Stepping inside the reception area of Gleneagles Townhouse, the immediate reaction is to look up. And for good reason: Preserved stained-glass panels preside over the double-height space, which also features a grand staircase with its original balustrade and gold-painted ornamentation. The posh 33-room boutique hotel is a sister property to the famed Gleneagles sporting resort in the Scottish countryside. The Townhouse, opened last year, is situated along St Andrew Square in Edinburgh, in a historic 19th-century building that once housed the Bank of Scotland.
Adjacent to the reception area is The Spence restaurant, where chef Jonny Wright’s modern Scottish-inspired cuisine is enjoyed in a singular setting. A soaring and ornate glass dome crowns the centrally located bar, drawing the eye up once again. Amid classical details such as carved stone columns and busts portraying important Scottish figures, the decor infuses a contemporary note, including a soft pink and green palette. Barstools and chairs upholstered in rosy hues are joined by seafoam banquettes. The burl-wood bar, appointed with marble and frosted glass, is illuminated by globe light fixtures that evoke the building’s banking days.
Like its pastoral counterpart, the Townhouse offers memberships. Among the perks of which are access to cultural activities and special areas. The latter includes Lamplighters rooftop bar, also open to hotel guests. While the terrace boasts expansive views, the interior is decidedly cozy, with plush upholstered seating that includes curved banquettes and fringe-edged sofas. The glass walls impart a solarium effect, with botanical-print carpeting and flower-shaped stools adding to the indoor/outdoor vibe. The bar is named after the Robert Louis Stevenson poem, and features cocktails inspired by his writing. (Order a signature Leerie, composed of Casamigos Tequila, Cloud Catcher Cordial, cranberry, Aperol and coconut.)
On the lower level of the Townhouse, which contains the gym and wellness studios—dubbed The Strong Rooms—vestiges of the property’s previous life remain, in the form of the old steel bank vaults. Treatments and therapy space as well as dozens of classes are offered here, along with state-of-the-art amenities such as a cryotherapy chamber and infrared sauna. It’s a balance of old and new at its finest.