North British Hotel, Princes Street, Edinburgh

Ink and colour wash on paper, c.1895
RCAHMS: Dunn and Findlay Collection salvaged in 1981

In 1895 the North British Railway announced an architectural competition to design a station hotel. The competition attracted many of the leading architects of the day including Edinburgh based Dunn and Findlay, who produced these detailed design drawings.

The competition was won by W Hamilton Beattie, who had started his career in the family firm of George Beattie and Son as a specialist in hotel design. The North British Station Hotel opened on 15 October 1902 and was described as ‘one of the largest and best appointed [hotels] in the Kingdom’. It was renamed the Balmoral Hotel in 1990.

The clock on the tower has become a familiar Edinburgh landmark; set five minutes fast it ensures that passengers do not miss their trains.