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“Stayed here for my wedding trip, and could not have been treated better.”
Review of The Balmoral Hotel

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The Balmoral Hotel
Ranked #10 of 148 Hotels in Edinburgh
Certificate of Excellence
Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
8 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Stayed here for my wedding trip, and could not have been treated better.”
Reviewed 13 May 2010

My wife and I chose the Balmoral Hotel as our "base of operations" for our brief wedding trip to Scotland in September of last year. We had originally planned to be married in Santorini, Greece, but the Greek authorities put up too many roadblocks; as such, we had to sort of scramble a bit to put together a trip to Edinburgh, which was also a finalist for us (so no need to feel bad for us for having to "fall back" on Scotland!) I mention all this because the expediency with which we were required to do our planning left us relying very heavily on the concierge at the Balmoral to assist us in finding a photographer, a florist, hair dresser, and a few other very important arrangements. Joseph Winders is the head concierge there, and I can say without hyperbole that he is the most important man you need to communicate with before you go to Edinburgh. He arranged almost everything for us, or helped us to make the arrangements ourselves. And once we were actually there, the staff took very good care of us, particularly on our big day. A staffer on the concierge team was making sure that everything was delivered timely (flowers, etc); she would ask if we needed anything, to help things go smoothly. When we came down to the lobby, they ordered (and payed for) a cab to take us to the registrar. One of the ladies rushed from behind the counter to hug my wife and tell her how beautiful she looked (we were there alone, so this meant a lot to us). Oh, and on the first night while we were napping the staff wheeled in a top-notch bottle of champagne for congratulations on the coming nuptials.

Now, about the room (it's hard to stop fawning over the staff, they were so incredible). The room we had was much larger than I was expecting, and we had a perfect view of the castle. The bed was extremely comfortable, and the room was beautiful and clean. I will attach some photos when I dig them up, but I think "charming" is a good summary term. Oh, and the location could not be more perfect - easy walk to both Old Town and New Town.

I will briefly mention the restaurant, but it really deserves a whole review on its own. The restaurant is called Number One. My wife and I had our wedding night dinner at the restaurant, and it was one of the most fabulous meals of our entire lives. We had the tasting menu, which - no exaggeration - went on for about 4 hours. Course after course of heaven was brought out, and a sommelier would bring us a wine to pair with the food for each course (yeah, we were a little tipsy afterword!) They even made us a special desert slate for congratulations. Don't miss this restaurant even if you decide to stay elsewhere in Edinburgh.

I will mention that it is not the least expensive hotel you will find in Edinburgh, but to my mind they could charge much more than they do for the service they provide. I'll never forget how they took care of us on this seminal trip for me and my wife. If anyone from the hotel reads this: thank you!!!

  • Stayed September 2009, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank thebigpill
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
balmoraledinburgh, Manager at The Balmoral Hotel, responded to this review, 19 May 2010
Dear Guest

Thank you so much for your wonderful review. We are delighted that you and your wife chose Edinburgh as your wedding venue and I am pleased to read that my colleagues were able to assist you with the preparations for your big day. Your room, one of our Superior Deluxe King rooms, is one of my personal favourites and I am glad that you liked it and enjoyed the magnificent views of this beautiful city.
Having shared your review with my colleagues, they still recall your visit with fondness and were touched by your kind words. We very much hope that you will have the opportunity to return to The Balmoral in the future.

Yours sincerely

Harry Fernandes
Resident Manager
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Balloch, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
7 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 May 2010

The Rocco Forte Group's motto is 'The art of simple luxury" and this sums up our experience at the Balmoral perfectly. We stayed at the hotel at the beginning of May and were allocated a lovely room on the 5th floor, overlooking the North Bridge. From the minute we entered the hotel, the attention to detail and customer service was immediately apparent. Each and every member of staff we encountered could not be more helpful, and it was this that really set our experience at the Balmoral ahead of other hotels, such as those in the Hotel du Vin chain, which can in some cases be more style over substance. The Balmoral still retains its old-world charm and is very understated - the art of simple luxury however is evident in the linens, finishings, food, the aforementioned service....
So, what would I recommend if you're staying at the Balmoral? High tea in Palm Court - but book in advance, it's busy at the weekends; a spa treatment (a great way to relax); cocktails in the bar (very imaginative list).
The beds are very comfortable and the late check-out of 12pm is a luxury in itself!

  • Stayed May 2010, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Eileen73
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei Darussalam
Level Contributor
10 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 May 2010

I stayed there with my family for on night and found it absoloutely brilliant. All the staff were so helpful and kind. The hotel itself was immaculately presented. The pool was great. The pool even had a bar where you could help yourself to drinks from. Because my family has children we had to eat in Hadriens which did lovely food but wasn't so child friendly. We also weren't going to be able to eat there because it was fully booked. Luckily my eldest son was ill so the staff managed to get us into the restaurant. The rooms were beautifully finished and the beds were extremely comfy. On the downside the bathrooms were a little dated and you could here all the traffic from the road.
Overall this is a great hotel and I would definitely recommend it!

  • Stayed February 2010, travelled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank jammy321
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
46 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 47 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 May 2010

This hotel was perfect for our brief stay in Edinburgh. The hotel staff, especially Susanna at the front desk, were extremely helpful and very professional...The rooms were immaculate and the beds were very comfortable. I would highly recommend this hotel for its amenities as well as conveniet location to the Edinburgh Castle and many restaurants.

  • Stayed May 2010, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
Thank skiobx
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Rhoose
Level Contributor
58 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 50 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 May 2010

I would love to give this hotel a balanced review, but unfortunately my view was marred on our first night by the poor attitude of one of the maintenance staff. After a long tiring day a bath was in order but I was shocked to find the first bath I ran was very green in colour with black bits on the bottom. I let this water go and ran a second which again was very green. Reception sent up a maintenance person who got very agitated when challenged. Firstly he said it wasn’t green, then he said it was the light, and then he said the water was that colour in his house. When questioned whether he thought it was acceptable, he ended the conversation with ‘well you don’t have to get in it if you don’t want to, but that’s the way it is’. His rude response was enough to reduce me to tears and make me want to go home. Part of Rocco Forte’s statement regarding his hotel philosophy states he wants his guests experience to be like home from home. I certainly don’t bathe in green water at home.
After complaining, we moved rooms, but the water remained green. May be this is the way the water is in Edinburgh, but we felt that this could have been pointed out to us by way of a small notice in the bathroom (as I have experienced in other hotels around the world).
To comment on the hotel as a whole, the public spaces are well presented and the service was good. The meal in the Number One restaurant was excellent. The bathrooms are a little tired and need updating. Breakfast is a chaotic experience which was a disappointment as the buffet choice was very good, just presented on such small tables you felt you were in the way if you wanted to browse what was on offer. The gluten free bread was the best I’ve tasted in any hotel, even though it was delivered to the wrong table initially. We had breakfast in our room the next day which was a much more relaxed affair.
We had cut short our 3 night break on the evening of the 3rd night unexpectedly. In fairness the hotel did not charge us for the 3rd night. I’m not sure if this was their policy or as a token for the water episode, but nothing was mentioned on check out.
Unfortunately, the incident with the water will always be the first thing I remember about our stay here.

  • Stayed April 2010, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Abs64
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
balmoraledinburgh, General Manager at The Balmoral Hotel, responded to this review, 11 May 2010
Dear Guest

Having read your review, I am glad to learn that in general you encountered high levels of service whilst staying at The Balmoral Hotel recently. Our Michelin starred restaurant, number one, is extremely popular and I am delighted that you enjoyed the experience. We are continuously upgrading our facilities and are currently half way through a refurbishment programme of our bathrooms, which will bring these in line with the levels of decor that you mention you were impressed with in our public areas.

The water in Edinburgh can often appear yellow/green in colour, which is due to the peaty moorland at the water source. (which incidentally also contributes to the distinct flavour of our most famous export, Whisky!) I would like to assure you that this is in no way harmful. I understand that at the time of your stay you spoke with our duty manager who clarified this for you, however, I would like to offer my personal apologies for the poor impression you were left with when you initially reported this issue to our maintenance team.

I sincerely hope that you will consider staying at the Balmoral in the future.

Yours sincerely
Ivan Artolli
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sunderland UK
Level Contributor
87 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 67 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 May 2010

All the other good reviews were not wrong .We stayed here for a special treat and were made most welcome from the first moment. The entrance and reception areas are beautifully kept , all the staff were friendly and very efficient.
Our room overlooked the inner courtyard so not much of a view but very quiet .
Breakfasts were very nice and the service was very good .
We ate in Hadrians one evening and the food was lovely .
The spa pool was lovely and very relaxing after a day walking around .
All in all a hotel worthy of its rating that offered very good service and many nice little touches that make a stay extra special .
We would love to stay here again.

  • Stayed April 2010, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank nwc389
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 30 April 2010

My partner and I went to Edimburgh for a short break and stayed at the Balmoral, the service is excellent, the staff is genuinely helpful and friendly, the spa treatments are to die for, the products they use are in my bathroom since then. The restaurants are great, specially Number One for dinner, Hadrian's Brasserie is a real treat for breakfast, they have this amazing breakfast menu, with very healthy options, try the Japanese breakfast, they also have the Scottish breakfast option. Concierge desk has the most amazing recommendations from horse riding to short trips to the Higlands and of course great nights in top restaurants. Thumbs up to the Rocco Forte Hotels.

  • Stayed April 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank EmperadorLondon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Balmoral Hotel

Property: The Balmoral Hotel
Address: 1 Princes St, Edinburgh EH2 2EQ, Scotland
Region: United Kingdom > Scotland > Edinburgh > Princes Street and Gardens
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Spa Hotel in Edinburgh
#3 Family Hotel in Edinburgh
#5 Business Hotel in Edinburgh
#7 Luxury Hotel in Edinburgh
#10 Romantic Hotel in Edinburgh
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £££
Hotel Class:5 star — The Balmoral Hotel 5*
Number of rooms: 188
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
You will find The Balmoral at Edinburgh's most prestigious address, No. 1 Princes Street, where the Old Town stops and the New Town begins. Our hotel's majestic clock defines the city's skyline and since the day we opened in 1902 it has run three minutes fast to ensure you will never miss your train. The Balmoral is a grand railway hotel where our porters can still be organised to whisk guests from the station hall to the reception desk, and our kilted doormen will guide you into the hotel. Experience Number One our Michelin-starred restaurant, indulge in afternoon tea at Palm Court or drinks in the signature whisky bar, Scotch. A comprehensive range of treatments will help you unwind in the award-wining Balmoral Spa. The 188 opulent suites and stylish rooms have magnificent views of the city or the hotel's internal courtyard. The hotel's ten banqueting suites all enjoy natural daylight and stunning views of Edinburgh Castle, Princes Street or the historic Old Town and can accommodate a wide range of events. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Balmoral Hotel Edinburgh
Balmoral Edinburgh Hotel
The Balmoral Hotel Edinburgh, Scotland

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