Scotland’s iconic hotel, located at No 1 Princes Street in Edinburgh, updates its events spaces as owner Rocco Forte celebrates its 20th Anniversary

The Balmoral Hotel – located at Edinburgh’s most prestigious address – has unveiled a refreshed look for its events spaces following a multimillion-pound refurbishment.

The five-star property has updated its events suites as part of a “timeless yet contemporary” modernisation project to appeal to the MICE and weddings market.

Interior designer Olga Polizzi, Rocco Forte Hotels’ Director of Building & Design, and sister to Sir Rocco Forte, sought to emphasise the traditional features of the building as part of a refresh in keeping with its original style; the hotel is one of Scotland’s most recognised landmarks and its majestic clock tower dominates the capital’s skyline, while its castle views are some of the city’s most coveted.

Focusing on these views, the hotel’s three main function rooms – Sir Walter Scott, Princes and Holyrood Suites – have undergone a restyle to offer a refined and authentic Edinburgh experience for banquets, weddings, showcases, training and conferences.

Richard Cooke, The Balmoral’s General Manager, said: “The new-look event suites are classic, elegant and timeless. As always, Olga Polizzi’s touch brings new life to the spaces while shining the spotlight on both their period features and their castle views. I always say to guests that we offer a ‘view with a room’, and thanks to this sensitive decorative upgrade the eye is instantly drawn outside. The result is that every event in The Balmoral has a true sense of place.”

When embarking on the redesign, Olga’s main purpose was to enhance and emphasise the grandeur and large proportions of the rooms, highlighting their “neo-Renaissance architectural detailing such as the original cornicing, high ceilings and windows,” the hotel said in a media release.

It said: “Each has a botanical and organic feel thanks to the wallpapers and carpets used throughout; each element selected to reflect the Scottish landscape. A long-standing advocate for home-grown talent, Olga Polizzi has incorporated a number of British brands throughout the redesign. The rooms are timeless yet contemporary, with hints of silvers, golds and green interlaced throughout the suites, a colour scheme chosen as the ideal foil for any event or theme.”

The Sir Walter Scott Suite boasts 3,774 sq. ft of events space and overlooks the Sir Walter Scott monument, the largest dedicated to a writer in the world.

Intricate gilding has been used to complement the dark and light greens of the patterned carpet in the room while the ‘Blackberry’ wallpaper is designed by Neisha Crosland. The Edinburgh mural on the back wall has been conceived to ‘bring the outside inside’ as part of a contemporary edge to its theming.

In the Holyrood suite (1,674 sq. ft.), neutral silvers, blues and green have been used to best accentuate the natural light that fills the double aspect room, with gilded mirrors and chandeliers adding to the ‘sense of occasion’ in a room aimed primarily at the weddings market.

The Princes Suite (1,092 sq. ft.) is bright with a gold, yellow and silver theme and a period fireplace providing a focal point for the room. Opulent Jim Thompson fabrics sit alongside curtains from James Hare.

Layout options include theatre, school room, U-shape, boardroom, cocktail, formal banquet and banquet rounds. The Princes Suite is the most intimate space available hosting up to 120 guests; the Holyrood Suite can accommodate up to 200 for cocktails and the Sir Walter Scott Suite can cater from 60 in a boardroom set-up to 450 for cocktails.