Hotel Review: Radisson Collection Hotel, Royal Mile Edinburgh, Edinburgh in Scotland
One of the finest hotels in the Scottish capital, the Radisson Collection Royal Mile Edinburgh is a new addition to the city’s impressive roll call of luxury hotels.
Formerly the Hotel Missoni, Radisson took over the 136-room property in the last year and revamped it with a real Scottish sensibility. The hotel oozes style from the moment you enter, unsurprising that it is the only five-star hotel on the Royal Mile, and a mere four minutes drive from Edinburgh’s main train station Waverley.
Edinburgh is a year round destination and outside its busiest months – December for the world renowned Hogmanay New Year’s celebrations and August for the Edinburgh International Festival and Fringe – is the perfect destination for a relaxed break.
Spectacularly located in the bustling Old Town hub between Victoria Street and the George IV Bridge, the hotel’s imposing modernist exterior conceals a cosy, welcoming heart that was perfect for a cold December day.
Proudly Scottish – the handsome doormen wear kilts – the hotel’s warm, attentive hospitality is evident from the moment we arrived. The character of the hotel is decidedly modern representing a confident, outward Scotland. The hotel was buzzing with activity on arrival and the reception is tucked away in the ample but discrete lobby of snug sofas, artfully placed coffee tables and statement rugs.
On the afternoon we arrived we were just in time for the hotel’s off-kilter re-interpretation of the traditional Scottish afternoon tea which, from what we have gathered, has built up something of a cult following. So with our scones with clotted cream we sampled the gin and negroni jelly and liquorice Panna Cotta.
Our fifth floor suite overlooked one of the most prestigious buildings on the Royal Mile, the former Lothian Chambers, now the French Consulate where the French tricolour fluttered in front of us against a crisp blue sky echoing from the past the medieval Auld Alliance, when France was Scotland’s closest ally.
The hotel is next to the busiest square in the Old Town and opposite St Giles Cathedral and had magnificent panoramas of the city – Room 507 has the best view of Edinburgh Castle. The renowned Greyfriars Kirkyard and the National Museum of Scotland are all within walking distance of the hotel.
The Alba meets Scandinavia-style design of the room is best exemplified by the pale grey and white decors effortlessly matched with light wooden flooring and the oh so chic furniture of simple sofas and cool chairs in the living area that you enter first.
Each of the nine suites are individually designed by notable Scottish artists and designers such as design duo Timorous Beasties, fashion designer Judy R Clark, artist Christine Clark, artist and textile designer Hatti Pattisson, interior design studio Graven, and furniture designer Holster.
Our suite had a playful design featuring drawings of the Edinburgh skyline and hip photography tastefully framed. The design’s desire to create a subtle sense of calm is extremely effective. We felt at home almost immediately we walked through the door.
The walk-through sleeping area was sparsely decorated in white, the centrepiece being of course a magnificently large, to just below the point of decadence, bed that was firm and comfortable. The enormous black-tiled bathroom had a deep bath and a spacious separate walk-in rain shower. The suite came with a pretty extensive mini-bar and Nespresso machine and of course complimentary newspapers.
Dining at La Cucina
The hotels award-winning Cucina Restaurant serves contemporary, unfussy Italian cuisine using local seasonal produce. Chief chef Andrew McQueen has made Cucina a firmly established gastronomic focal point of Edinburgh’s Old Town. Signature winter dishes include hearty Scottish starters such as Venison tartar with a wild mushroom sorbet and mains including wild squab pigeon with smoked bacon cabbage and honey and lavender jus.
The Epicurean Bar is popular with guests and locals alike for it’s varied cocktail mens that uses the hotel’s own hydroponically-grown flowers and herbs. In the morning do not miss the delicious breakfast, where you can choose from the Full Scottish to a large and extensive Continental selection. The tasty honey we poured over our croissants came from a hive, home to 180,000 bees, that live on the hotel’s roof.
Room rates from £120 per night
Address: Radisson Collection Hotel, Royal Mile,1 George IV Bridge, Edinburgh, EH1 1AD, Scotland.
Phone: 0131 220 6666