An imposing Victorian mansion in Fife that belonged to one of Scotland’s most famous whisky dynasties has been put up for sale.
Eden Mansion near St Andrews has a £1.75 million price tag, making it one of the most expensive residential properties currently for sale in Scotland.
The house itself, which overlooks the Eden Estuary towards the iconic Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews, was built by the Haig family who also owned a distillery in nearby Guardbridge, as well as most of the surrounding farmland.
The family is renowned as Scotland’s oldest whisky distillers, with its most notable member being the 1st Earl Field Marshal Douglas Haig, who played a commanding role during World War One.
Savills, who are acting as marketing agents for the property which dates from 1860, has described Eden Mansion as a “historic and exceptional country house” which is built for “luxurious living and entertaining in a grand style”.
“The present owners have carried out a major refurbishment programme over the last four years and have renovated the property to a very high specification to create the stunning country house and gardens that can be seen today,” the agents added.
“They have fully renovated the house both inside and out whilst preserving and enhancing its period charm with tasteful modern comforts which blend seamlessly to create a lavish yet authentic Scottish home.”
Those willing to part with the £1.75 million asking price will be purchasing eight bedrooms, all with en suite bathrooms, seven reception rooms, a Clive Christian kitchen, a two bedroom lodge built in the 1890s, a stable yard and four car garage.
The property also includes 5.3 acres of enclosed grounds, a huge south-facing walled garden and a summer house.
In more recent years, the house was rumoured to be a possible residence for Prince William and his then girlfriend Kate Middleton while they were studying at St Andrews University, as they sought to move out of student accommodation in the town to a more secluded location.
However, they settled on the more humble option of a cottage on the Strathtyrum Estate.
The Haigs – A history
Dating from 1860, the house was built as the primary residence of the Haig
family near St Andrews.
Haig whisky claims to be the oldest in the world but the family firm, John Haig and Co, was founded in the mid-18th Century. Based at Cameronbridge in Fife, its grain whisky distillery was revolutionary and by the 20th Century it was producing hundreds of thousands of gallons per year, swelling the family coffers and creating a lasting dynasty.
Eden Mansion’s most famous owner, the 1st Earl Field Marshall, Douglas Haig, did not enter the family business.
During the First World War he commanded the British Expeditionary Force on the Western Front from late 1915 until the end of the war.
In 1919, John Haig and Co was acquired by the Distillers Company Ltd – a cooperative which it had helped establish 40 years earlier – which, itself, morphed into Diageo.
The Haig name lives on through the Haig Club single grain whisky, launched in 2014 by David Beckham.