“ Address: 16 George Street / Edinburgh / EH2 2PF Scotland „
Le Monde is an Edinburgh boutique hotel/restaurant/bar/nightclub. As the name suggests, each part of Le Monde represents somewhere else in the world. The oriental-themed Shanghai nightclub is a draw for locals, tourists and residents alike because of the trendy and chic image that it carries.
Inside the main building, there are three distinct sections: Vienna, Milan and Paris. Vienna and Milan are on the ground floor and are decorated stylishly with bar and waiting staff that will make you feel comfortable and relaxed.
Paris is up a flight of stairs and is a little darker than its ground-floor relatives. Decorated heavily in red, the atmosphere is instantly more romantic than the ground floor and, as this floor is mainly used for evening dinner, this is entirely appropriate.
The food itself is always served to a very high standard and there is a wide variety of styles, so there should be something there for everyone. I have eaten here both as part of a large group as well as a couple and both experiences, although clearly very different, were both equally enjoyable.
The drinks menu covers the whole spectrum of expense, going from affordable filler-drinks all the way through to expensive bottles of fine champagne, obviously going via the whole range of cocktails - I can recommend the French Martini. Speaking of cocktails, the bar also runs cocktail classes for the public which are always very popular and they fill up very quickly so get in there sharp if that is your thing.
All in all, Le Monde is a brilliant, stylish and chic place to be. Situated on Edinburgh's George Street, it is surrounded by plush bars and restaurants and affluent and friendly clientele . It is well worth a visit.
Saturday 18th October 2008. Breakfast in Glasgow, drove to Edinburgh, lunch in Vienna, drinks in Milan, dinner in Paris, partied in Shanghai then bed in Cairo. Sounds like a jet set lifestyle, but it was just a night in Le Monde hotel in Edinburgh.
WHAT IS IT?
Le Monde is a small boutique 4 star hotel in Edinburgh's George Street with only 18 suites. Le Monde, as you may know, is French for 'The World' and this hotel truly does represent the world, with each room, restaurant, bar and nightclub named after a city.
Since opening in the spring of 2006 the hotel has won many awards, including the Scottish Hotel Design Award in 2006, the BEDA Club of the Year and the Hotel Club of the Year.
A stay at this hotel can be booked online or by telephoning the hotel directly. Unfortunately, you cannot request to stay in any particular room, as the rooms are allocated on the day of arrival. We booked our stay over the telephone and found the receptionist to be very friendly and helpful. We also managed to get a small discount compared to the online price.
Unfortunately with the street works in Edinburgh at the moment for the installation of the new tram network, finding the hotel wasn't that easy, even with sat nav. The hotel also has no car park, with only on street car parking available, however this is only free between 6.30pm and 8am. The nearest car park is approx 5 minutes away at the St James Shopping Centre. Although the car park is not open 24 hours, cars can be parked overnight. However it cost me £19 to park from 1.30pm to about 11am the next day.
We stayed in the Cairo room, which as you would expect from the room name was Egyptian themed, although not overly so. There was some ornate wood panelling on one wall and an Egyptian styled light shade, along with some ornately carved furniture.
Being a suite, we had a separate living area and bedroom area, although this was open plan. Both areas had a large LCD TV, with the lounge TV being connected to a DVD player. Nintendo Wii's are available for hire from reception for £10 per night, along with a variety of games. Similarly, a range of DVDs and CDs are available from reception.
The bathroom was large with a double shower cubicle and a bath with more then enough room for 2 people. The bathroom was very modern, with a glass sink and shaded glass door.
As normal with hotel rooms, there were in room tea making facilities, however instead of a kettle, each room has Tassimo tea and coffee machines, which was a nice change, however we had no instructions for use and found the machine quite tricky to use. We also only had one tea capsule for a room for two people, and we were informed by reception that they had run out of tea capsules, so we were told to order tea when required through room service and that this would be complimentary.
The room had good storage facilities, having three wardrobes, and 4 large drawers, although we had only four hangers. The room also had a king size bed that was very comfy, but only had two pillows that offered no support. Additional pillows were available from reception, but I ended up using the cushions from the corner suite for additional support.
Lighting in the room was controlled by buttons located throughout the room, which allowed lights to be dimmed or turned on or off at the touch of a button.
First impressions of the room were that is was a little smaller than expected, however it was well furnished and clean. On closer inspection, some of the paintwork could have done with some touching up, and there were quite a few water marks on the ceiling as if there had previously been water leaks from the room above.
Each of the other 17 suites are named after cities, including New York, LA and .... Each room is individually styled to reflect the city it is named after.
EATING AND DRINKING
The hotel has two bars (Vienna and Milan), a restaurant (Paris) and a nightclub (Shanghai) meaning that you can have a full nights entertainment without leaving the comfort of the hotel. The bars and restaurants all serve the same menu, which is also available as a room service menu.
Milan is the first bar as you enter the hotel. This is a small bar, but it perfectly suited for having a coffee and watching the world go by outside.
Vienna is situated just a little further back into the building. This is a larger bar that does a range of cocktails and has a number of booths situated around the central bar.
Paris is located on the first floor and is a more intimate setting for romantic meals. I believe that the Paris restaurant is only open at weekends, or for special events during the week.
The food was very fresh and tasty, and not too expensive given both the surroundings and the accommodation prices. The menu has been inspired by a variety of cultures from around the world, hence you'll find haggis next to curries on the menu - certainly something to satisfy everybody's hunger.
As you would expect from a boutique hotel such as this, a stay at this hotel does not come cheap. Our room, Cairo, is a Junior Suite and normally costs £305 a night at weekends, with Executive rooms around £250 a night.
Would I go back? I would go back for something to eat and drink the next time I'm in Edinburgh, but I doubt I would stay again. Despite the hotel being decorated to a very high standard, a few small things did let the hotel down, such as the lack of tea. The room was expensive; however you are paying for the experience of the themed rooms.
In saying that, I've always said I'll take my partner to New York - perhaps a stay at the New York suite at Le Monde may be more affordable than the real Big Apple.
Le Monde Hotel,
16 George St
44 (0)131 270 3900
This review may also appear on Hotel Review Scotland.
5 star luxury hotel.