Tucked away in Edinburgh’s New Town, a hop skip and a jump from Stockbridge and also a convenient ten minute walk to bustling Princes Street lies one of the city’s most understated yet luxurious hotels –Nira Caledonia
Nira Caledonia is one of our favourite hotels in our hometown, praised for its unique combination of 5 star luxury; flawlessly combined with an intimacy and personality that can be lost in larger hotels. It’s no wonder it is listed as a Small Luxury Hotel of the World.
What To Expect
Located in the ‘New Town’ of Edinburgh, Nira Caledonia is housed in two original Georgian townhouses. Formerly home to John Wilson (a friend of William Wordsworth) each of the hotel’s 28 suites and rooms feature original Georgian features combined with all the modern amenities that any luxury traveller now expects.
The onsite Bar and Restaurant. Blackwood’s Bar & Grill offers a menu built around fresh and local organic produce – seafood comes from Scotland’s highland lochs, smoked salmon is from a slow food supplier in Dunkeld and beef is matured for 21 days and hung by Highland Drovers of Perth.
If you are visiting Edinburgh for whiskey (let’s face it you are in Scotland!!) then you will be pleased to know that the bar stocks all major malts.
The hotel comprises of 28 rooms and suites, each unique in style and layout, whilst maintaining their historical heritage; detailed cornicing, traditional sash windows and original wooden flooring are balanced with today’s luxury essentials – Nespresso machines and iPod docking stations are in each room and not to mention Jacuzzis in some suites!
Room types come in 5 varieties; Jacuzzi Suite, Suite, Executive Room, Petite Double and Single.
For true indulgence a Jacuzzi suite is hard to beat, with a full sized double whirlpool, who would ev
We stayed in the Dean suite which is named after the Dean River which flows through Stockbridge; a few minutes walk from the hotel. The Dean suite offers a one man Jacuzzi in the bathroom and includes a substantial lounge and TV area. The bedroom has a queen-sized bed and writing bureau, but the piece de resistance is the French windows from the bedroom leading out to your own private garden including seating area. This really is home from home luxury and what a pleasure it was to sit out on a sunny summers afternoon enjoying the tranquility from a hidden city centre walled garden.
Some little finishing touches and essentials I liked
Whilst they don’t have a ‘turn down’ service, they do come around with fresh complimentary water. I think every good quality hotel room should have a Nespresso coffee machine so good to see them in use at Nira Caledonia and no messing about with the WIFI – just log right in with the password and away you go.
For bathroom snobs, the bathroom has a whirlpool bath, rain shower and also a hand shower, great if you don’t want to get your hair wet. Finished in modern slate and floor to ceiling mirrors, this room truly sparkled!
Other Parts of the Hotel
Blackwood’s Bar & Grill is overseen by Head Chef David Scott and combines MPS Puri’s (The hotel group’s CEO) passion for using locally produced food and 40 years of experience in the luxury hospitality sector to create a carefully balanced menu that will suit all taste buds. Little finishes that go above and beyond include the fact the food is cooked in a Josper Grill, giving the meat a hint of charcoal flavour (The Honours
We dined in Blackwood’s Bar & Grill and started with the restaurant’s selection of breads freshly baked by local artisan bakery Peters Yard (a favourite of ours) and a small surprise amouse-bouche of onion bhaji.
I chose Ravioli filled with Asparagus and Ricotta (£8.00) as a starter size which was light and finished with thyme and watercress, delicious as a starter, but maybe a bit light for a main. Gillian had the Goats cheese salad with Spinach and Toasted Hazelnuts (£6.00) , served as a big thick wedge of goats cheese balanced on top of a very tasty salad.
For mains I had the Broad Bean Risotto with Mint and Lemon Pea Shoots (£15.00), which was a good sized-portion and extremely tasty and rich as any risotto should be. My dining partner had the Wild Scottish Seabass with Provenca
For desserts… you guessed it I went for the cheese board, my eyes are drawn automatically to it on any menu! The cheeses were still quite cool and could have done with being rested to room temperature but it was ok. The sticky toffee pudding with fresh ice-cream was a real winner!
For wine we enjoyed the recommended Lunate Fianofrom Sicily, Italy (£24 per bottle)
Breakfast is one of my favourite parts of any hotel experience, I look forward to waking up and seeing what tasty encounters I can greedily scoff…and the breakfast experience was no let down. Providing a self-service counter packed with fresh juices, pastries, cheeses, meats, yogurt and cereals and table service for hot food and coffees, there is plenty for a great start to the day.
I opted for the vegetarian cooked breakfast, which was a generous portion and the scrambled eggs creamy and cooked to perfection.
Coffee is made using espresso – not a cafetiere in sight 😀
The hotel is petit so there is no gym or spa, but they do recommend offsite spa treatments.
TLE Final Thoughts
The hotel is small, cosy and beautiful. It doesn’t have amenities like a pool, gym or spa, which some luxury travellers might desire but it more than makes up for it in charm, comfort and hospitality.
We would definitely recommend Nira Caledonia to any visitor coming to Edinburgh looking for a more ‘individual’ luxury Edinburgh experience.
Nira Caledonia is listed as one of Edinburgh Best Luxury Hotels
A night in a room at the Nira Caledonia costs £149 per room per night.
Address: 10 Gloucester Place, Edinburgh EH3 6EF
Tel: +44 131 225 2720