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The Hill House - Hellinsborough


Mackintosh's Hill House under its protective canopy
Mackintosh's Hill House under its protective canopy

A gifted architect and innovative stylist, Charles Rennie Mackintosh was one of two outstanding designers that heavily influenced the development of the Art Deco Style, the other being Josef Hoffmann. Mackintosh based in Glasgow and Hoffmann in Vienna regularly corresponded and visited each another.


Mackintosh was in fact one of the ‘Glasgow Four’ designers, the others being his wife Margaret Mcdonald, Margaret’s sister Frances Macdonald and Frances’ husband Herbert MacNair.


The Hill House is arguably Mackintosh’s most famous work after the Glasgow School of Art which was sadly destroyed by fire in 2018. We visited the Hill House whilst on Holiday next to Loch Lomond. It's just a short drive over the hill, A818, to Helensburgh and the National Trust for Scotland owned property is just off Kennedy Drive as you come into the town.

Rear of the Hill House form the canopy
Rear of the Hill House form the canopy

The first thing you can't help but notice is the giant canopy over the property! Mackintosh went with Portland Cement harl for the exterior finish of the house, which unfortunately isn't as resilient as traditional lime harl. The choice of finish meant the building was gradually being destroyed by the Scottish weather and it was in a precarious state before the canopy was erected.


As well as protecting the building, the temporary canopy gives you the unique opportunity to view the Hill House from above and from pretty much any conceivable angle, something our kids particularly enjoyed.


Move to the inside of the house and the first thing we noticed is just how super friendly, helpful and knowledgeable the staff were. From the entrance you can walk round the whole house taking in all of the beautifully designed fixtures and fittings, which being Mackintosh have a distinctly early Art Deco (and often Art Nouveau) look to them.


In fact, everywhere you look you'll find amazing unique design. We've added a collage of some of the best items for you to enjoy below...




To be continued…

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