Dracula stayed here…

Well, not quite the vampiric Count himself but the next best thing — the man whose imagination spawned the Lord of the Undead!

Dracula author Bram Stoker

Dracula author Bram Stoker, above, was a guest at The Garden Arms in July, 1896, the year before his Gothic masterpiece was published.

Stoker’s great-grand nephew Dacre Stoker, who manages the Bram Stoker estate, said: “There is a very good chance that a few pages of his famous novel were written there.”

Dacre Stoker at The Gardenstown Arms

Dacre, above, visited The Garden Arms in April 2019 while promoting his own prequel (Dracul) to Dracula. He said: “I visited this lovely hotel myself. It was a great honour to make a presentation about Bram and his writing at a location where he actually stayed.”

Bram Stoker first came to Aberdeenshire in 1893 and continued to visit for best part of 20 years until his death in 1912. The Count’s creator is known to have taken inspiration for Dracula from Slains Castle at Cruden Bay. His 1902 novel, The Mystery of the Sea, references Garden[s]town.

To hear more about Bram’s time at The Garden Arms, listen to BBC Radio presenter Roberto Peronne’s interview with Derek (starts 1:12).

If you’re at all nervous about staying, we can supply a bulb of garlic to ward off the Count…


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