Revel in the Magic
Our mission is led by our core values: compassion, innovation, transformation, and sustainability
We create exceptional experiences for our guests without causing harm to our environment. Taking a holistic approach to hosting life-changing gatherings, we aspire to leaving a lasting impression on every guest without leaving one on our planet.
The Dunskey Experience ensures you are well-nourished in all aspects of your stay. There are no “one size fits all” packages found here and we certainly don’t believe in hosting ordinary fetes. Upon departure, you’re left with life-long memories of the time you spent here with loved ones.
At Dunskey, we know it takes more effort now than ever before to get everyone together in the same place. That’s why when you’re here, we do our best to make time disappear, pressing pause so you can enjoy each other’s company for just a little while longer.
Meet Our Loyal Team
Generations of Love
Dunskey Estate has been in the Orr Ewing family since 1900, when they acquired the land from a great uncle. Since then, the property has undergone renovations and improvements to create the ultimate private venue.
In 2017, for the first time in the estate’s history, the owners opened their doors to guests in the hopes that they too would experience the splendour found at Dunskey.
1648: Dunskey, then known as the Portree Estate, was acquired by the Rev. James Blair, the newly appointed Minister for Portpatrick.
Late 17th Century: Dunskey Castle was stripped of dressed stone and timber. This was stored at Killantringan and then incorporated into the new Dunskey House.
1770: Jean Blair of Dunskey marries James Hunter, with her husband assuming the Blair surname.
1777: James Hunter Blair embarks on a major programme of improvements, virtually rebuilding Portpatrick and the harbour.
1814: Map prepared for James H. Blair shows Dunskey House, Walled Garden, Slip Garden, and nursery grounds and drives.
1854: Installation of the first telegraph link to Ireland. The cable comes ashore at the foot of Dunskey Glen where two hexagonal huts were built to accommodate the equipment and the telegraph men.
1890’s: Mackenzie & Moncur Glasshouses installed.
1900: Estate bought by Charles Lindsay Orr Ewing and his wife Lady Augusta Boyle, niece of Abbot David Hunter Blair.
1901: Current Dunskey House built to a design by James Kennedy Hunter at a cost of £30,000.
1903: Charles Orr Ewing dies in the almost complete new house. Ownership of the estate passes to Edward Orr Ewing, his oldest son.
1904: Mass planting of Rhododendrons along with other exotic trees and shrubs through pleasure grounds and along drives.
1914: Outbreak of war signals the end of the golden age of British gardens and Dunskey is no exception. The Walled Garden remains in fruit and vegetable production well into the 1960’s.
1930: Edward Orr Ewing dies of septicaemia after a rugby accident. David Orr Ewing, a naval captain, inherits the property. On his return to Dunskey, David found the estate in a poor state of repair. Saddled by inheritance tax debts, he was forced to sell much of the land including the hunting lodge, Knockinaam.
1964: David Orr Ewing dies and Dunskey is inherited by his first son Edward Orr Ewing.
1997: Work begins on rejuvenating the garden, which is closed to the public during repairs.
2001: The Walled Garden re-opens to the public.
2003: The maze is planted.
2015: Alastair and Anne Orr Ewing arrive at Dunskey.
2017: Dunskey Estate becomes a private venue.