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Reviews (251)
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All reviewsother guestsbeautiful gardenindian restaurantgreat hostsscottish historyguest houseself catering apartmentan excellent basebreakfast tablekippersgreat place to startscottish couplefish choicesoffered fantasticgreat breakfast in the morningexcellent bus servicetwo nights
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Reviewed 28 August 2015

Big room to accomodate a family of 5 and provide a cost effective base to explore Edinburgh in the middle of the festivals.
Good, individually cooked breakfast sitting at table with other guests from around the world.
Recommended a local italian restaurant nearby that was good value as well, however the area itself is not that great.

  • Stayed: August 2015, travelled with family
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Thank Poutine_saucebrune
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 July 2015

A lovely old Georgian home in Dalkeith, about 15-20 minutes, by an easy and really scenic local bus trip, to down town Edinburgh. I had a hire car and didnt want to drive, or have to find expensive parking in Edinburgh and there`s lots of off street parking at Rathan House. The bus stop is outside the front gate or I could walk the 200 metres to Dalkeith High street, Banks,shops Pubs & restaurants etc and lots of Scotland , including Roslyn Chapel, a short drive.. Ewan and Irene MacRae were great hosts and introduced me to the kipper breakfast, along with their other breakfast choices. I would stay there again.

  • Stayed: May 2015, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
1  Thank Gary B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 July 2015 via mobile

I try and support independent hotels throughout the UK because I find generally you get a far more rewarding experience.

Unfortunately not here, the rooms are dated, but impeccably clean. All the mod cons you would expect, wifi, flat screen TV, kettle, stocked shower etc.

I just had a couple of grievances which are probably not fair but I will mention them (I have just my rating to 4* from 3*) although i didn't pre book a breakfast I could have had one before I needed to leave for my meeting @ 0800 which was I thought disappointing. My second annoyance was the fact that. I said I would be down at 0800 to pay for my room and no one appeared until 0815 to take my pavement. I did knock on the door but a dog started to bark and I didn't want to wake the other residents up so I didn't knock more than twice.

Apart from that the owner gave me a recommendation for a restaurant up the road which was fine and was generally very friendly.

Stayed: July 2015, travelled on business
Thank Letsallhaveadisco
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ewan M, Owner at Rathan House - the Guesthouse at Eskbank, responded to this reviewResponded 11 July 2015

Well, like any establishment we have strengths and weaknesses. At the margin your expectations do not seem to have been met entirely.

Let us imagine you returned with your pooch and 2 teenage grandchildren . Rathan would probably tick all your boxes:

1. The kids would be 100% safe in a third acre high walled secure garden and they would be strange if they were not playing croquet , passing a rugby ball or throwing tennis balls fro our
childfriendly retreivers.

2. The kids and you and your pooch would hopefully enter into the spirit of a 3 courses 1920's old fashioned country house hebridean breakfast. ( Low fat/ rolls & bread straight out of the oven....fresh fruit salad usually with high strawberry content...you and they would more than likely be talking to Spaniards. French, Austrians at breakfast and the kids could practice their language skills. There is bespoke cooking for the 3rd course. Breakfast - 3 courses - inevitably will take 30-40 mins. If you are not in a hurry ( you would be in leisure time) it is usually great fun.
On the other hand if, like you, you are on business and in a hurry note that you booked bed only.

3. Victoriana normally suits an 1850's property. Even in the newbuild ( steel and concrete)
the guest is supposed to get the feel of the 1800's. ...victorian plaster cornices etc. ( although modern plumbing, memory foam mattresses, lighting and modern insulation is in the new build)
Some of our furniture is Regency. The guestlounge has dutch marquetry over 300 yrs old.
If you dont like queen anne chest of drawers in the older parts of the house....maybe a victoriana styled B&B isnt for you. You can not please everyone and style is a question of taste.
...neither good nor bad......but just different. In our case we have gone out of our way to tick boxes but stay victorian. The portraiture is predominantly 19th century.

4. As a holidaymaker, you might, like me, not want a hotel like atmosphere in a foreign trip.
You might want something which is not ersatz. You have separation from our apartments and so privacy. However when you come to breakfast...it is an authentic hebridean breakies ....and the way we do it is our own style. Some think it fantastic......but if you want a buffet and scoot....we dont do that. We even give guests a card telling them that if a hebridean style is not for them, then English Breakies style is available 150 yards away at Morrisons......and we are never concerned if people take that option ( it is however rare) . When I am in Holland I want "Bitterballen" ......an authentic hebridean islander breakies is certainly different and absolutely normal ( In the Highlands) when I was a boy.

I suppose the real answer is that you were not relaxing and on holiday but on business. From Oct - March we offer breakfast at 7.30 and are more inclined to offer unhealthy options. I suspect you chose us because we have plenty parking and were cheap. Nevertheless we try not to be a hotel....we are an unlicensed family and pet friendly tourist oriented victorian B&B guesthouse. A great base for Edinburgh park and ride and touring the Borders and the Lothians.

At 8am I am normally at the bakers door waiting for fresh bread and rolls out of the oven.
Irene is normally in the kitchen making fresh fruit salad. Maybe one of the answers for the small % of those who need a quick exit is to take payment at arrival. Doing that does not feel friendly
so we have not done that before....but it would speed exit and we have put that on the list to think about.

Bottom line is that a businessman is probably better to target a hotel in the tourist season.
The big chain is £139 tonight for a room which is more than twice what we charged so there is a price issue. However......since our focus in summer is on couples and families and we have a pet and family friendly establishmanent, we know that we have limitations as a 2 person small guesthouse. Sorry but it makes sense to focus on the biggest proportion of guest demand.
Ewan MacRae

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 July 2015

Booked 2 rooms at this place through Booking.com specificly because had 2 disabled people in my group and found through the internet that they had rooms with disabled facilities. As a special request asking if wheelchair users would be able to use the bathroom.got a reply that the room that was booked wasnt but they had a family room that would cost more but i could pay the diffrence in cash when we checked in.
i rang them a week in advance and was told all was done.Was shocked and confused when on arrival was told that there wasn't suitable room for disable people.
Was told how Booking.com charge 15% comission etc.Also was offered a alternate (who we couldnt speak to directly) but on traveling another 40 min to this alternate place wasnt suitable either!

  • Stayed: July 2015, travelled with family
    • Service
3  Thank joshivdipak
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ewan M, Owner at Rathan House - the Guesthouse at Eskbank, responded to this reviewResponded 9 July 2015

If you book the wrong room through Booking.com and then completely ignore the specific advice to cancel the unsuitable room and book the room suitable for "ambulent disabled" , then it is hardly surprising that someone else books the room with an ambulent disabled wetroom .

The rooms remained empty that evening. It is not true that I said I would adjust the booking for a cash payment. The B.Com sysytem denies me the ability to do that. Only the booker can cancel a room booked . He failed to do so despite advice.

The prospective guest did indeed book 2 rooms through Booking.com. He then sent a note indicating need for disabled room , but as he had booked a double and an upstairs family room I sent a note through Booking.com to indicate that the room booked would probably NOT be suitable.

He then called and I advised him to cancel the room booked and book the large family room with disabled facility. The ONLY person who can cancel a room through Booking.com is the prospective guest. He did not cancel and rebook. Then the disabled facility room was booked by another. Wherever possible I avoid cash and anyone who has stayed here ever will have noted I always use of credit or bank card for payment. ( it makes the business book keeping easier)

One consequence is that the guest turned up , found , as I had advised that upstairs was not suitable and both Booking.com lost out on commission and I lost the ability to fill the rooms booked. Booking.com terms are quite clear. If you cancel within 24hrs of a stay you are liable to pay for the rooms . What dishonest person would fix things to lose money?

In 40 years of professional and business life, nobody has questioned my honesty and integrity, so this is a first. If the prospective guest had been dealing direct with me , then this would not have happened. He was not - he booked through Booking.com then tried to deal direct with me.
Not surprisingly it does not work like that. To get what I advised him he needed he needed to cancel the unsuitable room through Booking.com and book the ( more expensive) room I suggested. By not doing as I advised the room then became unavailable after being booked by another person. If the smaller cheaper family room had been cancelled , and the more expensive suitable room booked ( as advised ) then the prospective guest would have got the right outcome. Nothing dishonest took place. It is not possble for a proprietor to bypass the B.Com system ...only the booker can do that. He didn't.

Strictly speaking by not paying for rooms booked the prospective guest was in breech of contract within B.Com terms. I did not charge, but so far B.Com will need to be paid commission for the other room which the guest did not take up. B.Com has waived its right to commission on the upstars family room ( which is not advertised as disabled suitable)

When someone books a room, it is not possible for us to know the nature of a disablement. All are different. Our large family room has an ambulent disabled wet room.

I acted professionally. At arrival and finding that 2 of the guests were wheelchairbound I advised the group to go to another guesthouse with ambulent disabled facility. No charge was made.

If you have read this far....the guest did not cross the threshold so could not assess quality/food/facilities note that the Tripadvisor score is in appropriate. I do understand that the prospective guests did not get what they wanted ( a disabled room suitable for those in wheelchairs ) . To get what they wanted ...all they had to do was get the Booking.com room booking correct and comply with Booking.com's terms. ( ie cancel and book the right room.....a proprietor can not do what only the booker can do) .

You will note.......no apology for leaving this proprietor with 2 reserved , but needlessly empty unpaid for rooms. He had plenty time to cancel and book the right room as advised. The poster here is the author of the needless problem which arose and inconvenienced him ( and me) .

To be frank, questioning my integrity is annoying, defamatory and unjustified.

Irene MacRae

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 June 2015

We loved this place. We felt welcomed and at home. The garden is super, we had access directly into it from our patio door. Ewan, the owner is a fascinating man and his knowledge of the area made our stay all the better. The door codes were a little tricky, but luckily we were never stuck outside. Be sure to book directly with Ewan via telephone as the booking system was not clear when it came to paying the bill. Recommended highly, buses to the city are frequent and super cheap. Lovely to stay outside of the city and see more of Scotland. Close to Roslyn chapel.

Room Tip: Family room
  • Stayed: April 2015, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Wishongirl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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