This former Missoni hotel was taken over by Carlson Rezidor in 2014 and re-christened The G&V Royal Mile. A member of the group’s Quorvus collection of “curated luxury hotels”, the 136-room hotel is housed mostly in a low-rise new-build, though 15 of the hotel’s rooms are within an adjoining 15th-century building on the city’s Royal Mile thoroughfare – opposite the National Library of Scotland and a five-minute walk from Edinburgh Castle.
WHAT’S IT LIKE?
The lobby is a chic, intimate space, stylishly decorated with reflective orb ceiling lamps, cream velour carpeting, an electric fireplace and, lodged in each corner, two enormous mosaic water vases from the hotel’s Missoni days. There is a panel bookcase on the far wall, filled with framed black and white photographs, lifestyle books, candles and vases of fresh flowers, which leads to a cluster of free-standing reception pods next to the lifts.
In the evenings, the bookcase glows with ethereal green and violet backlighting, while large copper lamps hang over a white marble table that extends the length of the lobby. This serves as a good work spot for guests, with a number of power sockets installed discreetly on its underside. To the right of the entrance there is a small counter serving baked goods, coffees and teas, opposite which a sleek white staircase leads up to the mezzanine level, and the hotel’s restaurant.
Directly ahead of the entrance is the Epicurean Bar, which is decked out with dark wood walls, fuchsia leather booths and monochrome mosaic tiles on the floors. Opened in November, the bar has already won the prestigious title of Best Bar at the Scottish Hotel Awards. Inspired by the Scottish Colourists, the drinks menu offers up an array of original and traditional tipples, described as “aromatic infusions and colourful cocktails that use home-grown flowers and herbs”. These herbs are grown in the hotel’s EvoGro plant growing system, which uses environmental sensors, LED lighting and hydroponics (a method of growing plants without soil) to grow micro herbs and flowers in half the usual time.
WHERE IS IT?
In a prime position, the hotel is located on the intersection of George IV Bridge and Lawnmarket, on the upper end of the Royal Mile.
The 136 rooms, which include nine suites, are spread across five floors. Excluding the suites, these range from the 22 sqm Petite rooms, to the 28 sqm Signature room and 32 sqm Deluxe room which, with a small lounge, can accommodate three people. Rooms are decorated using warm colours and original, modern furnishings with floor-to-ceiling windows that look out across the city. They all come with wifi, iPod speakers, a Nespresso maker, bottles of water and toiletries from Scottish cosmetic company Arran Aromatics.
Carrying on the hotel’s design roots, rooms and suites have been designed by a selection of Scottish artists and designers, including fashion designer Judy R Clark, artist Christine Clark, Glaswegian interiors company Timorous Beasties and artist and textile designer Hatti Pattisson.
I stayed in the Garden Paradise Suite – designed by Pattison – which is an explosion of vibrant floral and ocean-inspired colours featuring her designs on a three-piece suite, the bed and its throw pillows. Abstract oil paintings hang on the walls while a striking hand-painted wall mural enlivens the entry corridor. In the lounge area, there is a good selection of lifestyle magazines, a large TV and a glass coffee table with a handsome tree trunk base. The suite offers stunning views across Edinburgh’s rooftops and sooty turrets, which are shrouded in a ghostly mist in the mornings, though this burns off in the day to reveal the grassy highlands and Arthur’s Seat in the distance.
In the bedroom, another TV stands freely opposite the bed, while a work desk is lodged under a circular mirror framed in raw wood. Tucked around the right hand-side of the bed there is a chest of drawers, and a secluded nook with plenty of hanging space, drawers and a safe.
Separated from the bedroom by a sliding door, the bathroom is split into three by glass walls, with a walk-in rain shower and tub decked out in glossy silver and black tiling, while hot pink acrylic walls brighten the toilet and separate sink area.
On the first floor mezzanine is Cucina, the hotel’s Italian restaurant where breakfast is also served. Refurbished in July 2016, the space pops with paint and colour boasting gorgeous wall murals, summery throw pillows and flamboyant crockery, dishing up rustic pasta and risottos alongside heavier meat and fish dishes that champion Scottish produce. On the rooftop, the hotel has three of its own bee hives, the honey and honey comb from which is served at breakfast. There is also a small outdoor seating area adjacent to the restaurant – popular in the summer for evening cocktails and small parties.
On the same level, there are two meeting rooms that lead into a shared foyer, good for receptions, stag and hen parties, though the rooms can be fitted with boardroom tables or cocktail counters for more corporate formats.
The hotel’s spa is made up of two treatment rooms on the second floor offering massages, manicures and tailored therapies using Ishga and Ila skincare lines. One morning I had a relaxing, if brief, massage, from a warm and enthusiastic therapist, who did a good job of sending me into a peaceful slumber.
VERDICT A thoughtfully designed property with a lively bar and beautifully-decorated, comfortable rooms – ideal for a weekend away or a midweek business stay.
PRICE Internet rates for a flexible midweek stay in March start from £180 for a Petite room with breakfast.
CONTACT The G&V Royal Mile, 1 George IV Bridge, Edinburgh EH1 1AD; +44 (0)131 220 6666; quorvuscollection.com/en/gandv-hotel-edinburgh