I booked a two night stay for the end of the half term holidays, mainly just to use the pool and relax. We booked direct with Marriott and got a deal that included meals for the children if we ate in the restaurant too. We always try to book Marriott when travelling with the children so that they can share a proper double bed rather than a sofa bed or camp bed.
Check -in was quick and easy and the receptionist was very friendly and gave us all the information we needed. As previous reviewers have said the route to the bedrooms is somewhat lengthy and sometimes confusing, but not enough to be a problem. We had room 258 which we found to be quiet (apart from being able to hear someone snoring in a neighbouring room) which overlooked trees and fields.
We headed to the pool and were very impressed with the changing areas, the only problem was quite a dirty floor as you headed out to the pool (maybe because of parents not removing or covering their shoes who were bringing their children to swimming lessons). Also the door leading out to the pool is quite hard to open when the floor is wet as its quite heavy/stiff. The air temperature and water temperature was lovely, felt like you were getting into a bath, and it was nice that the jacuzzi was part of the pool so that children could go in too. The showers were also immaculate.
We decided to eat in the Zest bar that evening. We arrived about 5.30pm and were told that they were still serving the lunchtime menu until 6pm, so we decided to go into the James Braid bar for a drink. I felt the bar lacked atmosphere and it was absolutely freezing because of the air con. Drinks are typical hotel prices £5.70 for a small glass of Rosé, £3.75 for a pint.
The Zest menu had plenty of choice and I thought the children's menu of £7.50 for 3 courses was good value. My fish and chips were very very nice and my husband enjoyed his Marriott burger. The children really enjoyed their food too. Unfortunately the air con was on in here too and it was uncomfortably cold. We saw some people moving tables to try and get away from draughts, but the staff seemed unable to do anything about the temperature. If it had been warmer we would have ordered more drinks and stayed there for longer.
Breakfast the next morning was served in the formal restaurant. It was quite busy, but not manic, however the layout of the cereal being beside the start of the hot food lead to quite a lot of congestion.
We took the children to the driving range after breakfast which they really enjoyed. We then decided to get the park and ride into Edinburgh. The children loved the double decker as they hardly ever go on a bus. We had a lovely wander and came across a place called 'The Dome' all decked out in Christmas decorations, all I can say is wow, what a fabulous place. If we hadn't had the children with us it would have definitely been the type of place we would have relaxed in with a glass of prosecco.
We used the pool again that evening, but his time the temperatures were a lot cooler, so we didn't stay in as long. Again we ate in Zest, again the food was good, however the room temperature was cold again. It was warmer when we first went in but got progressively colder the longer we were in there.
There was a wedding at the hotel on the Saturday, but we didn't see or hear a thing.
Check out was trouble free and we were given a business card so that we could contact the hotel direct as I said we would definitely be returning.
At breakfast the next morning it looked like someone (not a child) had come down in their pyjamas which was quite bizarre, but each to their own!!
I must say that every member of staff we passed said hello and had a smile.
We will definitely be returning to this hotel.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.