It may seem like a strange career change, but for Rod and Adelle Sim, the move from driving military tanks to looking after bridal parties, is one they’ve been more than happy to make. In fact, tanks and weddings have been inextricably linked to the couple since Rod’s proposal to Adelle back in 2012- when he popped the question on top of a tank in front of the audience at the 2012 Glamis Proms! He then fired the gun to the 1812 overture at the fireworks display! Even at their wedding, Rod, who, unsurprisingly runs a military tank driving experience company, was pictured on top of one of his tanks.
The couple, from Errol in the Carse of Gowrie, still offer the public the opportunity to drive a tank, but are now behind a new luxury lettings, weddings, and investment resort, Silverwood, at Inchcoonans, just outside Errol, which has just joined the marketplace.
Situated on a twenty acre plot, which Rod initially purchased a few years ago with the intention of creating a glamping site with outdoor activities, the land has now been transformed over a four year period, to become a luxury destination offering nineteen luxury bespoke lodges, with its own luxury Bistro coming in the Spring.
It was the couple’s own wedding, at nearby venue, Errol Park, a newly launched wedding venue at the time, that prompted the change of heart for Rod and Adelle, as they realised the land could have another, more lucrative use, offering luxury lodges and exclusive use weddings, rather than glamping.
“Errol Park was stunning, and we had a truly amazing day, but there wasn’t enough accommodation for all our guests who were coming to the wedding, “said Rod. “We realised that there was a distinct lack of good quality accommodation in the whole area. Our guests had to end up staying in various places some distance away, and were then bussed to the venue, which was costly and not ideal.”
“Like many couples nowadays, we wanted our wedding to be a celebration covering several days, with gatherings before and after the actual wedding. It turned out that there were another three top wedding venues near us at Silverwood – it’s a radius with us at the centre,” said Adelle Sim.
“The idea of a luxury resort offering superb self catering accommodation for both short breaks and exclusive use weddings started to form in our minds. It offered us another business opportunity, in a growing sector, that we could run together, and seemed to offer us more potential than glamping,” she said.
“As we had found with our wedding, where you stay as a guest is all part of the overall experience- our guests wanted to kick back and enjoy the whole weekend. We knew our land enjoyed a beautiful setting here in the Carse of Gowrie, it was tranquil with its own wildlife pond, yet only minutes from both Dundee and Perth,” said Rod. “It was just too good an opportunity to miss.”
“For us, the icing on the cake was to secure planning permission for our very own Bistro, which will offer delicious food created with locally sourced ingredients,” said Adelle. “It will have the capacity to hold one hundred people for weddings and events, and will be open to non residents, proving a pleasant venue in which to sit and enjoy a meal whilst looking out over the wildlife pond,” said Adelle.
It’s taken Rod and Adelle four years of “military precision style” planning to bring Silverwood to the market, with the Bistro due to open next year, and a scheme now in place to offer additional lodges for investment. They are also planning to host larger weddings themselves by investing in their own bespoke Marquee.
“We think we have got the look and feel of the lodges just right,” said Adelle. “We didn’t want to have hot tubs which takes ages to heat up, and can be difficult to clean, and so we have our spa lodges as we call them, with large indoor spa baths, with access out to a decked terrace. We have lodges suitable for the family market, sleeping six, with comfy sofas, widescreen TV’s and double walk in showers, and, our Hideaway Lodge, which is a luxurious retreat for four, perhaps two couples staying together.”.
Finished Rod Sim: “Recent reports suggest that luxury resort parks are very vibrant at the moment, and we would certainly agree, with a number of investors currently waiting to sign missives on lodge sales as managed financial investments with a great return.”
“We won’t be complacent though, and will be building on wedding business over the winter, looking forward to the launch of the Bistro,” said Rod. “The recent opening of the V&A in Dundee can only be good for local trade too, as clearly there is going to be a surge in demand for local accommodation, of which we’re well placed to take full advantage.”