The Balmoral Hotel
What We Love
- Kilted doorman and grand entrance make a stellar first impression
- Attentive yet unfussy staff deals adroitly with everyone: celebrities, tourists and the passing public
- Unfussy guestrooms give you a feel for Edinburgh’s history, plus restful ambience
What To Know
- Functions and Palm Court rendezvous bring a constant flow of people
- No tea or coffeemaking facilities in guestrooms — room service only
- J.K. Rowling finished writing the Harry Potter series here and now has a suite named after her
- Room Service
A baronial Edwardian pile opened in 1902, with gorgeous architectural details — clock tower and mini-turrets — presiding over Princes Street. Pale marble, white pillars and orchids in the lobby welcome guests with understated class and relaxed elan. Throughout the hotel old and new are combined tastefully.
Bed and Bath
Decor is unflashy and contemporary, with light walls complementing high-quality textured fabrics, including damasks and plaids. Historic prints, landscape photographs and botanical paintings further elaborate the Scots theme. There are 188 guestrooms and suites, many of which have been refurbished in stages in recent years. Expect spacious rooms with high ceilings and marble bathrooms, especially the suites. The 180-square-foot J.K. Rowling Suite, where the writer finished the Harry Potter series in 2007, has turret alcove views, her writing desk and a marble bust of Greek god Hermes.
The cavernous Palm Court retains the opulence of the Edwardian Age with refined harp music — it’s a popular spot for afternoon tea, champagne and cocktails. Choose from the chic Art Deco brasserie Hadrian’s — designed by Olga Polizzi — or the refined Michelin-starred Number One. Book ahead for a corner banquette and a tasting menu experience amid reimagined Edwardian sophistication. Next to the gym is the Balmoral Spa, which has a Finnish sauna, Turkish steam room, 15-meter pool and treatments.
In the Area
The location is a shopper’s dream. Historic department store Jenners is nearby, as are the New Town’s upscale and speciality boutiques on and around George Street and St. Andrew Square, including Harvey Nichols and quirky Hannah Zakari. For a slice of Victorian splendor and Edinburgh atmosphere, pop in for a pint at the Café Royal circle bar, and perhaps a seafood platter at the adjoining Oyster Bar restaurant. On the way to the Old Town and Royal Mile, visit the Princes Street Gardens, the National Galleries of Scotland and the National Museum of Scotland. Be adventurous and explore leafy Stockbridge along the Water of Leith for its independent shops and galleries — and herons.
How to Get There
Nice hotel, traditional in Edinburgh, went for business purposes.
Excellent location and views of the castle.
The room were nice, but bathroom, specially bathtube wrongly designed, as there was a big distance to the floor when getting out, and no support to hold which are really dangerous.
Breakfast was ok, but don-t know if would be paying the rates they charge again.
Best location for a stay in the city, Everything about the hotel was as expected. Old world charm and service. I would absolutely recommend staying here and look forward to returning. The meet and greet was superb.
Booked thru American Express Fine Hotels and paid over 940 a night for a suite. No upgrade available and people checking in could pay and additional $$$$ for upgrade...I was never offered. Beware as American Express holder
Otherwise the service from staff was good....probably would think hard to go there again...our view was a window that you laid down on the floor to see the top of the rail station....does that sound like a premium room?
Having traveled from Yorkshire to Edinburgh to give a friend suffering from cancer a dat trip out.we called into this hotel to get a drink.first I was not told that a £4 service charge was levied on my bill,and then getting back and checking my account I find that I was charged £36 for 4 half pints of shandy.the hotel is a comfortable place to relax and very pleasant,but I need to warn my readers to check your bill,unfortunately I did not and it cost me dear.also the hotel by law must tell you that there is a service charge,and you have the rights to say no.be warned.
This was our first visit to Scotland. I think the Balmoral was my favorite hotel I have ever stayed at- in front of even The Breakers in Palm Beach, FL, US and The Drake in Chicago IL, US. I just cannot say enough. We were surrounded by staff when our taxi drove up. We did not touch our bags and were escorted to reception. The hotel was elegant, beautiful and historic. I loved the staff's uniforms, especially the men in kilts!
Our room was lovely and cool. The bathroom had nice amenities including a towel warmer and a special toilet (I think) for cleaning your bum. (I am an American-I had never seen one before and had to figure out what it was! I think I got it right)
The staff were attentive and so receptive. Room service was delicious for breakfast as was the dining room breakfast. We enjoyed the Scotch Bar with over 400 kinds of Scotch. Our first day, fresh Scottish strawberries were brought to our room. The concierges were so helpful and someone was always available. I saw the Palm Room. I wish we had time to do the high tea there. The spa and pool looked lovely as well. I did not want to leave and hope to come back someday! If you get a chance to stay here, do so! I don't think you will be disappointed!