Fairytale Edinburgh castle named one of world’s best wedding venues gets multi-million pound makeover
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A fairtytale castle on the outskirts of Edinburgh has received a £3.4 million investment, allowing for an expansion of its facilities and services.
Renowned for hosting exclusive weddings and events, Carlowrie Castle, which was built in 1852 in the Scottish Baronial style, boasts 21 spacious bedrooms, with every room offering breathtaking views of the countryside.
The exclusive-use venue has been awarded a string of accolades in recent years including being crowned one of the top three venues in Europe at the International Hotel Awards – and one of the eight best wedding venues around the world by Grazia Magazine, the only UK venue represented.
Work funded by the investment, which will see the venue welcome more guests and offer a greater choice of state-of-the-art accommodation, is already underway and will complete in 2023.
A formerly derelict stables block located inside a walled garden in the castle grounds has been restored to house seven ensuite bedrooms, while five modern cabins and a sauna will be erected in the new year, offering accommodation for a further 10 people.
When the works are complete, the unique castle and its 32-acre grounds, which have a rich heritage including being the only home of Scotland’s greatest female explorer, Isobel Wylie Hutchison, will be able to accommodate 50 guests.
The expansion of Carlowrie Castle comes as the business reported its most successful year to date, having hosted 265 weddings and events in 2022.
In addition to facilitating the expansion of the castle itself, the investment from The Cumberland has enabled founder and CEO, Andrew Marshall, to broaden Carlowrie Group’s portfolio through the launch of Edinburgh Street Food.
The city’s first seven-day-a-week street market, which will open its doors for the first time on 25 February in the heart of Edinburgh, will feature a 10,000 sq ft indoor and large outdoor space, and will be home to 10 award-winning street vendors, three bars, and 150 live events each year, creating a boost for the local economy.
Coinciding with Carlowrie Group’s commitment to giving back to the local community, Edinburgh Street Food plans to use some of its profits to create a mental health initiative in the city.
Recognising its role in contributing to a sustainable economy and with a rich history of supporting its local community, Carlowrie Castle has implemented several conscious working practices across the venue, including locally sourced food supplies, sustainable biomass heating, extensive tree planting in the estate and increased ties with the local parish of Kirkliston.
The business is also a major benefactor of London-based charity RESTART, which owner Andrew Marshall founded in 2009 to support homeless people to overcome the challenges of life on the streets.
In 2021, The Breakfast Bothy, a vibrant police box that provides a hot breakfast and a friendly face for those in need, was launched in central Edinburgh.
Speaking about the collaboration with The Cumberland, Marshall, said: “We’re delighted to have worked with The Cumberland to create new accommodation options for our guests at Carlowrie Castle in order to meet growing demand.
“It was crucial for me to find the right lending partner and when I came across The Cumberland I was pleased that our founding values were aligned. They ticked all the right boxes and the team didn’t disappoint when it came to working together to make our goals a reality.
“I look forward to further opportunities to collaborate as we continue to grow and evolve the Carlowrie Group in the years to come.”