Hotel Indigo, York Place, Edinburgh
Graham Clark, Features Writer
The Indigo brand is now becoming firmly established in the UK. A new hotel has just opened in Durham, but I travelled further north to discover one of the first hotels in the chain to open.
Another good thing about living in Yorkshire is that we are more or less equidistant between London and Edinburgh.
Virgin East Coast and Cross Country trains have recently added more direct services to Edinburgh from Leeds, meaning that you do not have to change trains at York. If you do live in York you are fortunate as both capitals are within a 2 hour journey, making a weekend break a tempting proposition.
Coming from Yorkshire by train you arrive at Waverley station. I have heard it say that the hotel is just around the corner from the train station - it isn't, although it is within 6-8 minutes walking distance. You can either follow the tram line via St Andrews Street, which is just under half a mile, (this is a nicer route than following Leith Walk), which although is a tad nearer and 1 minute quicker, saves you from walking past a building site and the accompanying noise.
Better still get a taxi, although the hotel advised me that it would cost £8 - £10 which seemed excessive given the distance. A single ticket on the tram is £1.70, a day pass for bus and tram £4.00.
If you arrive by plane the tram goes direct from the airport and drops you literally outside the hotel.
The hotel is actually several properties knocked into one. There are 60 individual bedrooms and Junior Suites to choose from. Our twin room (room 112) was at the end of the ground floor reached by a few high stairs up again, then down again - not too good if you have mobility problems. There are lifts of course to the other floors.
The twin beds were comfortable, the Egyptian cotton bed linen was a nice touch as was the complimentary mini bar stocked with Scottish spring water, Iron Bru and Tunnock Chocolate Marshmallows - good to see local Scottish produce being used. The tea and coffee came too with shortbread biscuits.
The free Wi Fi was quick. Thinking of today's traveller the media hub had connections for MP3 players, iPods, laptops etc and links to the huge TV.
The bathroom had a walk in rain shower and a bath. These days you don't tend to get both. Luxury Aveda toiletries completed a well appointed bathroom.
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Does no one have sugar on their cornflakes these days I thought? It took a while for our request to be granted, but it is something that might sound simple, but it is the minor details that sometimes make all the difference.
The cooked breakfast ingredients are all locally sourced and we enjoyed a well presented quality breakfast. Of course you can have porridge too. Mind you if you fancy sugar on top you might find yourself having to crush the sugar cubes between two spoons.
We sampled the evening menu, it isn't too extensive though. My Scotch broth was tasty whilst my main of burger of the day - an 8oz burger of Scotch beef served in a brioche bun alongside chunky chips was enjoyable but nothing too outstanding.
My sister went for the Vegetarian Asparagus, Cherry Tomato and Onion Tart, which should have come with chunky chips but they never arrived. It looked a bit bland and could have done with some single tomatoes on top to give it a bit of colour.
My dessert of Vanilla cheesecake was fine, although my sister's 3 scoops of vanilla ice cream although tasty, might have been better presented with a wafer.
Service from the hotel reception staff was friendly and attentive and what you would expect from a 4 star boutique hotel.
The hotel is conveniently placed for a walk up Carlton Hill, Princes Street a 6-8 minute a walk away, a tram and bus stop on the doorstep and the Edinburgh Playhouse a few yards away.
Just remember to take the sugar sachets from the bedroom tea and coffee tray if you want sugar on your cornflakes or porridge!
Hotel Indigo York Place, Edinburgh. 51-59 York Place, Edinburgh EH1 3JD
Telephone 0131 556 5577
Hotel Indigo, York Place, Edinburgh, 6th April 2018, 9:00 AM