The best private dining rooms in Edinburgh

  • The List
  • 3 September 2014
Edinburgh's private dining rooms

The Whisky Collection / credit: Scotch Whisky Experience

Seven memorable venues for bespoke dining occasions in Edinburgh

Merge Edinburgh's reputation as a fine food destination with its historic buildings and dramatic architecture, and the opportunity to eat well in some truly distinctive venues is there to be grabbed. We highlight some of the most distinctive private dining rooms around town.

The Boardroom - National Museum of Scotland, Chambers Street

Up to 24 can dine in this room situated in the National Museum's distinctive round tower overlooking George IV Bridge and Greyfriars. Around a circular burr maple wood table, diners can take in a fabulous view of the Castle, with menus available from a choice of caterers.

The Commissioners' Room - Signet Library, Parliament Square

Set in the heart of Scottish affairs beside the High Court and St Giles, the Signet Library was described as 'the finest drawing room in Europe' by King George IV in 1822. While the Lower Library sees service each Festival as the pop-up Pommery Champage Bar and houses the Gran Caffè through the year, more intimate private dining is available in the Commissioners' Room with its blazing fire, stern portraits and oak bookcases lined with antiquarian texts.

The David Douglas Room - Gateway Restaurant, Royal Botanic Gardens

The David Douglas Room is named after the famous Botanist who gave his name to the Douglas Fir. Accommodating up to 40, the glass walls of the room at one end of the new John Hope Gateway building looks out onto the trees and lawns of the Botanic Gardens, with doors leading from the dining room onto a wide terrace and balcony. The outlook can be even more spectacular in the winter months when the trees shed their foliage and the Edinburgh skyline is revealed.

Great Hall - Modern Two, Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, Belford Road

The centrepiece of Modern Two, the smaller of the two Modern Art galleries set in landscaped sculpture parks to the northeast of the city centre, is the towering double-story sculpture of Vulcan by Eduardo Paolozzi in the Great Hall. Dining for up to 30 can be arranged in this gallery, with meals preceded by a private view of the unique collection of Surrealist art including works by Dali, Picasso and Miro.

The Officer's Wardroom - Royal Yacht Britannia, Leith

When Britannia was in service, the Wardroom was where the ship's 20 Officers would assemble to dine, often formally attired and sometime with a Royal Marine band providing some musical accompaniment. Today, parties of 8-18 can hire the room and enjoy a tasting menu created by Britannia's Executive Chef, Mark Alston.

Salon Privée - Prestonfield

There are few more intimate private dining rooms in Edinburgh than the Salon Privée at Prestonfield, with a capacity of just two. Accessed via a turret stair in the magnificent Baronial building, it's decorated as decadently as one would expect for one of James Thomson's imaginative and luxurious properties. While you dine, a dedicated servitor is on hand just a bell-call away.

The Whisky Collection - The Scotch Whisky Experience, Castlehill

Dine under the Swarovski Chandelier with amber-toned light diffusing through the world's largest whisky collection: nearly 3500 bottles of whisky that line the black marble and glass vault at the heart of the Scotch Whisky Experience at the top of the Royal Mile. The Whisky Collection dining space can cater for up to ten diners, with menus and drinks lists individually crafted for each event by Executive Head Chef David Neave.