in Your Country’s Best 13-01-2011
in Unique Buildings of the World 25-05-2011
Camera: Canon EOS 400D
This image was taken whilst approaching the North Bridge in Edinburgh, Scotland, looking over towards the Balmoral Hotel. Resulting from a competition of 1895, the hotel originally opened in 1902. It was designed by architect W. Hamilton Beattie and for most of the twentieth century was known as the North British Hotel or simply the N.B., a traditional railway hotel built for the North British Railway Company adjacent to their Waverley Station. It kept the same name until the late 1980s when it was renamed the Balmoral Hotel after refurbishment, despite being located over 100 miles south of Balmoral Castle. Edinburgh residents managed to retain the “NB” nickname by the popular but entirely colloquial suggestion that this stood for “New Balmoral”. For travellers arriving by train, the hotel provided comfortable and elegant lodgings, before they continued their journeys. To assist passengers in reaching their train on time, the hotel tower’s clock, visible from a considerable distance away, is traditionally set to be two minutes fast. The clock tower, at 58m high, forms a prominent landmark in Edinburgh’s city centre. The building’s architecture is Victorian, influenced by the traditional Scottish baronial style. Sadly it was stripped of most of its ornamental stone balconies in its refurbishment, and whilst remaining ornate, is visibly “scarred”. An additional bit of trivia is the fact that In February 2007 it was confirmed that author J. K. Rowling finished the last book in the Harry Potter series, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows at this hotel. Rowling left a signed statement written on a marble bust of Hermes in her room saying; “JK Rowling finished writing Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows in this room (652) on 11th Jan 2007”.