Dare you enter? Dare you go in?
That is what Tau Trent is asking us as he embarks on what he describes as the best idea he has yet to attract visitors to stay at his isolated Bed and Breakfast.
Mr Trent, 67, Westray has a large house which some might term ‘dilapidated’ but the more discerning amongst us would describe it as ‘characterful’. El Hocico dates as far back as 1952 and Tau has retained all the original features. The bedrooms are just as they were when his mother was alive and Tau wants to keep them like that as a lasting tribute to that formidable woman.
To encourage more guests Tau Trent has added an unique sense of adventure to their visit. El Hocico is not any old B&B as it boasts the attraction of being haunted. But even the ghosts who linger on in the ancient villa are not the normal spirits that you would expect to find. The mansion of El Hocico is haunted by the most frightening part of any ethereal entity – the nasus region.
Visitors who have dared to stay the night have been awoken with strange snifflings and snufflings from within the very walls themselves. Unable to bear the sounds many run screaming from their rooms only to be met by a barrage of white hankies wafting across the hallways and stairways preventing their escape.
The Orkney News caught up with one of Tau’s latest guests, Mrs Flett McGinty,73, who had taken up her sister’s offer of a dare to stay at El Hocico.
“I was terrified,” confessed Mrs McGinty, “ And then Tau explained that it was just the last remains of his ancestors who had all died in the influenza epidemic of 1958. Once I realised this I was fine and decided to stay on. Also Tau refused to refund any of my money.”
Not one to sniff at a profit Tau Trent is planning to expand the business and will be running midnight smelling activities to introduce his guests to the enhanced sensory experience of utilising their nasal cavities to their full potential. Visitors will be invited out to immerse themselves in the aromatic night air of summer in Westray. An experience we all agree will never leave them.
Reporter: Fergus Graemsay