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As the site of a year-long Homecoming celebration, the Commonwealth Games, Ryder Cup, Andy Murray hotel, and possible declaration of independence, Scotland is having a huge year in 2014. Good time for a new hotel to open up in the capital, Edinburgh.
The just-opened 138-room DoubleTree by Hilton Edinburgh City Centre is the first DoubleTree by Hilton in the city, joining 21 of the brand's properties in the United Kingdom. While the hotel at first looks to be a wee bit out from the main Old Town/Grassmarket/Princes Street drag, it's actually in a pretty handy location, a few minutes' walk from the castle, the bars and restaurants of Lothian Street, and the National Museum.
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Tennis pro Andy Murray is about to open his very first hotel next week in Dunblane, Scotland, but lest you think he's throwing in his tennis career to become a full-time hotelier, he will actually be missing opening ceremony to prepare for the Davis Cup quarter-final in Italy.
In true behind every great man ... tradition his mum, Judy, who actually handled much of the design herself, will be there instead.
The hotel has just 15 rooms including five suites, as well as a one-bedroom gate lodge. All have all been named by Andy in recognition of famous Scots: poet Robert Burns; Lady Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon who became Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother, Robert the Bruce, medieval King of Scotland, Eden, the family who previously owned Cromlix, Sir Alex Ferguson, former football manager and player and Sir Chris Hoy, Olympic cyclist.
Most suites feature hand-painted freestanding baths in gold, silver and copper, and all rooms feature Peter Reed 400-thread-count Egyptian cotton bed linen and Cromlix’s bespoke range of Arran Aromatics toiletries. On-site activities include tennis (of course), falconry, snooker and fishing.
Naturally this draws a lot of travellers, golf aficionados and otherwise, and British boutique chain Hotel du Vin is getting ready to tee off with a new hotel in the city’s Old Town, opening on April 1.
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With the city undergoing a major urban renewal project and in the throes of an aggressive new tourism campaign, Glasgow is going to need a few more hotel rooms to accommodate its (hoped for) mass influx of visitors. Lucky, then, that easyJet founder Sir Stelios Haji-Ioannou is planning to reopen his easyHotel, which closed early last year.
The 125-room hotel on Hill Street in Glasgow's city center will reopen on February 1st and, true to the budget airline ethos, rooms will be solidly frill-ree (your room only gets cleaned if you pay an additional fee) but going for ridiculously low prices. Rates will start at £19 a night from Sundays through Thursdays and £29 per night on Fridays and Saturdays. Following the usual "easy" format, the earlier you book, the lower the rate. Additionally the hotel is running a special promotion offering the first five cheapest rooms at £9 a night every night during February and March.
The easyHotel chain has 15 hotels throughout Europe and even as far afield as South Africa and the United Arab Emirates.
When we dubbed the Malmaison Dundee the U.K. hotel chain's "lucky 13th" property, it turns out we spoke too soon: it doesn't get much unluckier than being flooded three days before opening.
On November 28th, flooding, said to have been caused by an electrical fault, affected 15 of the hotel's 90 guest rooms. While Malmaison first claimed that the December 1st opening would go ahead as planned, that was not the case and there is currently no official opening date in sight.
We love Malmaison Hotels for their slinky design, usually reasonable rates, and for the fact that they are always located in buildings of historic interest. So we are happy to hear that they will be opening their 13th property on December 1st.
The new hotel will be located on the waterfront in Dundee, a city charitably described by the hotel company as "notorious for poets, inventors and architects," but remembered by some of us (who were born there) as grey, poor, and a wee bit depressing.
To be fair, though, in our absence, Dundee has made something of a comeback over the past few years. Where not too long ago, you could find nothing better than a Travelodge or a dodgy guesthouse, a trickle of higher end hotels have moved in too, such as the DoubleTree by Hilton and the Apex City Quay Hotel and Spa. The waterfront has been the center of this regeneration, with a huge development plan currently in progress that will turn the once-neglected area into a cultural hub filled with restaurants, green spaces, a new Kengo Kuma-designed Victoria and Albert Museum, and the Malmaison.
At first we wondered if we would soon be witness to a hotel whisky death match in Edinburgh, then we realized: it's Scotland, there's room for more than one whisky hotel.
The whisky, which is named Nira Caledonia, comes from Tullibardine, a single-malt distillery in the Perthshire region that has been in operation since 1949. It is an Aged Oak Single Malt with cereal and vanilla tones with a slight fruitiness, and the hotel's bar, Blackwood's, is the only place in Edinburgh where you can try it.
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Andy Murray may have lost his US Open trophy but he's still got the fighting spirit required for his new hotelier career -- he's only gone and nicked someone else's chef for his own hotel!
Darin Campbell, who is currently executive head chef at the Hotel du Vin - One Devonshire Gardens, Glasgow, will start work at Murray's Cromlix House (the newest member of Small Luxury Hotels of the World) in January. The hotel won't open until April, but Campbell will be working on the menu for the restaurant to be run by Michelin-starred chef Albert Roux.
If that photo above tickles your fancy -- for both the Scotch collection and the be-kilted Scotsman -- you'll want to be adding Edinburgh's The Balmoral, a Rocco Forte property to your hotel bucket list.
The five-star landmark hotel, located on the city's main Princes Street, has just opened SCOTCH a new signature whisky bar located in its former drawing room space that features the largest collection of purely Scottish whiskies available to the general public in Edinburgh.
Now that he's won the Wimbledon championship trophy, Andy Murray can finally concentrate on his budding hotelier career.
Cromlix House dates from 1874 and is set in 50 acres of woodland and gardens close to Murray's hometown of Dunblane, and was the setting for his big brother's wedding in 2010.
Murray's success has gone a long way to helping lift Dunblane out of the shadows of its horrific 1996 elementary school massacre, and we are hopeful that the prestige of a celeb-run luxury property will help draw more visitors to the area.
"I'm pleased to be able to give something back to the community I grew up in." He said in a statement.
The 15-room hotel will be managed by Inverlochy Castle Management International and is set to open on April 1, 2014; in plenty of time for the Ryder Cup at nearby Gleneagles. As of a week ago, the hotel is open for bookings.
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While Marriott Hotels is hiring their own teen concierges, one hotel in Scotland is offering hotel rooms, especially for teens.
As everyone can probably remember, traveling with your family as a teenager was an interesting experience. If you're anything like this contributor, you loved traveling and all the things that came along with a parentally-funded vacation, except maybe having to bunk up with them in the same room for a couple days. By the time you're 13, sharing a bed with your 8-year-old sister has long lost whatever shine it could have possibly once had.
Well, the Glenagles Hotel in Scotland is wondering if it just might have found the solution to appease such troubled teens with their new concept of "teen rooms" -- rooms designed to accommodate a teenager traveling with this family.
The hotel said that they have launched the teen rooms in response to the steady stream of teen-oriented families that frequent the hotel. The room are "separate but near" the parent's room and are hooked up with the latest teen technology, including Playstations, iPod docks, etc. As you can see in the photo below, they don't look like anything flashy, just a simple "attic-like" space for the teens to crawl into.
Murrayfield House, is a new nine-bedroom boutique extension of the Murrayfield Hotel in Edinburgh’s City Centre. It’s another property that seems to have quietly opened while we were setting our sights on the fancy Waldorf Astoria's Caledonian. Still, we dig the idea of a tiny Victorian property that you can buy completely out, if you want (wedding parties, take note!).
The hotel, owned by independent leisure company G1 Group, is located opposite the Scottish rugby field, Murrayfield Stadium, and is minutes away from Edinburgh Zoo and Haymarket Train Station.
Furniture and accessories have been brought in from around the world—vintage items from India, light fixtures from Holland, chairs from Paris, and antique photo frames grace the room. Guests also get daily complimentary presents like whisky nips and home-made macaroons. Oh, and the WiFi is free, too.