Andrew Smith is Director of Country House Sales and leads Rettie’s East Lothian sales team. He has sold houses throughout the county for thirty years. Here is a peek into Andrew's East Lothian and some local recommendations.
I have lived in East Lothian for 23 years and always feel fortunate about the variety of things to do and amenities on offer. There is something for everyone in East Lothian, whether that is the type of house they are looking for, the location of that house (seaside town, village or country home), leisure activities, and cultural events.
There are a multitude of things to do including renowned golf courses, horse riding, kite surfing in Aberlady Bay, and countless places to go for wonderful countryside walks. There are so many fantastic places to take your dog for a walk on the beach or in the hills. There are great transport links into Edinburgh by road and rail, which is a real bonus for commuting into work while reducing the carbon footprint. All of this, however, pales in comparison to the friends you make in the county.
I’ve amassed lots of favourite local business and restaurants over the years. In Haddington, I always enjoy The Loft and you can find just about anything you’re looking for in J S Mains, which is a traditional ironmonger and outdoor shop. They sell anything and everything from a single screw to a horse saddle! In North Berwick, Greens & Blues is a great art gallery and you can stop in at Steampunk for properly roasted coffee. The traditional ice cream at Luca’s in Musselburgh is delicious. I shop at Gannon Sports in Gullane, a long-established sports shop and racquet specialist, whenever I need sports gear.
My favourite restaurants are all places with convivial atmospheres along with good service and food. I like venues that pride themselves on a friendly environment with a relaxing and pleasant space that serve consistently high-quality food. There are so many places to patronise in the county, but my favourites are The Main Course in Gullane, The Goblin Ha’ in Gifford, The Waterside in Haddington, and the Herringbone in North Berwick.
An ideal long weekend in my East Lothian, weather allowing, would be as follows. On Friday after work, I’d relax in the garden with a nice glass of wine ahead of a BBQ with friends. I would start Saturday off by taking my dog for a walk around the fields or down to the beach for a swim. I might pass the afternoon by playing a round of golf and then going out for dinner with friends at one of my favourite restaurants. Sunday morning I’d do a bit of gardening and cut the grass, followed by Sunday lunch with all the family. Later in the afternoon we might head to the cinema at Fort Kinnaird or go into Edinburgh to enjoy one of the cultural events on all year round. On a Bank Holiday Monday, I’d enjoy another walk in the countryside and treat myself to another round of golf before relaxing at home and prepare for the working week ahead.