Perth is, I confess, not somewhere I have ever stayed before. I have been to the city many times – but never stayed overnight.
So when a friend mentioned that the Parklands Hotel has just completed a refurbishment of their rooms, I was interested. But not nearly as interested as when she then outlined their restaurant options. The hotel is part of the small group that also owns the renowned 63 Tay Street restaurant in the city, and the same quality of food is promised at the hotel.
Budget or boutique?
Oh, this is boutique. The attention to detail and the wonderful design touches – from the custom made four poster in the City of Perth suite to the amazing light fittings and fabrics throughout the hotel – tell you that this is somewhere that takes your comfort very seriously.
The recent refurbishment means that the large townhouse rooms now have a modern, sleek look with great colours and luxurious fabrics. There are lighted make-up mirrors and sumptuous Anyah eco-friendly toiletries in the bathrooms as well as – in some rooms – his and hers washbasins, which always helps avoid arguments.
There are bedside DAB radios and smart TVs with an abundance of channels. All rooms also have usb charging ports, so you have only to remember your charging cable – no need to pack bulky plugs of your own.
Wining and dining
Whilst the hotel itself is delightful, the real attraction of Parklands is the food. The chef in charge of 63 Tay Street also oversees the food here. There are two restaurants, 63@Parklands and No.1 The Bank Bistro. As the name suggests, 63@Parklands is a fine dining outpost of the original with the same astonishing food on offer. The bistro, while still offering the same great quality of produce, has a much more informal style of dining. The conservatory where you eat offers a great view over the hotel’s landscaped gardens and Perth beyond.
Worth getting out of bed for
If you’re able to move after gorging on the amazing breakfasts on offer (I particularly recommend the haddock with poached egg, although the full Scottish breakfast is pretty damned fine as well) then you can always get yourself a table at the original restaurant and feast some more on the delights of Orkney pig cheek or rack of Scotch hogget.
If you can’t manage to make it all the way across South Inch Park – those breakfasts are particularly filling – then you always have the option of toddling out for a drink at one of the outside tables as you gaze out over the city. However, if you make it into the town centre, Perth has a lot to offer.
There is a host of small independent retailers to browse around, and if you feel like taking the weight off your feet Perth has its very own Café Quarter. As you would expect from a place literally steeped in whisky, their other hospitality venues extend a very warm welcome too.
You should probably know that this is considered to be the home of Ginger Grouse – there’s a plaque to that effect in the bar – so why not indulge yourself?
Guest book comments
Parklands is a great base for exploring Perthshire, but it’s also ideal if all you desire is to hole up, eat yourself silly and recharge your batteries.
• The Perth Dining Experience includes dinner at the Eat Scotland Gold awarded restaurant 63 Tay Street on the first evening and dinner the following evening at 63@Parklands. Price includes dinners, accommodation in a standard twin or double and full Scottish breakfast each morning. Standard rooms are £189 per person with superior rooms an extra £10. The Parklands Hotel, 2 St Leonard’s Bank, Perth, Scotland, PH2 8EB (01738 622451, www.theparklandshotel.com)