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23 Mayfield 4.5

Newington, Edinburgh, Scotland

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Review Summary

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  • Superbly maintained and beautifully finished period interiors
  • Welcoming ambience with warm, homey atmosphere
  • Outstanding breakfast with premium local products
  • Easy bus connections to Edinburgh's city center
  • Immaculate rooms with period charm and modern tech
  • Modern bathrooms with luxury toiletries, rain-showers, and robes
  • Spacious garden hot tub (during warmer months)
  • Cozy lounge with open fire and honesty bar
  • Free Wi-Fi


  • Set on main road away from tourist attractions
  • No on-site dining beyond breakfast

Bottom Line

The 23 Mayfield is a luxury bed-and-breakfast housed in an immaculately presented Victorian villa set about a mile south of Edinburgh's historical center. Period interiors are particularly impressive throughout, extending to eight charming rooms with hand-carved mahogany furnishings and, in some, views of Arthur's Seat. Breakfast is a real highlight and one of the best available in the city, while a cozy candle-lit lounge provides a superb setting for a nightcap. While rates are justifiably toward the higher end and the location isn't ideal for exploring the city on foot, this is certainly one of the finest guesthouses on offer in Edinburgh. 

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Beautifully presented Victorian villa with immaculate candle-lit interiors and rare antiques

This bed-and-breakfast occupies a handsome, detached Victorian villa whose 19th-century charm has been meticulously and tastefully maintained both inside and out. A garden path lined with sculpted shrubbery leads to a well-presented, typically Edinburgh sandstone facade and into splendidly restored interiors replete with original tiling, pretty stained glass windows, and ornate coving. A warm welcome from owner, Ross, adds to the homey, historical ambience created by abundant period details, from ornamental umbrella stands and antique books to Chesterfield sofas and gilt-framed etchings. Still, the property feels anything but fusty, with its fresh, clean, and, to some extent, modern undertone. Candlelight and glowing coal fires further contribute towards the cozy though high-end atmosphere that attracts vacationing couples looking for a bit of luxury. Despite its grown-up vibe, it's also popular with families with kids, and the lounge area has board games for all ages.


Set on main road about a mile south of Edinburgh's historical center

The guesthouse is situated on a main -- though not particularly noisy -- road in the Newington area of Edinburgh about a mile south of the city's historical center. While most tourist attractions aren't within walking distance, there are bus stops within a five minutes' walk that connect to the city center's Royal Mile in just over five minutes. Holyrood Park and the panoramic views from Arthur's Seat are accessible on foot for those who enjoy a bit of a hike (20 to 35 minutes), while for those with a car, Edinburgh Castle and its historical surrounds are within 10 minutes. 


Superbly finished rooms with period charm; some with four-poster beds and Arthur's Seat views

There are just eight rooms in all, each one individually decorated in smart, period styling with mahogany furnishings, handcrafted antiques, and spades of historical charm by way of ornate, gilt mirrors and stacks of old books. Some rooms are decked out with handsome, wood-paneled walls and others with superb, Jacobean four-poster beds, while all include luxurious linen bedding, flat-screen TVs, free Wi-Fi, and quality tea and coffee facilities -- the family room also provides a Nintendo Wii console. Bathrooms are all finished in natural-color travertine stone to a high standard, and have walk-in rain showers, premium Penhaligon products, and bathrobes. A few rooms offer views of Arthur's Seat, while others overlook the main road -- though traffic noise is not an issue. 


Outstanding Scottish breakfasts and spacious garden hot tub

As this is a bed-and-breakfast, there's not a great deal in the way of facilities. However there's a real emphasis on excellent breakfasts, which always include local products, such as Loch Fyne oak-smoked salmon and natural yogurt topped with Scottish Malt Whisky flambéed fruit -- served in an elegant dining room with coal fire and candles. The lounge with honesty bar also makes for a particularly cozy place to unwind in front of an open fire, while a spa tub in the rear garden provides bubbly relaxation -- and an iPod dock -- for up to seven adults (during warmer months). There are also board games for kids and adults in the lounge, including Scrabble and an oversize Connect Four. 

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23 Mayfield Gardens, Newington, Edinburgh EH9 2BX, United Kingdom

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