WITH its solid sandstone columns and portico, the entrance to No 11 Brunswick Street is a grand and stately sight for arriving guests. Once inside, though, the feeling changes to one of comfort and warmth as you escape the bustling city outside and enter a place of genuine tranquillity.
No 11 Brunswick Street
Edinburgh, EH7 5JB
Tel: 0131 557 6910, www.11brunswickst.co.uk
Originally a Georgian townhouse, No 11 was built in 1822 by the architect William Playfair, who designed large parts of Edinburgh’s New Town. Built at a cost of £1,600, it represents the last building of the Georgian era and it’s a theme the proprietors have retained inside.
The hotel’s dual showpieces are two luxury Georgian suites which feature four-poster beds, comfortably made up using Egyptian cotton sheets, duvets and pillowcases. Each room has vast floor-to-ceiling sash windows, a separate seating area and sofa bed in front of a large flat-screen television.
Our en-suite bathroom featured a deep free-standing bath, separate shower cubicle with wide overhead spray, double sinks, demisting mirrors and underfloor heating.
The property was first occupied by Lady Erskine and then a succession of Church of Scotland ministers. In the 1930s it became the home to the Black Watch Club.
ROOM SERVICE: With the dining room a few steps away, we did not require to order anything to our room, but the hotel’s staff helpfully provided a fan and endless buckets of ice on what was one of the hottest days of the year during our visit.
WINING AND DINING: No 11’s brasserie is bright but intimate with about ten tables, an elegant wooden floor and dark walls adorned with work from an up-and-coming young artist. The menu features home-made dishes using fresh produce from artisan suppliers such as Rannoch Smokery, Crombies of Edinburgh Butchers, Banchory Devenick Dairy and Thinking Chocolate. During our visit, the food was faultless and my starter of a pear, black pudding and goats cheese tart certainly hit the mark. It was fish all the way with the mains – I enjoyed mouthwatering salmon with dauphinoise, while my partner raved about her red snapper with a spring roll and noodle and edamame salad. We were nearly full to bursting, but somehow shared a flourless chocolate torte for dessert.
BUDGET OR BOUTIQUE?: The Georgian Suite ranges from £165 to £350 per night depending on the time of year, but there is variety of options among the hotel’s ten rooms (Mini Suite, Executive Double, Standard Double and Premium Single), with a Premium Single costing from £100. So, either budget or boutique depending on how much you wish to spend.
WORTH GETTING OUT OF BED FOR: With a four-poster bed in both of the hotel’s Georgian suites, the temptation is to not get out of bed at all. But for those with more get-up-and-go, the hotel is a short stroll from Princes Street, Calton Hill, the Playhouse Theatre and Leith Walk.
LITTLE EXTRAS: The hotel’s back patio area is a warm and secluded space ideal for a relaxing pre- or post-dinner drink. Also, for rooms that feature a DVD player, there is a free DVD library in the guest lounge.
GUESTBOOK COMMENTS: A grand and historic establishment with a welcoming and relaxed feel set in the heart of Edinburgh.