Caledonian Hilton Edinburgh

Member Rating 5 out of 5 by barbara on April 7, 2006

The Caledonian Hilton Edinburgh is an absolutely beautiful hotel. It offers all the luxury of the Hilton brand; yet it still retains the fine personality of the grand dame it has been since it was first built over a hundred years ago in 1903. (It wasn't acquired by Hilton until 2000.) Called "the Caley" by local residents, this hotel is steeped in history. Always opulent it has been the host to both movie stars and dignitaries. I found it interesting to learn that American cowboy Roy Rogers once rode his horse Trigger down the grand staircase! Now that's a trip, isn't it?

What was our room like? It felt like a suite with its own small foyer. The room itself was huge with 14 foot high ceilings and tons of floor space. We opened the heavy green curtains on the windows to take in the view of Edinburgh Castle perched on the hill above us. As the sinking sun turned the sky pink, we opened the bottle of wine the Hilton had left for us on a table as a welcome gift and ate sugar topped oranges. Our son was happy with the roll-away bed that was already prepared for him near a desk in our room. After walking through the freezing cold streets outside, I loved standing under a hot shower. The sound from the television in the bedroom was piped into speakers in the bathroom. There was also a separate tub. Water bottles were waiting for us on the nightstands after turn-down. There's a full service health club plus a pool and jacuzzi open until 8 PM.

How was the location? This is in the heart of where a tourist would want to be in Edinburgh. In the morning we had no problem taking a brisk walk up Princes Street to get to the castle where Mary Queen of Scots gave birth to the first monarch who would rule both Scotland and England. My son loved how close we were to a small festival taking place in the middle of a park as the city geared up for Hogmany. While the restaurant in the hotel is famous, we chose to eat elsewhere. A pub directly across the street from the hotel's main entrance accepted children in the mornings and offered a very nice breakfast. The only time we used a cab was to get from the airport. The train station was even close.

Bottom line? If your budget will withstand some splurging, you'll be very comfortable at the Caledonian. With incredible service in a stunning setting, I'd have to put this five star hotel in my "top five list" for best hotels I've ever personally visited.

The Caledonian, A Waldorf Astoria Hotel
Princes Street
Edinburgh, Midlothian, Scotland, EH1 2AB
+44 (131) 2228888

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