Glasgow is one of Scotland’s most vibrant cities. If you are looking spend a little time here, what can you expect for one of the city’s most luxurious hotels?
Renowned for being aesthetically pleasing and offering fantastic service my husband and I opted to stay at the Blythswood Square Hotel to celebrate a, “big birthday.” Through the hotel’s official website I booked a, ‘Dinner, Bed and Breakfast’ deal which included a standard room, a three course meal in the restaurant, full English and Buffet breakfast and access to the hotel leisure facilities all in the region of £200. This might seem a lot for a single night stay however, the package inclusions such as the three course meal (including one drink per person) and extensive breakfast made this a really good deal. The website is very easy to navigate (which I love) and if you sign up to their email listing they will send you regular messages of deals and events they are hosting throughout the year.
The hotel can be found in Glasgow’s vibrant city centre on the edge of Blythswood Square itself. It is easy to reach being only an eleven minute walk from both Glasgow Central Station and Glasgow Queen Street station. Taxis are easy to flag down – circulating the area often – and the doorman or reception staff are happy to help with this if needed. The area is close to all the major eating, drinking points and shopping of Glasgow – Buchanan Street aka, ‘The Style Mile’ is only a ten minute walk. If you want to venture away from the city centre the trendy West End area of the city can be easily reached via the underground (nearest is Buchanan Street) or is eleven minutes in a taxi. The Kings Theatre and Theatre Royal are also nearby and can both be reached in under ten minutes by foot. If you wish to use the city as a base and venture even further afield bus and train links to the capital city of Edinburgh or to the West Coast towns of Ayrshire and regular and accesible.
The hotel is described on the official website as being, “an oasis in one of Britain’s most engaging cities” and I have to say, I agree. You certainly feel like you are stepping into another world at the Blythswood; one of luxury, glamour and indulgence. The Herald Newspaper once hailed the venue as, “Scotland’s favourite playground for the rich” and whilst this may be the case, the hotel certainly doesn’t feel pretentious or un-inclusive. The whole vibe of the place is welcoming and friendly.
The building itself is of classical, Georgian design and mirrors the others that surround it on the square. This is certainly a popular, thriving area and many of the surrounding buildings are undergoing massive renovations and works such as this project being undertaken by Glasgow based Architect firm McGinlay-Bell. The period nature of the building adds to the glamour of the Blythswood. It is adorned with large windows and doors and sculptured trees are positioned at various points along the road. On arriving, we were greeted by a well-dressed, friendly doorman who welcomes you to the hotel and directs you to reception – a standard feature of the hotel. The lobby is a wide and open space with classical design features and elegant furnishings. There are marble floors, decorative columns, crystal chandeliers and long, heavy drapes framing the windows. There are various seating areas for residents to relax in or wait comfortably whilst they check-in or out. Unique features can be found throughout this hotel like the alcoves lined with velvet materials and fringing or the subtle nods to Scottish heritage – tartan fabrics, sprigs of heather and photographic prints of Glasgow people and places.
The hotel offers four different styles of bedroom for guests to choose from: guest, superior, deluxe and suites. One of the suits includes the exclusive penthouse which features a private bar, a dining room and private terrace. Whilst the other rooms in the hotel don’t quite have the same extravagance as this they do offer guests their own little haven of lxuruy. All rooms contain flat-screen TVs, a mini bar, ample storage and a seating area in addition to the comfortable beds. The decor palette of the room we stayed in was another nod to the Scottish location of this hotel – purple trimmings, tweed accents and another historical photographic print above the bed.
If like me you think bathrooms are a true testament to the quality of a hotel (or restaurant) then you won’t be disappointed here. The bathroom is adorned with marble from top to bottom, has a large mirror above the vanity, ambient lighting and a large, marble-surrounded bathtub. The large shower and toilet area meanwhile are situated in their own alcove.
Eating and Dining
As stated early this overnight start included a “dining offer” which is an allocation of £30 per person towards the A la Carte menu in the ‘Restaurant at Blythswood Square’. This also include a glass of fizz each. The menu itself actually offers a wide range of choice which is fantastic as it can often be the case that dinner, bed and breakfast offers are quite limited – click here for their most up-to-date A la Carte menu. During our stay opted for the chicken liver pate to start followed by a tomato and chorizo gnocchi. Both dishes were full of flavour and of ample portion size. To finish off the meal I decided on a salted caramel brownie with popcorn trimmings. This was by far my favourite part of the meal. The brownie was delicious – it melted in the mouth and you could taste both the chocolate and caramel without one overpowering the other.
Following the meal we each opted to have a coffee and were delighted at the token gesture the hotel offered us in a nod to the special occasion we were there celebrating – a plate of hand-made chocolate and tablet adorned with the words, “happy birthday” in decorative handwriting. These little touches are what make the difference when you stay somewhere I feel. It was lovely that they acknowledged the occasion and made us feel like they were interested in us a guests without being too intrusive.
We finished off our meal with a drink in the restaurant however, guests do have the option of heading upstairs to the ‘The Salon’ – a lovely space featuring an extensive cocktail list and accompanying piano music.
Another feature of this overnight deal was the inclusion of a full Scottish breakfast. One of my favourite parts of staying at any hotel is the breakfast – I am always so dissapointed if it doesn’t live up to my hopes and expectations. Luckily, this time around I wasn’t to be disappointed. The breakfast was fantastic. There was so much on offer that it would be difficult not to find something you wanted to try. Guest could opt for a full cooked breakfast or indulge in pastries, yogurts, cereals, fruits and other continental delights. Tea and coffee were on offer and refilled frequently and speciaility items could also be made by the chefs on request. Breakfast was severed in the same restaurant space as dinner but this time had a nice, morning buzz about it. We made our way through our breakfast at ease before checking out and heading to some of the shops and sights Glasgow had to offer.
Spa and Gym Facilities
The hotel offers a state-of the art gym and spa facilities that they refer to as, ‘The Thermal Experience.The hotel promises to have you feeling, “refreshed and rejuvenated” after visiting their luxury treatment rooms or thermal suites. There two relaxation pools, a crystal steam room, a lounge area and even a cafe. We didn’t make use of the gym or spa facilities on this particular trip as we were rather pressed for time. However, these areas are very popular with residents as are the a wide array of spa treatments on offer; it would be worth booking these ahead of your arrival if you would like to have them. Remember, many people who are not staying at the hotel also book into the spa for treatments alone. It is also worth noting that access to the, ‘Thermal Experience’ is complimentary to hotel guests between the hours of 7am-9am and 6pm-9pm; outwith these hours an entry charge is applied.
Overall, we had a wonderful stay at the Blythswood Square Hotel and it is certainly somewhere I would recommend staying on your next trip to Glasgow.