music nights regularly is really important.