One of the attractions of these tower houses is their internal layout. Since the number of rooms on each floor is limited by the small ground area, rooms tend to be located in order of practical priority from the bottom up. Hence the kitchen and its attendant offices occupy the ground floor, the main reception rooms are on the first floor and the bedrooms on the floors above. In some respects tower houses imitate townhouses, with the same benefits of vertical plumbing and heat rising to warm the upper rooms.
The climate in Scotland is kind in summer but winter brings short days and long evenings. It also brings the most wonderful evening light, as those who know Scotland will attest; this streams through the deep castle windows flooding the interior with light as if in a theatre.
It is easy to overdecorate rooms like these. The architecture is so powerful and the furniture and pictures so arresting that soft furnishings and curtains, though they should be complementary, are not central to creating a balanced interior. They should not fight for attention in surroundings of this quality.
The house is an architectural gem, of ideal size and scale, in a perfect setting and, nearly 400 years on, still as suitable for family occupation as when it was built - nonwithstanding the departure of the prisoners and the arrival of the lift.