Leith very much enjoys its own identity, being built along the waterfront with fishing and trade at its roots. The buildings are characterful and, after a huge renovation over a number of years, this whole area is very hip and happening. You could easily stay in Leith without venturing into the centre of the city and have a great time. Food wise it is a destination point for restaurants (including two Michelin starred restaurants - Martin Wishart & Tom Kitchin) amongst dozens of others.
There are 100 stylish rooms and no two are the same. Some feature bold design statements like black and white striped carpets and splashes of colour with heavy upholstery. Others are more muted. If you are a style guru and care which you are allocated then discuss it when you book. And, if you can't bear to leave the dog at home they are welcome here; a dog basket and water bowl is supplied at £10 per night for your furry friend.
All rooms have CD player, TV and 30 minutes free internet access.
Room 121 is a decadent experience with high ceilings, four poster bed and great views over the courtyards to the hills beyond.
Eating and drinking
Big into their locally-sourced ingredients, the food at Malmaison in Edinburgh is excellent. The Brasserie, with its dark wood, crisp linen, wooden venetian blinds to shield you from the sun and large ceiling fans, is something from a bygone era. It serves breakfast brunch, lunch and dinner with private dining rooms available.
The Mal Bar is open all day too and has a huge terrace out front which is a great place to sit and get your bearings as you plan your day with coffee (or something stronger). The large dark interior gives off a similar vibe to the brasserie, with big leather couches to sink into if you're need a little cosseting.
The gym is open 24 hours a day. Named gymtonic, it offers free weights and various machines - all of which I regard as torture but am told they do the job.
Uniformed, smiley and on the ball.
Who stays there
Those who enjoy the luxury of a well run and well known hotel brand including singles, couples, foodies and pet lovers. Those who would like to find out more about Edinburgh in addition to the obvious.
- Culture vultures
Pros & Cons
- Lovely outlooks over the forth
- Michelin starred restaurants on your doorstep
- Good place just to hang out
- A 15 minute bus ride to the centre of Edinburgh