Newcastle Photographer and Content Creator, Mandy Charlton, Always on a quest for adventure, often seen on buses, trains and planes. On a quest to be happier and healthier. Lives in Newcastle with her 3 cats, Iris, Maggie and Arthur. Loves good vibes, musicals and cakes. Full time professional wedding photographer in the north east of england alongside content creator on Tiktok, Instagram and Facebook

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Ibis Styles, St Andrews Square, Edinburgh, A Review

As some of you already know I got to be part of something special last week dear reader, I got to go to the Capture Ibis Styles event at the Ibis Styles hotel, Edinburgh Centre which is located in St Andrews Square, Edinburgh.  If you're not sure where that is then let me tell you that it's the square which runs just behind Princes Street right at the top near Waverley Station.

The Historic Scott Monument sits just a short walk from the hotel

Now I don't know about you but for the longest time whenever I arrive in Edinburgh and hear the piper who stands on the street corner just outside of the station my genetic code clicks into gear and tells me that I'm home, there's something quite special about the bagpipes, well I think so anyway.

So a short walk to my hotel and as I'd never stayed at an Ibis Styles before I wasn't really sure what to expect.

An easy check in and the most friendly welcome and up I went in the lift to my spacious room on the 5th floor, to find a tray of chocolates and a gift by my bed was not at all what I expected but what a lovely surprise.  Later when I was speaking with the manager I found out that Ibis Styles has a policy of a present for every child and coming soon, it will be a present for every guest, what a lovely touch, I don't know about you but those are the things that make you want to stay at a hotel repeatedly, going the extra mile is such an important thing.

The view from my window on the 5th floor, so pretty!
I noticed when I was checking in that they had a note about if you were travelling with your pet, it seems the whole Ibis chain is dog friendly and I can't wait to try out more of their hotels with Holly the Beagle, obviously I'm going to give you all a full review of the experience.

Back to last week though and one of the first things you notice about Ibis Styles is the styling, all of the hotels have a theme and are completely individual, something you don't expect to find in a hotel chain, especially one which still sells itself as being at the budget travel end of the spectrum.  The theme of the St Andrews Square Ibis Styles is, well I would personally call it Highland chic, I absolutely loved it because of course I am a huge fan of Scotland and my own house has lots of similar things.

Let me show you some of the things I loved - 

Being located in St Andrews square puts you right in the heart of the thriving bustling city that is Edinburgh and while I was there I was lucky to be able to do a lot of sight seeing including climbing to the top of Calton Hill, something despite visiting Edinburgh on lots of occasions I'd never done.  If you get a chance on your next visit to Edinburgh you must take an hour to climb Calton Hill, Edinburghs first public park has some of the best views of the city you've ever seen.

The thing is, that you don't need to go very far to discover all that is wonderful about Edinburgh, it's a bustling, energetic city and the streets are filled with entertainment.

So lets talk about the important things, firstly the food and drinks (always an important factor when I'm choosing to stay in a hotel), the chef at the Ibis Styles St Andrews Square really knows his stuff, I sampled local produce including Oysters, steak, cinnamon ice-cream with dry ice, I've never been quite so full up and even lunch the next day was a visual delight.

I perused their regular menus and along with a great selection of foods which would even keep fussy old, sugar free me happy I also noticed that food was very reasonable, expect to pay around £10 per main course or less!  The barman certainly also knows his stuff and though I only looked longingly at the cocktails I did sample a strawberry mojito at lunch on Friday and it tasted as good as it looked.

The bedrooms as I've already said are spacious, clean, modern and have lots of quirky design features and if you want to book something really special you can book a suite up on the 6th floor, beautiful, ultra spacious and wow, just look at the view.

A couple of the points of note about the hotel - 

Your stay is all inclusive, you pay one charge and you not only get your breakfast but they have a machine downstairs where you can get complimentary tea and coffee whenever you want and it's good coffee, I know, I sampled it!  You can even get it in a takeaway cup and what's better than saving you the cost of a trip to the local coffee house when you're on your way to sightsee!

Also included in the price is access to the internet in the lounge area and an all you can eat buffet breakfast which contained such delights as cereals, toast, danish pastries, continental meats and cheeses, you could quite easily have a big breakfast, take a coffee to go and be quite full until much later in the day leaving you more time for that all important trip to Edinburgh Castle or a climb up those 284 steps of the Scott Monument (and let me tell you, I've done that climb, it's epic, it hurts but the views at the top are totally worth it).

In conclusion, would I stay at the hotel again?  It's a huge yes from me, I am definitely going to go back with daughter Looby and Holly the beagle because I believe that any hotel who makes a fuss of my daughter and my dog is a hotel chain I would want to stay in again and again.


I must make the disclaimer that I received my room and all meals in exchange for this review but this is still my absolute and honest opinion.

Whilst there I was part of an event to Capture the quirky furniture of the Ibis Styles Edinburgh Central and I have a favour to ask... If I can get enough likes (on Instagram) I could win this amazing stool, so go click on it and you'll be able to give me a like and I'll send you a big squishy cyber hug.

Oh and 1 last thing, Ibis Styles don't have staff, they have Happy Mood Makers, that says it all really!


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