Swellegant Stays: Fingal Leith, Scotland

0
439

Fingal is an exquisite 22 cabin boutique hotel. This intriguing vessel greets guests with a red carpet experience from the moment they round the bow that juts out of the water onto the streets of Edinburgh from its permanent berth at the historic Port of Leith.

This boat was used for 37 years to secure, alter, maintain, and outfit lighthouses around the entire coastline of Scotland. There is something fairytale-esque about this boat turned luxury floating hotel. We recognized that from the moment we stepped aboard. Through the heavy wooden door adorned with brass kickplate, we submerged ourselves into the nautical world that is this stately yet whimsical escape. After spending more than a week in Scotland’s northern Highlands, exploring and visiting one particular lighthouse, we boarded Fingal, not wanting to know too much beforehand because we love the element of surprise and newness when discovering hotels and destinations. The fairydust was sprinkled as soon as we were handed our cabin keys. Of all the lighthouses around Scotland, we were to be staying in the cabin named Neist Point. This is the lighthouse, a few days prior to coming aboard, we hiked to and explored. Finding out that our stateroom is also named Neist Point felt like kismet. Honestly, being in Scotland tends to do that to you. The whole country feels sort of magical.

The cabins on this vessel are outfitted with cabinetry upholstered in soft leather, king beds floating on burled wood bases, tactile senses fully engaged as you find yourself gazing out of the large round windows (we did not want to call them portholes since those seem de rigueur and tiny) onto the streets of Edinburgh’s waterfront. The boat has its own sense of place. As you drift from the stateroom to the beautifully tiled spacious bathroom, do not be surprised if your fingers run their way across the wallpaper to satisfy the need to take in every morsel of the space with all of your senses. Go ahead, take it all in. For us, this was all a part of the experience. As grand and luxe as she is, Fingal feels inviting, as though she is welcoming you home. Like a beacon in the dark.  

The cabins on this vessel are outfitted with cabinetry upholstered in soft leather, king beds floating on burled wood bases, tactile senses fully engaged as you find yourself gazing out of the large round windows (we did not want to call them portholes since those seem de rigueur and tiny) onto the streets of Edinburgh’s waterfront. The boat has its own sense of place. As you drift from the stateroom to the beautifully tiled spacious bathroom, do not be surprised if your fingers run their way across the wallpaper to satisfy the need to take in every morsel of the space with all of your senses. Go ahead, take it all in. For us, this was all a part of the experience. As grand and luxe as she is, Fingal feels inviting, as though she is welcoming you home. Like a beacon in the dark.  

Renewed and refreshed, take a walk through the engine room. The designers have given guests the opportunity to see the former inner workings of Fingal as they stroll down another red carpet; the engines are neatly and quietly tucked behind plexiglass.  We took this route up to cocktails on the aft deck before heading in to dinner at The Lighthouse Restaurant and Bar. Personal favorite on their stellar cocktail menu is the Yard No. 140. It was so good that we went back home with the recipe and made our own pineapple wine, just to recreate this drink.

She was based out of Oban (yes, the one famous for its delicious scotch) to service the numerous lighthouses around the country. Occasionally requested to accompany the royal yacht Britannia during official visits. Decommissioned in 1999 and the new vessel Pole Star was commissioned to replace her. However, lighthouses changed, and they became less manual and more operated remotely versus being inhabited, so the use of these vessels today has diminished, but their glow has not dimmed. You feel the history and nostalgia wash over you while onboard.

A luxury floating hotel that is permanently berthed on the vibrant waterfront in Edinburgh’s Leith. This is a hotel with all the glamor and style of a superyacht with old world elegance and charm. For the ultimate in unique stays, look here.

Cocktail menu for your enjoyment, but nothing beats having one onboard!

www.fingal.co.uk

www.pobhotels.com




US

Subscription Length

Canada

Subscription Length


Digital Version

Subscribe to Swanky Retreats Magazine’s DIGITAL version. Read the latest issue online or download it to your computer.