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Review: the Sheraton Grand Edinburgh hotel impresses

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This is our review of the Sheraton Grand hotel in Edinburgh.

Up until the recent refurbishment program, Sheraton Hotels tended to be a bit, well, meh. The Sheraton Grand branding was introduced to distinguish between your totally average Sheraton and your genuinely nice Sheraton.

The Sheraton Grand Edinburgh is one of the latter, and underwent a refurbishment of various areas including the bar and spa in last year.

The hotel website is here.

Sheraton Grand Edinburgh

Marriott offered me two nights at the hotel for review purposes when they found out that I was heading to Edinburgh for the opening party of the new Plaza Premium airport lounge, reviewed here.

Where is the Sheraton Grand Edinburgh hotel?

The hotel is just west of Edinburgh Castle, on Lothian Road just off Princes Street:

Sheraton Grand Edinburgh location

It is separated by a large public square from Usher Hall, a large Royal Albert Hall-style concert hall, with the equally round (but more modern) International Conference Centre on the other side.

It is very easy to get to. A taxi will take about 20 minutes, or you can take the Edinburgh Tram directly from the airport. Get off at West End and it is a few hundred metres walk up to the hotel.

Inside the Sheraton Grand Edinburgh hotel

Depending on which entrance you come in, you’ll either be on the Ground or First floor, with check-in on the ground floor:

Sheraton Grand Edinburgh check in

I was immediately attended to by trainee Ellis, who provided some of the best customer service I have had in the past year. As it turns out, Ellis is in good company, with excellent service from pretty much everyone in the hotel, from housekeeping to the waitstaff.

Ellis provided me with a sheet of paper outlining all the services the hotel provided, eg. details on the spa, breakfast timings and the Club Lounge offering.

Club Rooms at the Sheraton Grand Edinburgh hotel

I was given a Club Room on the 7th (top) floor. This is advertised as being 28 sq m, which sounds small but in reality there was plenty of room to spread out. It is possible that 28 sq m is a minimum rather than absolute size for this category.

Sheraton Grand Edinburgh

On the left are three integrated wardrobes, plus the mini bar area:

Sheraton Grand Edinburgh

Iron and ironing board, dressing gowns and kettle were all present, plus two complimentary bottles of water:

Sheraton Grand Edinburgh

Notably absent was a coffee machine. The mini fridge was empty.

First up, on the right, is the bathroom. This features a glass door that alternates as a door to the bathroom or the toilet, which I thought was an excellent use of space and avoids the problem of having two doors in conflict with each other.

You get a bath and a shower:

Sheraton Grand Edinburgh bathroom

Toiletries are by Anyah. There was no conditioner:

Sheraton Grand Edinburgh toiletries

Anyah wasn’t a brand familiar to me and a quick google seems to suggest it is more of a wholesale rather than consumer brand. Apart from the lack of conditioner I was very happy with it.

You then have the room:

Sheraton Grand Edinburgh room

The wall behind the bed is clad head-to-toe in mirrors, which made it a challenge to photograph!

In fact, there were mirrors almost everywhere in the room. I got a nice king size bed:

Connectivity on both sides included a plug as well as USB. I also appreciated the slightly old fashioned button-style light controls, with various presets, which made it very easy to turn on and off, even at night.

Opposite the bed is the TV and desk:

Sheraton Grand Edinburgh desk

The desk was big, with lots of room to spread out and some very convenient plugs. I spent my afternoon working here, looking at the view:

Sheraton Grand Edinburgh view

To the right are two armchairs and a small coffee table as well:

Spa and gym at the Sheraton Grand Edinburgh hotel

The spa and pool are one of the major selling points of the hotel. Access requires walking outside or you can take a little bridge across from the 5th floor.

The pool is open all day for guests and features a small sauna, whilst the thermal suites must be booked separately. Club Room guests get one free session, whilst other hotel guests can book a three hour slot for £30. Bear this cost in mind if you are thinking of coming here for the spa facilities.

There are lots of lockers inside, just make sure not to forget your number code like I did!

Once changed, there are some rather dingy showers, which are the weakest part of the spa. They are also missing toiletries. You then walk through to the pool, in a vast hall with windows on two sides and a pool big enough to do laps:

Sheraton Grand Edinburgh pool

Access to thermal suites is to the side; you simply scan your spa bracelet to get in. Inside, you’ll find a surprising amount of options, including:

Sheraton Grand Edinburgh bio sauna
  • bio sauna
  • Finnish sauna
  • hammam
  • crystal steam room
  • rock sauna
  • laconium
  • tepidarium
  • dry salt room

There is also an indoor-outdoor hydropool overlooking the conference centre:

Sheraton Grand Edinburgh hydro pool

The gym is equally impressive, and quite possibly the largest hotel gym I’ve used:

Sheraton Grand Edinburgh gym

Food and drink at the Sheraton Grand Edinburgh hotel

The Sheraton Grand has just one dining outlet. Frankly, with all of Edinburgh on your doorstep, you don’t need more.

It is called the One Square Brasserie and is where breakfast is served in the mornings. At lunch it features a more conventional casual menu whilst in the evening it offers something more sophisticated.

Sheraton Grand Edinburgh Square One Brasserie

It is located in a nice glass box extension overlooking Usher Hall, so you get views and lots of natural light to wake up you up in the mornings.

For dinner, I ended up having the hand-dived Orkney scallops, although ‘scallop’ would be a more accurate description – you get one big one:

Sheraton Grand Edinburgh scallops

For the main, the duck, which features two fairly small slices of duck breast and a bon bon:

Sheraton Grand Edinburgh duck

Originally I wasn’t planning on having dessert but the courses are not particularly big, so I ended up going for the creme brulee.

Sheraton Grand Edinburgh creme brulee

The food was great. In terms of quality, portion size and price it is more upmarket than I was expecting and definitely felt a notch above your average hotel restaurant.

The breakfast spread is equally good, and consists of an a la carte menu as well as a full buffet. There is a wide selection of hot items, including all the bits for a Scottish breakfast, as well as pre-made bagels with scrambled eggs and salmon:

Sheraton Grand Edinburgh breakfast

A range of cereals are there, including coco pops, as well as a good range of pastries and sweet breads:

Sheraton Grand Edinburgh breakfast

Plus juices, yoghurts, cold cuts of meat, smoked salmon and the rest.

Sheraton Grand Edinburgh breakfast

Unfortunately, my server forgot to give me the a la carte menu until after I’d helped myself to a hefty portion at the buffet. I did make up for it on the second morning, however:

Sheraton Grand Edinburgh eggs royale

Other options included pancakes, vegan Scottish, French toast and avocado toast.

The Club Lounge at the Sheraton Grand Edinburgh hotel

It’s always convenient to have Club Lounge access, especially when you’re staying for business. I always appreciate that I have a space to work outside my room where I can help myself to teas and coffees and where lighter dining options are available throughout the day.

The Club Lounge at the Sheraton Grand in Edinburgh is impressive. I believe it was part of the refurbishment program last year. Whilst it has no views, it features a glass conservatory roof which means it is always bright and airy:

Sheraton Grand Edinburgh club lounge

Breakfast is served until 11am and features a similar, albeit slightly smaller range of the breakfast at One Square Brasserie. I was delighted to find an orange juicing machine where you can help yourself.

There is no afternoon tea served but the lounge more than makes up for it with an impressive canapé offering during ‘happy hour’ between 5pm and 7pm. This is table service only. The canapé selection was great:

Sheraton Grand Edinburgh club lounge canape

Conclusion

I have to admit that I was impressed with the Sheraton Grand in Edinburgh. Over the years a few people have mentioned their affection for the hotel and I went in with high expectations, but it still delivered.

Service was almost universally outstanding – the staff here are a real credit to Marriott – with some of the best service I’ve had at a UK (and even international) hotel in some time.

The facilities are excellent – a surprisingly comprehensive spa, large pool, well equipped gym and a beautiful Club Lounge cover all the bases. I wouldn’t hesitate to stay here again.

Room rates are an average £200 per night in November, dipping as low as £160, whilst you can expect to use between 32,000 and 60,000 points per night, depending on the season. You can find out more on the hotel website here.

Thank you to Marriott for arranging my stay.


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Comments (38)

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

  • Frank says:

    My solicitor’s office was the building in the background of the pool picture. After hearing comments that were made, I wouldn’t use the outdoor pool if you don’t want them watching you.

  • Jordan D says:

    The lounge has had a glow up since I stayed in September 2019. Off-set is that the food is now served, not self-service and by other comments the bar is too. But looks good.

  • Thrawn says:

    ” impressive canapé offering”

    Well ok, I guess it’s easy to feel impressed if the stay is sponsored.
    To other people (like myself) this might look rather disappointing.

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

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