More than just kilts, tartan and shortbread, the allure of Scotland as a style springboard and one of the hottest cultural destinations has never been more apparent.
While the Highlands currently headline travel magazines the world-over and vacationers pack the Royal Mile, Chanel’s Paris/Edinburgh Pre-Fall Collection has simultaneously hit boutiques with incredible fanfare.
In the next few posts we will highlight this collection that pays tribute to the creativity and craftsmanship of the ten highly specialized Scottish houses acquired by Chanel that produce everything from exquisite embroidery to amazing feather detail (the center-point of this season’s accessories). According to Vogue.fr, this collection also pays tribute to Coco Chanel’s lover the Duke of Westminster through whom she developed her admiration for Scottish craftsmanship and her love of tweed, cardigans and knitwear.
Today we begin with our favorite accessories from the collection and end with a look at the enchantment of Edinburgh and what not to miss when you are there!
Bracelets and cuffs come in super-luxe fabrics or exquisite feathers.
Tucked neatly into a tight neck-grazing chignon, the hair-piece is perfection!
We were advised that the feather-detail ring was not purchased for American boutiques. So should you be interested in it, like we were, there’s your excuse for a quick European getaway!
If Europe is out of the question, these are available here and now…..
Match the collection’s belt with a white lace or white ruffled blouse or a deep oxblood velvet skirt….
If this has whetted your appetite for more royal fanfare and grandeur, castle hopping in Scotland may be on your horizon and Edinburgh serves as the ideal starting point.
Arriving into Edinburgh by train is especially enjoyable if you are traveling with children (there are daily connections from London that take approx. 4 hours) and a stay in the historic Balmoral hotel keeps many of the cities treasures within walking distance.
The Balmoral was a traditional railway hotel built for the North British Railway Company and stands today as a city landmark. It is located literally in the heart of the city and run by the luxurious Rocco Forte Hotel’s. It’s majestic clock tower is historically known for being set 2 minutes fast to allow travelers a cushion so as not to miss their train at the station nearby.
Beyond its historic and geographic significance, the Balmoral also claims fame as being the hotel wherein JK Rowling finished penning the last lines of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows on January 11, 2007.
From the Balmoral stroll through the relaxing and charming Princes Street Gardens to reach the Old Town and the Royal Mile.
The Victorian Gothic Scott Monument, a tribute to author Sir Walter Scott, greets you immediately as you head towards the gardens.
As you walk towards Old Town you pass many of Edinburgh’s galleries and historic buildings.
St Giles’ Cathedral, the historic City Church of Edinburgh at the center of Old Town, is about a 45 minute leisurely stroll from the Balmoral.
Edinburgh Castle sits atop of the Royal Mile, which ends at the Palace of Holyroodhouse. Both are worth visiting. If you are visiting both in one day, split them up with lunch at the famed Royal Botanical Gardens, or a picnic on the green of the Princes Street Gardens. Both allow for commanding views, and if you are with children they will appreciate the grassy area to run and play.
If you are visiting in summer, a trip to the Royal Botanical Gardens is a great way to break-up the day.
Another way to break-up the day for younger travelers comes by way of the National Museum of Scotland, especially enjoyable for your young animal lovers.
Cap off your day in what Andrew Lloyd Webber calls, “The prettiest restaurant ever!” If you end your day at Edinburgh Castle, the Witchery is just steps away and is ranked amongst UK’s top 5 restaurants. For this romantic hot spot, they ask that children under 12 leave the dining room by 7:30. Remember to book well in advance!