Emtalks | Beauty, Fashion, Travel, Fitness and Lifestyle Blog


Sunday, 31 July 2016

How To Spend A Weekend In Edinburgh

uk blogger
Hey hey hey! Hope you're all doing very well today on this lovely Sunday. Last week I spent the most amazing weekend in Edinburgh and I wanted to talk to you about what we got up to and generally talk about how to spend a weekend in Edinburgh/how we spent our weekend in Edinburgh! In true me style, there was a lot of eating. Any excuse to take you guys along with me! Let's discuss...

We jumped on a Virgin East Coast train on Friday evening as soon as Matt finished work. I  use Virgin East Coast pretty much three times a week getting to and from London so it was nice to be heading away with Matt for a romantic weekend rather than a working week! Unfortunately, the trains were all delayed that evening due to problems in Kings Cross but eventually, we arrived in Edinburgh! Luckily, we decided to travel in first class so it didn't really matter that we were delayed as it was so comfortable. I feel like my journeys to and from London would be so much more enjoyable and relaxing if I was in first class, the service is so much better and there's so much more room. You get food, snacks, water, alcohol - it really got us in a relaxed mood and I cannot believe how friendly the staff were. The route was so scenic, we watched the sun set and went past a few beaches in Scotland (I must go back and explore them!).

I've only been in Edinburgh once for a wedding years ago and didn't really get to see any of the actual city so I was really excited to be heading there. We stayed in the most gorgeous apartment which was booked through Coulters Property, they do short term and long term lets (you can find this particular one on Air BnB as well).  This isn't sponsored, they just looked after us extremely well and I cannot recommend them enough. I've never stayed in an Air BnB but we had a last minute panic because all the hotels in Edinburgh were full up on this particular weekend - it's a busy little place! Luckily, Coulters came to the rescue with the most unbelievable pad we've ever seen.

The property doesn't really need much explaining, it's just beautiful - set over two floors. It's given me some serious interior inspiration for when I get my own house hopefully sooner rather than later.

Obviously all the beauty essentials came with me, including this beautiful personalised make up bag from Ciate, the new Sarah Chapman travel range, my Kiehl's oils (I don't go anywhere without them, if you watched my skincare routine video you'll know that!), my Charlotte Tilbury Instant Look palette as it's perfect for travel, it has everything in it you could possibly need, a Tom Ford nude lipstick, Sonic Chic travel toothbrush, Si by Armani, Zoeva make up brushes - they're incredible, Guerlain bronzer (it comes everywhere with me). You can also see the new Ciate mascara which makes my lashes so long, obsessed. I couldn't not take my Elemis micellear water, I feel like it double cleanses my skin perfectly, and lots more but I love giving you a little look into what made it into my travel bag - in my case, a lot!

louboutin very prive
I made myself at home and obviously brought my Loubs along with me. You may remember them from my graduation blog post, you can read that here if you missed it.

uk travel and lifestyle blogger

 I got ready for dinner and put on my new dress (online here, similar here and here) - you can shop the dress below. That evening, we headed out for cocktails. We headed to George Street and went to some bars there, TigerLily was beautiful. I didn't take any photos I'm afraid as I didn't want to take my camera to a rowdy bar!

hula edinburgh

The next morning, we headed for a walk around the Grass Market area of Edinburgh. Think beautiful, old style streets, full of stunning little boutique shops and cafes. Such a beautiful place to get lost and wander around. We headed to Hula after many recommendations for some breakfast. It was lovely to sit outside and eat some healthy-ish cake. Unfortunately the service was majorly slow but the place itself was so lovely, it's great for people watching if you sit outside too.

hula cafe edinburghMy phone case was made by myself on Case Station, it's so pretty for Summer. 

We spent the day wandering around beautiful streets and shopping. Edinburgh is really quite small so you can get round it quite quickly. I'd recommend George Street for shopping and then Mulberry Walk which is where Harvey Nichols and more high end shops are.

We headed back to our beautiful apartment (9 Blenheim Place) and got ready for lunch. I wore my trusty Topshop jeans - they fit so well, Chanel espadrilles and my new Wildfox top. 

martin wishart
We jumped in an Uber to Leith (about 10 minutes from Edinburgh city centre) to have lunch at Martin Wishart's restaurant. It was a really good experience with it being a Michelin Star, but, as it's all about the service and we went for a tasting menu, it took up most of our afternoon so if you are going to go, make sure you leave some time to sight-see as we found ourselves rushing! Luckily, Uber taxis work in Edinburgh too so we headed straight back to the shops after we'd eaten (promo code EMTALKS15 on the Uber app gets you a free £15 ride by the way!).

The tasting menu is such an amazing experience and one I really would recommend if you're into fine dining and have the time to try this place. The service was outstanding and every course tasted delicious, particularly the beef. We were more than full by the end of it because each course is staggered and they kept refilling our bread (the olive bread is probably the nicest bread I've ever tasted).

As if the main wasn't good enough, we chose from the cheese trolley and then had desserts to come. 

This is probably one of the best desserts I've ever had, salted caramel - perfectly soft, smooth but with a delicious crunch. 

Just when we thought it was time to go, we were surprised with a box of handmade truffles and fresh, hot from the oven doughnuts to push our bellies and taste sensations over the edges. I totally understand why this place gets booked up ahead for dinner - it was rammed when we visited in the afternoon for lunch. It really is a must do for any luxury food lovers. 

With very full and very happy bellies ,we headed back to the shops. 

After a little more sight-seeing (so many beautiful things to see in Edinburgh) we headed back to get ready for the evening. 

As I got ready in our beautiful apartment, we played music from my new portable speaker (it's so beautiful!) I got it from CaseStation and cannot recommend it enough if you're out and about and travelling. My life is CaseStation at the moment, they do the best portable chargers too, my phone always dies when I'm out on day trips vlogging so I highly recommend them for all your techy needs!

I wore my Louboutins and this dress for dinner. You can get similar online here and here and more below! Bardot dresses are my absolute favourite at the moment. I got my hair blow dried on the Friday at Sassoon Leeds and somehow, Saturday evening, train journeys, car journeys and rain later, it still looked nice and bouncy. I told you they're amazing at blow dries at Sassoon! I know I say it all the time, but one day, I will go there three times a week for my blow dries. They make me feel like a new woman, every single time. It's crazy how one little blow dry can boost your confidence so much!

ondine edinburgh

We headed out for dinner at Ondine, apparently the best seafood restaurant in Edinburgh. We had heard such amazing things about Ondine so were seriously excited to eat here. The service from the onset was incredible, as were the delicious oysters. My favourite had to be the crispy coated ones though.

We had a huge fish platter for dinner, I actually really enjoyed it, the squid and lobster were easily my favourites though. 

We were absolutely stuffed but still managed dessert. Such delicious, large dessert too! After Ondine, we headed out for drinks with some friends in Edinburgh. We unfortunately didn't get the chance to visit The Dome which was highly recommended! But, we did manage to tick two pretty epic eateries off our large Edinburgh list, Ondine and Martin Wishart, both of which I cannot recommend enough. Edinburgh is full of amazing eateries and unfortunately, in such a short space of time, we couldn't cram them all in so we must go back. 

I woke up the next morning feeling exhausted and pretty ill so we cancelled our breakfast reservation and just ate in our bed instead! That's the beauty of staying in a house.

Once I managed to get out of that beautiful bed, we wandered down the Royal Mile, we didn't get the chance to walk up Arthur's Seat for amazing views of Edinburgh due to the rain and the clouds, another one for the must do list.

We jumped in another Uber and went straight to One Spa at the Sheraton hotel. We had booked in a day pass at the spa because we wanted to mix the weekend up with shopping, sight seeing and obviously wanted to try out a good spa too. The staff were incredible at the Sheraton, I've never stayed at a Sheraton before but it was so lovely inside. 

We both headed to the gym first, both kitted out in all JD sports. Matt is in love with his new trainers. I wore my Pink Soda of course.  If you're interested in what I do at the gym, you can watch my work out videos here (you can do them at home too!). 

one spa edinburgh

one spa hydro pool edinburghIt's pretty much impossible to take photos in a spa but take my word for it, One Spa is epic. A sensory/relaxing experience with loads of different saunas, steam rooms, scents, temperatures - you name it. From eco saunas, to ice baths, to pools - there's something for everyone. After a tough gym session (we love working out together) it was pretty lovely to just relax completely in One Spa. 

one square afternoon teaWe got ourselves dried off and headed across the road to One Square (also in the Sheraton) for afternoon tea. I feel like you can't go to Edinburgh and not have afternoon tea. 

We had cocktails made up right infront of us to celebrate the new gin afternoon tea - very refreshing as we watched the rain patter outside! 

The savoury part was my favourite, I just wish we had more! I'm more of a savoury lover than a sweet lover but the waitress kindly brought us over a few extra sandwiches! 

afternoon tea at one square edinburgh

afternoon tea at one square edinburgh

The scones came out fresh and hot, cooked to perfection and as if that wasn't enough, we were then spoilt with some extra desserts to finish us off. As with everywhere we came across in Edinburgh, the service was amazing. Who doesn't want to finish off a weekend of shopping and sight-seeing with an afternoon in a spa followed by delicious afternoon tea? I highly recommend One Spa and One Square to finish off a busy weekend in Edinburgh!

You can watch my vlog of the trip below and see more! Please click here and subscribe to my channel, it would mean the world to me! 

All in all, I need to go back, pronto. There are so many things the rain unfortunately stopped us from doing and also, due to time restraints, we didn't get to see as much as we would have liked. Next time, I'll head back and add an extra day on so we can try more places and see more things. Would I recommend Edinburgh? 100%. The train journey was an absolute pleasure, the people were lovely, the streets are amazing and the bars are well worth trying out. Edinburgh, I'll be back!

Have you ever visited Edinburgh? Do you have any recommendations? Where next should I visit in the UK?

Lots of love, Em x

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