Meet the Team

Stephen Owen, General Manager

A Yorkshireman by birth, Stephen was raised, educated, and has lived in Scotland since the age of four. He is passionate about his adopted country, and believes that Scotland’s countryside, food and hospitality (and sometimes its climate) rival those of any other country in the world.

Having worked in the hospitality industry in Scotland for well over 30 years, Stephen counts organising lunch for The Queen in the World Heritage Village of New Lanark as one of his proudest professional moments.

With his wife, Tiggy, and twin daughters Olivia and Grace, Stephen moved to St Andrews in 2002, and has been living in Crail since 2007. Since then, his mission has been to find all the best beaches, food suppliers, and “hidden gems” in the East Neuk, and he can be relied on to share his discoveries generously with guests.

Heather Rothery, Head Housekeeper

Heather celebrated her 25th year at Rufflets in 2015. Her hands on approach and attention to detail ensures that our rooms are cleaned and maintained to a four star standard. Heather and her dedicated team were awarded “Best Housekeeping Hotel of the Year” in the 2005 Hotel Review Scotland awards. So it’s not just about plumping pillows and tucking Rufus into bed!

Gavin Aitken, Food and Beverage Manager

Guests who want to improve their wine and whisky knowledge (with a little bit of practical experience) should head for Gavin Aitken, our Food and Beverage Manager. Gavin often arranges whisky tasting evenings for individuals or small groups from our selection of over 100 malts and is also responsible for selecting wines for our extensive wine list. Gavin is an able and keen golfer, which is that other conversation at the bar!

Craig McPherson, Deputy General Manager

Craig McPherson joined the team in October 2005, having spent the previous 15 years with the Old Course Hotel in St Andrews. Craig brings a wealth of experience of hotels and the Scottish golf scene. Very much a local to the town, he is the fount of all knowledge when it comes to getting the best table reservations in town, or a last minute tee time on the Links Courses. Regrettably, his own handicap is not as low as it should be, so he is yet to make the hotel golf team!

Grant MacNicol, Head Chef

Grant MacNicol, originally from the north East of Scotland, joined Rufflets as Head Chef in July 2014.

Starting in the hotel industry as a young lad in the mid 1990’s, he quickly established himself as one of the up and coming chefs currently working in Scotland. In 2007 he was awarded Young Scottish Chef of the Year and also became Young Highlands & Islands Ambassador.

He has two passions in life – food and fast cars!