Princes Street is one of Edinburgh’s busiest arteries and visitors who have shopped until they drop will not want to venture too far out to enjoy a glass of wine, a good meal and a place to rest their head.
This particular road also holds a lot of history and there is far more to see compared to other high streets. The Rutland is a luxurious city centre boutique hotel situated conveniently at the tip of the main shopping district. Cosseted by enviable views of Edinburgh Castle on its doorstep, it really is an ideal base from which to discover one of the UK’s most remarkable cities.
One of the first things you notice about the hotel as soon as you step inside is the sumptuous décor and unique charm. Black and silver Italian style furnishings including high throne-like chairs, mirrors and backless sofas adorn the reception area. It’s hard to imagine that it was once the home of renowned surgeon Joseph Lister.
There are 12 individually-designed guestrooms as well as a private two-bedroom apartment. My room had a red and white theme from the velvet red flowered wallpaper to the fine Egyptian bed linen and covers on the goose-down duvet and pillows. And although ultra chic and modern, a complimentary home-baked muffin on the bed gave it the ‘home from home’ feel. The room oozed sophistication with the signature white headboard, designer furniture which included a table and two relaxing chairs and carefully selected artwork.
The wardrobes offered towelling robes and slippers, but what was really nice was the attention to the finer details like the GHD hair straighteners. Ask any modern woman worth her sophistication who her best friend is and the answer is likely be a hair straightener nowadays.
The ensuite bathroom was lined with Arran Aromatics beauty products while the bath turned in to a Jacuzzi at the switch of a button which proved a great way to unwind after a day of sightseeing and shopping or before heading off to have a few drinks and a good meal. Luckily the boutique hotel is also home to one of the city’s popular bars – The Huxley and gourmet steak restaurant – Kyloe. A relaxed and informal setting, the Huxley opens for breakfast and stays open late into the evening so there is plenty of time to sample a wide range of new cocktails that bartenders come up with every month. The location of the bar at the junction of five streets makes it a great setting to watch the world go by.
The Kyloe Restaurant & Grill which derives its name from the Scottish cattle is situated above the bar and is a meat lover’s paradise. Here at the gourmet steak restaurant, you can indulge in some of Edinburgh’s most coveted Aberdeen Angus steak, sourced from Hardiesmill Farm on the Scottish Borders. You can also sample an array of other meats from the diverse a la carte menu featuring the finest in Scottish produce.
They say you eat with your eyes first and the chef at Kyloe’s takes this concept very seriously. Diners can select cuts of meat from a wooden board brought to their table before ordering. The presentation of the food is also worthy of mention. My guest ordered Salt Cod and Chorizo Croquettes which did not appeal to me. But the minute the dish arrived on the table all beautifully presented, it had my taste buds going and it was hard to resist trying it. The Pineapple Crème Brulee was also amazing and almost too pretty to eat. The dessert was presented in its pineapple shell which had been cored.
Private dining is also available at this restaurant so whether you have a special occasion to celebrate, a romantic meal, a business meeting or just want to spoil yourself downright, then a special seating area is available.
Prices are very reasonable with starters from as little as £4.50 and the main courses from £14. The portion sizes are generous and you’ll walk away feeling like you’ve had a hearty meal. This is just what you need to keep up with a city like Edinburgh where there is always lots to do regardless of the time of year.
For more information on Rutland Hotel, visit www.therutlandhotel.com. We travelled to Scotland with East Coast trains. Standard advance return tickets between London and Edinburgh booked online at www.eastcoast.co.uk start from £34.00.