Works Starts on Ptarmigan building at Cairngorm

The building at the top of the Scottish ski resort includes the UK’s highest restaurant, as well as a shop, exhibition space and viewing platforms. It  has been closed to the public since the funicular was taken out of service in 2018.

Refurbishment of the Ptarmigan building on the Cairngorm plateau is underway after owner Highlands and Islands Enterprise, HIE, approved investment of up to £780,000.

Operating company, Cairngorm Mountain (Scotland) Limited (CMSL), has commissioned Beauly-based Simpson Builders Ltd to carry out the first phase of the upgrading works.

The aim is to meet the needs of the anticipated increase in visitor numbers following the reopening of the funicular next year.

It was recently announced that the funicular would not be opening in time for this coming winter’s ski season as we reported earlier on PlanetSKI:

Cairngorm Funicular out of Action this Winter

Image c/o Cairngorm Mountain

Image c/o Cairngorm Mountain

The building’s viewing terrace will be made accessible to visitors on arrival.

There will be improvements to the catering areas including new fixtures and fittings, and redesigned dining, servery and bar areas.

The exhibition area will be upgraded with 3D technology offering an interactive and interpretive experience. It will include 270-degree panoramas so visitors can ‘see’ the landscape even when it’s obscured by conditions.

The space will be adaptable for bespoke functions, such as educational group visits, live sporting events, and scheduled exhibitions.

Over the next three years the upgraded building is expected to create more than 12 full time posts.

“The refurbishment of the Ptarmigan building has been on the cards for a long time and is an essential part of our wider work to continually improve the visitor experience at Cairngorm,” said the interim chief executive of CMSL, Susan Smith.

“Along with the reopening of the funicular this will help reposition Cairngorm as one of Strathspey’s major visitor attractions and an important part of the area’s broader tourism offering.

“It will encourage more people to come here and to stay longer; something that will also benefit other businesses in the region.

“We are very pleased to be moving forward with the project and look forward to working with Simpsons over the next few months.”

CMSL is aiming to source materials and artwork locally wherever possible, as well as food and drink supplies once the building has reopened.

The refurbishment started this week and due to be completed around the end of the year.

The Top Station and the Ptarmigan Restaurant at the CairnGorm Mountain ski area, Highlands of Scotland…Picture Credit : Tim Winterburn /HIE

Scottish Highlands

Scottish Highlands. Image credit – © PlanetSKI