Cafe Royal

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19 West Register Street, Edinburgh, United Kingdom
0131 556 1884
Cafe Royal - CAFE ROYAL bar
Cafe Royal - CAFE ROYAL restaurant
Cafe Royal - CAFE ROYAL
Cafe Royal - CAFE ROYAL restaurant
Cafe Royal - CAFE ROYAL bar
Cafe Royal - CAFE ROYAL
Cafe Royal - CAFE ROYAL

Cafe Royal Edinburgh Reviews

AdamR3723 AdamR3723
173 reviews
A visual feast Sep 26, 2017
The Café Royal is in West Register Street, close to the Royal Bank of Scotland housed in Dundas's former mansion on St Andrew Square.

Its elegant, but somewhat staid exterior, belies its interior. Stepping into this café is almost as visually awing as entering the bank mentioned above. Opened in 1863, the building was designed by Robert Paterson.

The café’s interior is a riot of colourful Victorian décor. A golden pillar resembling a palm tree sprouts from behind the centrally located wooden bar to support the complexly stuccoed ceiling. Lamps shaped like flaming torches illuminate the bar. The back wall of the bar is lined with a series of images made from Doulton ceramic tiles painted by John Eyre. Each one illustrates a famous personality: Stevenson, Daguerre, Franklin, Caxton, Faraday, and Peel. These were purchased by a licensee from the 1886 International Exhibition of Industry, Science and Art, which was held in Edinburgh.

The route from the bar to the toilets passes a door with frosted glass in which the words “OYSTER TANK ROOM” are etched. In the past, this room contained tanks with live oysters waiting to be served to the café’s customers. Today, it is a store room.

The restaurant is separated from the bar by a wooden panel with mirrors attached to it. The stained-glass windows of the restaurant depict men taking part in a variety of sporting activities. The mock-Tudor ribbed ceiling is spectacular. We drank unspectacular coffee in the bar. At a neighbouring table an America couple were tackling a mixed seafood platter which looked as if it had been lifted straight out of a food painting by a 17th century Dutch master such as Pieter Claesz. Whether it is just to look or to refresh yourself, this café is well-worth visiting.
CAFE ROYAL
CAFE ROYAL
CAFE ROYAL bar
CAFE ROYAL bar
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