WITH breathtaking views of Edinburgh Castle and spectacular standards fit for a king, it would be easy to expect to shell out royally high prices for a night’s accommodation in one of Edinburgh’s most famous hotels.
But the Waldorf Astoria Edinburgh – the Caledonian defies that notion and offers incredible treatment, location and facilities at very reasonable prices.
To be clear, this isn’t a budget stay – but for a night in a building steeped in history and of a high standard to match, £285 isn’t too high a price for a treat.
proudly dominating Prince Streetthe remains of the early 20th-century railway station have been restored without regard to cost – and the stunning architecture impresses you from the moment you step inside.
My wife Aleena and I were warmly greeted by our host and explained that despite our early arrival we could enjoy a Roya although our rooms were not readyl Afternoon tea in the hotel’s glamorous Peacock Alley.
We were shown to a bright, open space where we were carefully attended to by a professional – and authentic – waiter.
A genuine Edinburgh voice who informed us in great detail about our choices while respecting our dietary requirements was a nice touch – not to mention the generous portions and unlimited tea. (Hint – be prepared to ask for a doggie bag for the cakes!)
After our refreshments, there was still time for a leisurely stroll along Princes Street Gardens, taking in the sights of the capital before heading back inside to make use of the hotel’s extensive facilities.
The spa has everything you need and more – a pool, jacuzzi, steam room and sauna plus a well equipped gym for the more active types, body sweer me!
Because for us it was all about one thing: the treatments. The Waldorf has partnered with 111Skin and Ground Wellbeing and offer the best massage I’ve ever had.
Okay, I’ve only had three professional massages in my life, but let me tell you, this beat the rest.
A warm, professional masseuse received me in the “relaxation room” where we discussed what I wanted from the treatment and if I had any wishes.
My only complaint was that the treatment didn’t last longer – I could have laid there all evening and still enjoyed my stay.
But such thoughts quickly left my mind as we entered our room. . . or should i say room!
We were lucky enough to book a night in the Alexander Graham Bell Suite and were completely spoiled.
A view of the castle from every window, fresh fruit on arrival and even a bottle of whiskey if we felt like a sip. And in keeping with the Edinburgh Castle theme, the bed was indeed fit for a king.
The expansive, open spaces remain airy throughout the night, offering a peaceful night’s sleep away from the hustle and bustle of the busy capital.
Finally the food. We ate at the in-house restaurant, Grazing by Mark Greenaway, which offers new interpretations of classic Scottish cuisine.
Aleena was in culinary heaven with her shrimp toast appetizer. Since it’s a shared platter, of course I had to try it out. Yummy.
And if we thought that was great, my main course, a fabulously prepared rib eye steak, made me drool. Aleena meanwhile devoured her spicy harissa lamb with black garlic.
Miraculously we managed to fit in a peanut caramel cheesecake for dessert. Fit to the max, we made our way back to our suite for the best night’s sleep in a long time.
No wonder the hotel has been frequented by the likes of Sir Sean Connery! Of course he would be on His Majesty’s Secret Service!
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