Prestonfield House Edinburgh, Dining Review, Images, Luxury Scottish Accommodation

Prestonfield House Edinburgh : Hotel

Hotel & Rhubarb Restaurant, Edinburgh, Scotland for James Thomson

Prestonfield House

Prestonfield House Hotel – Five Star info at base of page

Prestonfield House Hotel

Rhubarb Restaurant Review

“Tucked behind a swathe of Southside suburbia is a former Lord Provost’s white-rendered house, its double gables framed by mature trees”.

“you are swept into a cosetted luxury of colour and pattern, richly-furnished rooms and exquisite service”.

“We enjoyed Rhubarb immensely, we were pampered and the Hotel proved that it could really look after its guests”.

Prestonfield House reservations: 0131 225 7800 [email protected]

Scotland's Most Romantic Hotel
Rhubarb Restaurant: by Adrian Welch

Edinburgh’s super-opulent celebrity hideaway hotel, Prestonfield, has been named today as one of The World’s Best 101 Hotels by style-bible Tatler in their “guide to the ultimate in global glamour”. Prestonfield House Hotel PR at base of page.

Prestonfield House named AA Hotel of the Year 5 Oct 2004

Prestonfield House Hotel
Rhubarb Restaurant: by Adrian Welch

Prestonfield – Scotland’s most indulgent Hotel scoops “Hotel of the Year Award”

Prestonfield House: information 6 Oct 2004
Edinburgh’s most glamorous hotel, Prestonfield was named as Hotel of the Year by the AA in Scotland at a ceremony held in Glasgow today.

Scotland's Most Romantic Hotel
Prestonfield: exterior image from Prestonfield House Hotel

It is less than a year since Prestonfield opened with a star-studded dinner for the cast of the MTV music awards and already Prestonfield has scooped a clutch of awards of its own including being named as Scotland’s Most Romantic Hotel in Scotland and becoming the latest hotel in Scotland to receive the coveted 5 star hotel rating.

Recently described by the international travel bible Conde Nast Traveller Magazine as So extravagant it’s like walking onto the set of some flamboyant costume drama and by style bible Tatler as Divine decadence, Prestonfield has rapidly become one of the most talked-about hotels in the UK with an A-list following that includes Joan Collins, Minnie Driver, Billy Boyd and Vin Diesel among it’s fans.

Opulence, theatre and luxury have been combined in James Thomson’s quirky and stylish reworking of this A-listed seventeenth century mansion where minimalism is banished and maximalism rules! In addition to the 22 dramatic and luxurious bedrooms and sumptuous suites, there is a new destination restaurant – Rhubarb – alongside a collection of stunning private diningrooms and romantic salons.

Hotel of the Year, Scotland
Prestonfield: entry image from Prestonfield House Hotel

Every modern convenience including plasma TVs, Bose sound systems and air-conditioning has been hidden behind walls upholstered in opulent velvets or brocades. Other luxury touches include Venetian glass mosaic bathrooms, Champagne to welcome guests in each room and roaring log fires burning in the hotel’s many decadent salons.

Prestonfield’s owner James Thomson said, “Prestonfield is a uniquely individual and magical place that our guests just seem to love, so it is great to be recognised by the AA as their Hotel of the Year.

Luxury Edinburgh Hotel
Dining at Prestonfield – Rhubarb restaurant by Adrian Welch

We aimed to make Prestonfield a bold and distinctive alternative to the bland, uniform hotels that proliferate and to give visitors another great reason to visit Scotland. Prestonfield’s award is wonderful recognition for all of our team who have worked hard to create a distinctive destination hotel for Scotland and who work so hard to make every guest’s visit to Prestonfield exceptional.”

Jack Munro, Chief Executive of Edinburgh & Lothian’s Tourist Board commented, “I am delighted, but not surprised, that Prestonfield has achieved this prestigious Award. This is an enormous vote of confidence in James Thomson’s team at Prestonfield and further enhances Edinburgh’s reputation as a destination with an ever-growing portfolio of world class tourism products and services.”

Luxury Edinburgh Hotel
Prestonfield: interior image from Prestonfield House Hotel

Background to Prestonfield House Hotel:

James Thomson purchased the 17th century Prestonfield in a private deal late last year. Thomson also owns Edinburgh’s renowned Witchery by the Castle which celebrates its 25th Anniversary on Halloween this year and Edinburgh’s first and finest rooftop restaurant, the Tower Restaurant, located above the Museum of Scotland. When James Thomson opened the Witchery in 1979 it was with a staff of three, now a team of almost 300 work in his growing collection of unique venues and his first year’s turnover is achieved daily.

A lavish and extensive multi-million pound refurbishment has seen all Prestonfield’s rooms and public areas restored in his unique grand and opulent style that includes the most decadent individually decorated bedrooms, sumptuous private diningrooms, theatrical salons and Scotland’s most opulent restaurant – Rhubarb Restaurant.

Prestonfield House
Rhubarb Restaurant: dining image by Adrian Welch

Minutes from the Royal Mile Prestonfield House Hotel occupies an A-listed building surrounded by 20 acres of parkland adjacent to Holyrood Park.
The results of their in depth assessment of over 4,000 hotels will be published by the AA in the AA Hotel Guide 2005 on October 14. The AA have also awarded Prestonfield House a prestigious 4 Red Stars rather than standard black ones, membership of their UK Top 200 Hotels and 2 AA Rosettes for Rhubarb – the restaurant at Prestonfield

Prestonfield Hotel: reservations 0131 225 7800 [email protected]

Prestonfield House Hotel Information


Following an extensive programme of restoration and refurbishment, Prestonfield House has been named as Scotland’s Most Romantic Hotel in the recent Hotel of the Year Awards. This follows Prestonfield’s accolade as one of Tatler Magazines Top 20 Hotels for its Divine Decadence and confirms Prestonfield as Edinburgh’s most indulgent retreat.
Opulence, theatre and luxury are combined in James Thomson’s quirky and stylish reworking of this A-listed seventeenth century mansion where minimalism is banished and maximalism rules! In addition to the dramatic rooms and indulgent suites, there is his new destination restaurant – Rhubarb alongside a collection of stunning private diningrooms and romantic salons.

Prestonfield House Hotel
Rhubarb Restaurant: image from Prestonfield House Hotel

James Thomson, owner of the capital’s celebrated Witchery by the Castle and
rooftop Tower restaurants, recently acquired this historic 17th century mansion, which had been a hotel for fifty years. The purchase realised a long-held ambition, as when still a student Thomson had worked as a waiter at Prestonfield House, he fell in love with the magical place, and dreamt of one day becoming its owner.

Now, as one might expect from the team responsible for creating some of the
most unique and exciting hospitality destinations in the country, this marvellous old house has been distinctively re-styled to provide the ultimate retort to minimalism. The patina of age has been gently brushed away, its long forgotten splendours re-gilded and walls have been upholstered in opulent velvets or brocades. In addition to Prestonfield’s existing collection of fine art and antique furnishings, Thomson has added a wealth of suitably grand, precious and quixotic finds culled from the auction rooms of Europe.

Now, as the lights dim of an evening, log fires roar once more in the original hearths, and Diptyque’s tuberose fragrance fills the air, the atmosphere becomes gloriously decadent – possibly dissolute.
Individually designed bedrooms and suites at Prestonfield have state-of-the-art technology discreetly located amid their opulently furnished splendours. All are
air-conditioned, with high-speed internet access, Bose sound systems, DVD
players and 32” plasma televisions. Bed linens by Frette, luxurious bathrobes, fresh flowers and exclusive toiletries complete the pampering experience.
James Thomson says: ‘I am delighted to see Prestonfield recognised as the
opulent, indulgent and totally romantic place that it is. I wanted to restore the house to the glories of its heyday and to create an alternative to today’s plethora of bland, dull hotels – the perfect romantic retreat. The decor is every bit as rich and colourful as the history of the house itself – we hope our guests will be as colourful too.’
Peter Lederer CBE, Chairman, VisitScotland said ‘It is fitting that the achievements of those at the front line of the industry who are doing a great job should be recognised through the Scottish Hotel of the Year Awards.’
Prestonfield is situated only five minutes from Edinburgh’s finest shopping streets and the historic attractions of the Royal Mile. Yet, as the house is surrounded by twenty acres of parkland (which is home to a herd of highland cattle plus eighteen peacocks), it provides all the privacy of a country estate.

For further info on Prestonfield House Hotel please contact 0131 225 0976

Prestonfield House Hotel
Dining at Rhubarb by Adrian Welch

If you are interested in developments at Prestonfield:

Visit James Thomson’s Prestonfield House Hotel, Edinburgh’s most indulgent retreat at or enjoy a taste of Rhubarb at his latest highly-acclaimed restaurant at

Prestonfield House, Edinburgh
Pudding at Rhubarb by Adrian Welch

The Witchery by the Castle, Castlehill, The Royal Mile, Edinburgh
Prestonfield House, Priestfield Rd, Edinburgh

Direct line: +44 (0) 131 668 3403
Direct fax: +44 (0) 131 668 3976

Prestonfield House Hotel – 5 Star


Prestonfield House – Edinburgh’s most indulgent retreat, has just been awarded
rare and coveted 5-star hotel status. This confirms Prestonfield’s position as one of the most luxurious and pampering places to stay in the world.
The city’s most glamorous and stylish hotel, which opened its doors late last year to welcome the entire cast and stars of the MTV awards, including Dido, Minnie Driver and the Darkness for an exclusive eve-of-award gala dinner, has since developed a strong celebrity following with stars such as Joan Collins calling it ‘fabulous’ and regular fan Shirley Manson thinking it ‘incredible!’. Conde Nast Traveller Magazine recently described it as ‘so extravagant it’s like walking onto the set of some extravagant costume drama’
Prestonfield, the latest in a collection of unique places to eat or stay owned by Scottish hotelier and restaurateur James Thomson, has had an incredible year already, being dubbed ‘Edinburgh’s most indulgent retreat’ by Elle, as one of the 20 Hottest Hotels by Tatler and as the ‘Most Romantic Hotel in Scotland’ in the Hotel of the Year Awards. Now, following a series of anonymous inspections, VisitScotland have conferred the ultimate accolade of 5 stars on the city’s most talked-about hotel.
James Thomson, Prestonfield’s owner said ‘It has been a huge achievement by all involved to turn this faded gem of an hotel into one of the world’s most desirable places to stay and a major attraction for visitors to Scotland. Prestonfield has true star quality and we very much welcome seeing this reflected in the awarding of the maximum five stars from VisitScotland. Prestonfield and its restaurant Rhubarb are already developing a passionate
following and we look forward to welcoming guests for many years to come in true five-star style.’
Jack Munro, Chief Executive of Edinburgh & Lothian’s Tourist Board, commented: ‘This is a considerable achievement in the short space of time since James Thomson acquired the hotel and is testament to his ability and flair. To have another 5-star property in the city clearly enhances our reputation as a leading city break destination. We’re delighted that the hard work of the new team at Prestonfield has paid off with this award.’
Susan Watson, SE Edinburgh and Lothian’s tourism team leader, said:
‘Prestonfield House joins the elite of Scotland’s hospitality sector with its five star rating. It is a well deserved accolade for Prestonfield’s management and staff who have invested enormous effort in providing a quality experience for their guests that enhances Edinburgh and Scotland’s reputation as a world class destination.’
Prestonfield House Hotel – Five Star PR Aug 1 2004

James Thomson bought Prestonfield late last year in a private deal before
embarking on an ambitious £3m restoration of this A-listed mansion, now the city’s most indulgent retreat.
Prestonfield was built in 1687 as the grand home of a seventeenth-century Lord Provost of Edinburgh and a place for entertaining the glitterati of the day including David Hume, Benjamin Franklin, Dr Samuel Johnson, and his biographer, Boswell. Later Sandie Shaw walked barefoot across the marble floor of the front hall. Winston Churchill and Margaret Thatcher each dined at Prestonfield under the watchful eyes of early Dick-Cunyngham family portraits. Sean Connery, Elton John and Catherine Zeta Jones all partied the night away. And Oliver Reed raised the hell for which he was so very well known.
Now opulence, romance, theatre and luxury are combined in this stylish reworking of the hotel that now features every modern convenience – from plasma TV’s to air-conditioning – all hidden behind the velvet-lined walls of its ultra-luxurious rooms and suites.
Rhubarb, Thomson’s latest destination restaurant occupies two sensationally
grand Regency rooms central to the hotel that have variously been described
as ‘decadent’ and the ‘ultimate retort to minimalism.’;
James Thomson also owns and runs Edinburgh’s first and finest rooftop Tower
Restaurant above the Museum of Scotland and the city’s best-known
restaurant, the Witchery by the Castle. The Witchery celebrates its 25th
Anniversary later this year, an event which Thomson intends to mark with a
celebrity-packed gala dinner on Halloween that will raise funds for charitable initiative.

Edinburgh Walking Tours

Hotels Edinburgh

Prestonfield House Hotel in Edinburgh
Nov 2004


Experts at the new super-exclusive Mr & Mrs Smith guide to Europe’s sexiest locations have named Edinburgh’s 5-star Prestonfield as the only destination for lovers in Scotland and the only UK destination outside of London.

The Mr & Mrs Smith guide to European Cities has been described as ‘the ultimate guide to hip hotels’ by the Guardian and ‘A fantastic guide to the most stylish escapes’ by the Sunday Times. Mr & Mrs Smith’s experts included fashion designer Stella McCartney among the many reviewers that scoured thousands of hotels in a Europe-wide search for the 33 sexiest hotels in 14 cities throughout the continent.

Recently lavishly restored by its new owner James Thomson, Prestonfield has had an exceptional first year, winning coveted 5-star rating to make in Scotland’s latest top hotel, as well as being named as the Most Romantic Hotel in Scotland and by the AA as the Hotel of the Year in Scotland. World travel bible Conde Nast Traveller called it ‘So extravagant it’s like walking onto the set of some flamboyant costume drama’ and it is described as ‘possibly the most service-obsessed hotel I have ever visited…beyond swank’ in exclusive US-based Hampton’s Magazine. Since its star-studded opening for the cast of the MTV music awards, Prestonfield has attracted a celebrity following that includes screen star Joan Collins, Vin Diesel, Billy Boyd and Minnie Driver, as well as many guests in search of Scotland’s most indulgent and romantic retreat.

A multi million pound investment in the restoration has seen owner James Thomson create a stylish and ultra-opulent hotel within the unique setting of an A-listed historic mansion, built as the grand baroque home of Edinburgh’s Lord Provost in 1687. Guests now find every modern convenience – from high speed internet to huge plasma screens – hidden behind the velvet-upholstered walls of Scotland’s most indulgent rooms and suites. Prestonfield is also home to Rhubarb, Thomson’s latest destination restaurant and the most opulent to date (he also owns Edinburgh’s famous rooftop Tower & Witchery by the Castle restaurants).

Prestonfield’s owner, restaurateur and hotelier James Thomson said; ‘We are delighted that Edinburgh’s most indulgent retreat features in the ultimate hotel guide to Europe’s elite & stylish hotels. It is an exceptional guide that features only exceptional hotels, so we are delighted to see Prestonfield recognised as one of the finest in Europe and to see the city of Edinburgh feature among Europe’s most romantic destinations. Mr & Mrs Smith is a uniquely bold, colourful and sassy guide that perfectly reflects the indulgent, opulent and quirky character of Prestonfield and of the other exceptional hotels it features.’

The Mr & Mrs Smith European Cities collection is published by Spy Publishing It is the successor to the Mrs & Mrs Smith UK/Ireland book which featured Prestonfield’s sister restaurant-with-rooms, the Witchery by the Castle

Membership of Europe’s most elite collection of hotels marks an exceptional first anniversary for Prestonfield House after its stylish reworking and massive investment by new owner James Thomson. In an exceptional first year Prestonfield gained coveted 5-star hotel status, was named as the AA’s Hotel of the Year, as Romantic Hotel of the Year, as one of the AA’s Top 200 Hotels and as one of the UK’s hottest 20 Hotels by style-bible Tatler.
Prestonfield has just 24 highly individual and luxurious rooms and suites, all decorated in Prestonfield’s trademark opulent and indulgent style.

Rates start at just £195 per room per night, inclusive of VAT, newspapers, Prestonfield’s full Scottish breakfast and a complimentary bottle of Pol Roger Champagne. Prestonfield House – Reservations 0131 225 7800

As well as romantic beds, marble and Venetian mosaic bathrooms all rooms feature the latest technology from CD & DVD players to wi-fi internet and 32″ plasma TVs.

Rhubarb – the restaurant at Prestonfield House Hotel is James Thomson’s most opulent to date, with huge gilded chandeliers dominating the pair of grand regency oval rooms that it occupies.

Prestonfield House has a number of striking public rooms including the baroque 17th-century Tapestry room, a room lined entirely in leather and a collection of exquisite panelled private diningrooms.

James Thomson conceived Prestonfield House as ‘a compelling alternative to today’s plethora of bland and unexceptional hotels and yet another great reason to visit the magical city of Edinburgh’
Prestonfield’s owner and creator James Thomson was recently given the ultimate award for tourism – a VisitScotland Silver Thistle bestowed on owner James Thomson by First Minister Jack McConnell and was described by Time Out as ‘Edinburgh’s star restaurateur’.

The Witchery by the Castle recently celebrated its landmark 25th Anniversary with a gala dinner hosted by James Thomson that raised sufficient funds to help charity Sight Savers International restore the sight of over 3,000 children in Bangladesh.

Prestonfield House Hotel Award

22 Nov 2004

Prestonfield Edinburgh: Tatler Award

Edinburgh’s super-opulent celebrity hideaway hotel, Prestonfield, has been named today as one of The World’s Best 101 Hotels by style-bible Tatler in their ‘guide to the ultimate in global glamour’.

In Tatler’s glossy guide to the most indulgent places to stay in the world, Prestonfield House Hotel features alongside the world’s most famous and star-studded hotels, including the Ritz, the Cipriani in Venice, the Crillon in Paris and the Bel Air in Los Angeles.

Tatler described Edinburgh’s Prestonfield as having “opulence with sophistication”, urging readers to “Forget minimalism for a blissful moment and indulge in leather silk and velvet” whilst noting that a stay at Prestonfield Hotel was like ‘living in one of Vivienne Westwood’s dresses.’
Tatler’s verdict – ‘Overblown should never be underrated!’

Prestonfield House has been lavishly refurbished by new owner James Thomson in the decadent and dramatic style that became his trademark style when creating the famous Witchery by the Castle in Edinburgh. Now the stylishly reworked Prestonfield Hotel has become Scotland’s most talked-about hotel, with an A-list following that includes Minnie Driver, Beyonce, Shirley Manson, Vin Diesel, Bryan Ferry and Joan Collins among its many fans. Prestonfield is also home to Rhubarb, Thomson’s latest destination restaurant and the most opulent to date!

When he purchased Prestonfield House last year James Thomson said he hoped to create an hotel that was “an antidote to the bland uniformity of hotels, that would put back the fun and glamour into a hotel stay.”

Following the Tatler awards, Prestonfield House’s owner James Thomson said ‘Tatler have sought out a unique collection of the most glamorous hotels in the world and it is wonderful to see Prestonfield and Edinburgh feature alongside the world’s great destinations. Edinburgh is the most beautiful and romantic city in Europe, so we are delighted that even more visitors will discover Scotland’s charms when they come and indulge in Prestonfield’s utterly decadent experience.’

Jack Munro, Chief Executive of the Edinburgh and Lothians Tourist Board, said: ‘It is beyond dispute that Prestonfield has become one of the most elegant and stylish hotels in the United Kingdom. James Thomson and his team continue to earn the respect and admiration of some of the most demanding critics and this latest acknowledgement, from Tatler/Abercrombie and Kent, is a further reminder of just how far the hotel has come in only a short time. Prestonfield’s success is good news for Edinburgh and good news for Scottish tourism.’

Prestonfield House Hotel information – 6 Dec 2004

Other James Thomson restaurants:

The Witchery Hotel

The Secret Garden Restaurant

The Tower Restaurant

Edinburgh Hotel

Edinburgh Restaurants

Hotel Missoni Edinburgh

Comments / photos for the Prestonfield House Hotel page welcome

Prestonfield House Hotel – Building