Originally known as the North British Station Hotel thanks to its location next to the newly built at the time Waverley train station, this majestic, 5* star hotel has changed the entertainment and hospitality scene of Edinburgh since then.

‘The Private Diary of a Victorian Lady’ by Kate Summerscale, in which she details the stories of a lady living in Edinburgh in the 1850s, is one of my favourite social history books. Not just because the story of Isabella Robinson’s life sounds more exciting than mine – a beautiful lady who swung by one party to another in the company of Darwin and other sceptics of the time – but also because I love how it describes Edinburgh in the late 19th century: a place of majestic architecture, fascinating social gatherings and gripping social circles that if you happen to be part of, you’d be living life to its finest! Fifty, short years later and the iconic Balmoral Hotel was built….

But of all the things that the Balmoral Hotel is known, I believe The Balmoral Clock is the greatest one. A 58 m tall, this clock is set three minutes fast to ensure that the people of Edinburgh wouldn’t miss their trains (with the exception of Hogmanay), making it the city’s prominent landmark that it is today.

Last month, we stayed at The Balmoral Hotel after being there for their Winter Sessions  The Deluxe Castle View room, where we stayed, had the most incredible view of Princess Street and up until today I have it imprinted in my head! Upon our arrival, we unwind at the Spa and later on at night we dined at the Brasserie by Alain Roux, aplace of fine dining, stunning interiors and the most knowledgeable staff ,

 “From the concierge desk to the Brasserie everyone was lovely and helpful, they loved what they were doing and it showed a lot!”

The most stunning view of Princess Street from our room!

The views alone warrant a stay at this iconic place. Needless to say we didn’t leave the place for as long as we were there because this window view is just too good to miss out on, don’t you think?

Without further ado, here are some snippets of our stay at the Balmoral Hotel in Edinburgh!

The quintessential Sean Connery poster in the bathroom!

Once we left our things in the room, we quickly went out exploring the premises. As we arrived quite late thanks to an awful traffic just outside Edinburgh, we didn’t have much time left between our arrival and the dinner but we still got some time to relax at the spa and have a look.

When the night came and the city turned its sparkling lights on, we headed to The Brasserie for dinner which was rich, satisfying and a wonderful, unforgettable experience.

Here’s what we ordered from the menu:
STARTERS – Daily catch of oysters (for him) and the Chargrilled octopus with warm crushed potatoes & spicy pili pili herb vinaigrette (for me)
MAINS – Grilled lemon sole served on the bone with seasonal mixed vegetables, sauce vierge (for him) and the Armoricaine monkfish with Camargue wild rice (for me)
DESSERT – we shared (which is so very unlike us as we both suffer from a sweet tooth) the Chestnut Mont-Blanc with blackcurrant coulis. Delightfully delicious!

With not much planned for the night, we retrieved into our room and enjoyed the calmness of the night and the stillness of the city views from our windows. I kept telling myself that ‘this is the life‘ and could not believe how lucky we were to have a room with such gorgeous views across the city – from the Castle to the end of Princess Street we had a view as far as the eye can see!

The next morning we took our time at the Breakfast Bar, which also took place at The Brasserie on the ground floor. The breakfast is a wonderful experience and thankfully not restricted only to the hotel residents, which is amazing considering that you can treat your beloved ones to a luxury 5* hotel breakfast but without paying the cost of spending a night here!

We got a range of fresh seasonal fruit from the salad bar – grapefruit, berries, watermelons, kiwi, pomegranate and figs, to name a few – and an assortment of charcuterie and baked pastries before ordering the Prince full Scottish breakfast for him and the eggs Florentine for me, from the cooked breakfast menu.

Once we were all done, we left our luggage at the concierge and headed towards George Street (one of my most favourite streets in Edinburgh if you ask me!) for a spot of shopping. How very convenient to be staying in, literally, the most central location in the city!

A big thank you to the Balmoral hotel team for having us and treating us like Royals! We will definitely be back very soon.

Anastasia

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