Executive room at The Balmoral in Edinburgh

The Balmoral

Edinburgh - United Kingdom


The Balmoral is a bona fide Edinburgh landmark, a grand old Victorian railway hotel that dominates the skyline with its iconic clock tower.

This historic building in the heart of the city is now a chic and luxurious retreat, with interiors by British designer Olga Polizzi and a fantastic Michelin-starred restaurant. It’s a perfect marriage of contemporary style and traditional Scottish hospitality, a place where you can choose from over 500 varieties of whisky and where the hotel doormen sport kilts.

The central location next to Edinburgh Waverley station is hard to beat, especially if you’re arriving by train. All the main sights of both the Old Town and the New Town are within easy walking distance, as is the LGBT-friendly nightlife of the ‘Pink Triangle’. The Balmoral is also a great base if you’re visiting during one of the city’s many festivals.

Inclusive Retreats Rating

5 stars

The Inclusive Retreats rating is for guidance only and does not mirror any international 'star rating' system. We recommend you read the property's full description and use in conjunction with the classification indicated.

£219 from

Per Person

Two people sharing a room for 2 nights in November 2018. Contact us for your specific requirements. From price for guidance only, all subject to availability.


  • Landmark hotel in the heart of the city
  • Home to a fantastic Michelin-starred restaurant
  • Walking distance from LGBT-nightlife in the 'Pink Triangle'
  • Award-winning spa
  • Spectacular whisky bar

Image Gallery

award-winning spa at The Balmoral in Edinburgh
The Balmoral grand lobby area
Historic Palm Court at The Balmoral
Number ne at The Balmoral
Whisky room at The Balmoral in Edinburgh

Nearby Attractions

The Balmoral is at No. 1 Princes Street, right next to Waverley station in the centre of the city.

The hotel lies between the Old Town and the New Town, just a few minutes’ walk from Edinburgh Castle, the Royal Mile and the shops of George Street. You’ll be spoilt for choice when it comes to restaurants and bars, and you’re also near to cultural attractions including the Scottish National Gallery and the Edinburgh Playhouse.

Edinburgh is a great city for nightlife, and the best LGBT venues are concentrated around the northern end of Leith Street in an area known as the ‘Pink Triangle’, just a 5-minute walk from The Balmoral.


The hotel comprises 168 rooms and 20 suites, decorated in a tasteful and contemporary style with the occasional nod to your surroundings; look out for the Sean Connery prints in the bathrooms! All accommodation includes a TV, WiFi, mini bar, safe and tea/coffee making facilities, and some rooms have views of Edinburgh Castle.

The award-winning spa includes five treatment rooms, an indoor pool, sauna and steam room, and there is also a gym with all the latest workout equipment.

Foodies flock to the hotel’s Michelin-starred restaurant, Number One, which wows diners with contemporary Scottish cuisine under the direction of executive chef Jeff Bland. There is also a more informal brasserie, Hadrian’s, and afternoon tea is served in the Palm Court under a spectacular glass dome. There are also several places to grab a drink, including a whisky bar with over 500 malts, blends and vintages.

Amenities & Activities

  • Sauna
  • WiFi
  • Air Conditioning
  • Laundry Service
  • Spa
  • Fitness Centre
  • Bar
  • Restaurant
  • Concierge
  • Room Service
  • Beauty Treatments
  • Massage
  • Wheelchair Access
  • Steam Room
  • Indoor Swimming Pool

A Historic Hotel

Balmoral means ‘majestic dwelling’ in the Gaelic language, and it’s an apt name for this masterpiece of Victorian railway architecture. The hotel first opened its doors in 1902, and has played host to many prestigious guests over the years, including Elizabeth Taylor, Paul McCartney and the Queen Mother, who was a regular visitor for lunch. The hotel’s famous clock is set three minutes fast to ensure that visitors to the station don’t miss their train, except for New Year’s Eve when it runs on time for Edinburgh’s Hogmanay celebrations.

The Balmoral Edinburgh

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The Balmoral

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Why choose Inclusive Retreats?

No one should be made to feel uncomfortable on holiday because of who they are. Our aim is to ensure that every traveller receives a warm welcome, and we only partner with properties that provide an open-minded, non-judgemental and safe environment for all guests. Our recommendations are based on our years of experience and the strong relationships we’ve forged with LGBT-friendly accommodation providers around the world.

At Inclusive Retreats we make it easy for you to book your accommodation, flights, transfers and car hire all in one place. Inclusivity is at the heart of what we do, and we specialise in creating amazing hassle-free holidays for everyone, regardless of your sexual orientation, gender or lifestyle.

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