India Buildings at the top of the city’s Victoria Street will be converted into a 225-room high-end hotel with multiple dining and drinking outlets, expected to open in 2020.
The hotel is also intended to host a wide-range of events, including gigs by local musicians. The announcement was hailed as “a huge coup for Edinburgh” and is forecast to boost the local economy by £5 million. Around 200 full-time jobs are expected to be created at the hotel.
Edinburgh is such an iconic city and we’re thrilled to be able to say it will be the home of the first Virgin Hotel in the UK and across Europe.Sir Richard Branson, Co-Founder, Virgin Group Ltd.
Virgin opened its first hotel in Chicago in 2015, based in a historic downtown office building and several more are under construction in the US.
Sir Richard said: “My grandparents were from Edinburgh, so Scotland has always held a special place in my heart. The people of Edinburgh have been so great in welcoming us to their great city; we can’t wait to open our doors to people across the country and, indeed, the world.”
Virgin Hotels chief executive Raul Leal said Edinburgh had been a natural choice for their first hotel in Europe: “It’s a top travel destination, it’s an amazing place. I spent my tenth anniversary there. It’s an ideal location. It’s very fitting that our first hotel in Europe is a historic landmark building like Chicago. The location is fabulous and we love the fact we had to work round the building...”