Travel Blogs from Edinburgh
... Paris, finding the metro, taking the metro to the next train station, buying a train ticket to the airport, then actually finding and getting on the train.
But here's the funny thing; the trains stop inside the metro system, and look exactly the same (at least to me) as the metro trams. So this led to a little bit of confusion on my part... To add to the chaos, the train platforms had changed because of the strike, so trains and metro trams were not on the tracks ...
... of a bottle shop and so had a mini tasting of whiskies. We had the difference between lowland, Spey and Islands whiskies explained to us. And was surprised to find that the whisky from the island tasted 'fishy'. Thought I was imagining it, but the guy confired that it really was fishy. Don't quite know how this would be.
We bought a nice bottle of a single malt from one of the islands. One of only 300+ bottles produced by ...
I have just completed the second leg of my sixth road trip since being in the UK. For this stage my friend Donnach from Northern Ireland joined us, so I am now sharing a car with a short Indian and a crazy Irishman. After picking up Donnach from the Glasgow airport we travelled up the west coast and had our first dilemma at Crianlarich - Oban or Fort William!! Due to the impending weather I made an executive decision to ...
... then drove around Cockenzie checking out the street names and found Thomson Crescent. We saw that Cockenzie House had a cafe open and we went there for lunch. We were shown around Cockenzie House (it has over 70 rooms, though we saw only a few) by a man whom, we discovered, was the owner. He moved there about 30 years ago and is trying to restore it. He has done well, but it will take a lot of time and money for the House to realise its full potential. On our ...
... I got there just as she was ready to leave again. And this kept up for over an hour. Up hills, down hills, over cobblestones and through crowds. I was able to catch up in time not to be completely lost as we watched the candlelight processional moving through the center of Edinburgh. It was a bit of a bummer that the street wasn't closed to tour busses so just as the pipes and drums passed us, so did three ...
How has this hotel rated in the past?
Historical Traveler Reviews The Howard Edinburgh
Loved the Howard
We absolutely loved the Howard. If you are willing to spend the money do it, you will not be sorry. The rooms were beautiful, comfortable and very luxurious. The bath was wonderfull with a giant claw foot tub and a first rate marble tiled shower. The staff was the best. The butler was helpful in setting up dinner, giving recommendations. One night I called room service and asked them to make me a salad. They did and it was delicious with elegantly arranged spinach leaves and asparagus. The butler allowed me to go to a private whiskey club that the hotel is a member to. I did not request it but he offered to do it saying he felt they hadn't done enough for me. Good location within easy walking of pubs and dinner. Absolutely wonderful
Wedded bliss at The Howard
We have just returned from our two night stay and wedding reception at The Howard, it was amazing !!!!!!
From the moment we arrived to fresh coffee and warm shortbread to the amazing rooms our party were given, feature bathrooms with free standing baths, rain showers and a double jacuzzi.
Oversized bedrooms all tastefully decorated with plasma t.v's, our suite even had another bathroom and a kitchen area.
The afternoon tea while I was getting ready for my wedding was a real treat, and when our guests arrived back to the hotel for the recepetion they were taken back. Being met at the door by butlers, taken through to the dinning room and served a sumptious 4 course meal, they could want for nothing.
The hotel have got everthing right, stunning rooms which make you feel at home and staff that are really down to earth and make you feel so relaxed and able to ask for anything you need.
I fully recommend the The Howard for any function, wedding or just a treat, we shall be back soon.
I have been advised to go and look at The Howard this year as apparently it has been refurbished. Good, it needed it. I cannot express the utter disappointment we felt at the hands of this group, we had our wedding booked here and after a nights stay, we cancelled it, we have yet to find another venue, I do feel slightly sorry for Joanne the General Manager, it is often the case that you have to work with the product you have but it doesn't excuse the lack of training and service from the staff and an intimate 5 star (whose rating is that btw? not AA) should exude personality. With a great deal of cash spent here this could be the best hotel in Edinburgh, sadly, it's not.
There were problems with the guests stay , these were addressed at the time. The Howard has continued to develope and improve the service that we offer our guests in the 14 months since their stay. eg: the appointment of a Head Butler to lead our team and the continuing refurbishment programme (completion December 2005).
The Howard is simply the best place to stay when in Edinburgh. Even before we arrived the service we recieved between making our booking and arriving at the hotel was superb. The staff are very knowledgable and were able to offer some excellent advice on the must see sights and also some quirky shops which we would never have known about without their help.
The hotel is central being only 5 minutes from the main shops, without you having to worry about being kept awake all night by rowdy hen parties as we have been in our past visits to The Balmoral.
Further plus points are that the butlers in the hotel are on hand to cater to your every need from unpacking our bags when we arrived to organising a candle lit dinner served course by course in our room, nothing we asked for was too much trouble. Our car was parked for free in the secure car park throughout our stay which is a real bonus as every other 5 star hotel in town seems to demand at least £10 per day on top of your room rate, so great to see this is not the case here.
The room itself was beautifully decorated and in keeping with the style of the building, neither to modern nor to flowery or old fashioned.
The only downside to the hotel would be that their is no proper business centre and the only way to check emails is through a complex and unreliable system integrated into the tv. However if you are planning on staying at The Howard, the quality of service and charm of the staff should more than make up for this.
The Howard was perfect!
My husband and I got married at The Howard in October 2004. It was absolutely perfect, just what we wanted.
We arrived and had everything taken care of for us, drinks in the sitting room whilst we checked in and had a room prepared for us (as we arrived at 7am straight from the airport).
The food was absolutely delicious, breakfast was free and although the room service was a little dear it was nice for a treat.
The lunch we had in one of the private rooms after our wedding ceremony was gorgeous. We had two butlers serving us and again, the food was spectacular. They had organised everything for us via e-mail so it was a totally stress free day.
We stayed in a suite and my family stayed in the regular guest rooms, both of which were beautiful. The suite had 2 bathrooms one with a free standing spa bath, a loungroom, kitchenette, bedroom with kingsize canopy bed and hall way, plus our own private entry which was handy.
The guest rooms have kingsize beds as well (from memory) and large lounge area plus large bathroom. All perfectly presented.
The location is beautiful and quite. My husband and I enjoyed the 10 minute walks to the central area, past quiet Georgian streets and restaurants.
Upon leaving we had the butler take our luggage out to the car and drive it around the front for us, having already settled the bill all we had to do was walk out our suite door and hop straight in the car. A perfect end to a perfect stay.
The service was faultless (we even had a follow up letter to make sure we enjoyed ourselves, however my mother lost it before I ever saw it!). I would recommend The Howard to anybody staying in Edinburgh. It's a small, relaxing, delightful hotel. I couldn't fault our stay there. Whenever we return to Edinburgh we will not even consider staying anywhere else.
Much better 2nd time!
We first stayed at The Howard in December 2004 for our wedding anniversary and we were very dissappointed. We normally stay at the Scotsman and had got used to the excellent location and the great beds. However we decided to stay somewhere different. We had booked a superior room from laterooms.com which was OK but not 5 star - not even 3 star. We mentioned some of the problems at reception on check out and instantly got 25% off the bill and lots of apologies, which made us feel a bit better. However we did still pass on the very negative omments card. 2 days later we had a personal letter from the General Manager to say that she was sorry we had not enjoyed our stay and inviting us back for a complimentary night when it suited us.
On our second (free) visit we were personally greeted and checked in to a suite and everything was wonderful. The bathroom was fantastic and huge. The room was extremely spacious and the service was excellent - definately 5 star, and we could not fault it. Considering this was a free visit which we had not asked for then we were very impressed. Car parking is free and once you have unpacked the butler takes your car away and parks it is their car park. B/fast is very nice with lots of choice and all silver service.
It is worth noting that the The Howard is not a standard hotel - it is a posh townhouse with 18 rooms of which 5 are suites. They pride themselves on personal service and it is very individual, so there are no tea or coffee makers in the room but they will make you tea when ever you want it. The public rooms are beautiful and the staff are very nice. Everyone knows your name and if you get a kick form beautiful period properties (think Jane Austen) then this is the place for you. However the location is a good 10 minutes walk to Princess Street which could be off putting if you wanted to be based right in the centre - however it is quiet. For location you can't beat the Balmoral or the Scotsman, but if you don't mind a walk then it is fine. A taxi ride to the castle area will cost you about £5. Note room service is expensive - a bottle on non vintage champagne cost us £60, which is over a 50% mark up!
Overall we were very impressed and would visit again, but only if we got a good room and at a good rate.
We stayed at the Howard for one night in late March. The hotel is nice, but it didn't live up to its advertising. First of all, we got there around 3 pm and there was some confusion as to whether our room was ready or not. We were asked to wait in the parlor--their webpage advertises a check in so smooth you'd hardly notice it. Then when our room was ready, our butler held the door for us so we could carry our own bags--so much for the ad. that mentions your personal butler who even unpacks your bags. Our didn't even carry ours! Then we had to ask 3 different times over the course of 45 minutes for an extension cord/transformer for my husband's breathing machine. Once I finally went to the office and showed a bit of impatience they said, "Oh we were told it was for a laptop, we didn't know it was important." Then it was finally delivered. Also the tv is some kind of complicated system that requires 2 remotes and has no sleep timer. Other than the somewhat rough start, the room was lovely, spacious, and very comfortable. The bathroom was huge, with two pedestal sinks, a large tub, and a big shower stall. Breakfast was good with a fairly large selection.
A highest possible quality stay!
Had a weekend at The Howard in April 2003. This a superb, discreet town-house near Princes Street in Edinburgh. From being shown into the drawing-room whilst your personal butler parks your car and takes your luggage to your suite, to the quality of the rooms, this experience cannot be surpassed. I recommend enjoying breakfast in your room - a great and stylish way to start the day. Staff are incredibly attentive - but discreet. A bonus (if these things are important) is that despite the high standards, room service costs for food and beverages are very reasonable. This is an 'adult' hotel - which simply enhances the experience if you are looking for a high class escape.