Edinburgh hotel hound is top dog at the Balmoral Hotel

At only nine years old he has managed to steal the show as the true front man of the Capital's poshest hotel.

Wednesday, 5th September 2018, 10:04 am
Updated Thursday, 6th September 2018, 5:48 am

Meet Stanley, a golden retriever and resident deputy dog at The Balmoral.

His affectionate character has made him the hotel’s most-loved star as he helps his owner Richard Cooke, general manager at the Princes Street institution, with the daily running of the Capital’s most famous hotel.

The multi-cultured pooch was born in Malaysia to Thai parents and made his way to Edinburgh through Canada, via Texas.

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The Balmoral - Stanley the dog - checking in

Richard said: “Stan always flies business class, which costs me a fortune, he is very much part of my family.

“I’ve turned down jobs in various locations based on Stan’s happiness.”

And with a sweet nature Richard said Stanley fits into the ebb and flow of life at the £300-a-night hotel with ease and loves to welcome guests and bring some tail-wagging warmth to their stay.

“He has two people who take care of him in the office,” Richard explained. “He hangs out with me and we have a housekeeper who loves taking him for walks and one of Stanley’s favourite places is at the front door with the doorman where he is looked after by members of the general public who pat his head.

“Stanley comes in and says hello to reception, here, Rob, our Director of Rooms always has Michel Roux dog treats on hand for him.

“He then goes to see the restaurant staff and waves from the door as he’s not allowed in our bars, restaurants or kitchen, or anywhere food is prepared.

“Then he heads up to his office, has some water and does his e-mails. More often than not he’ll attend the hotel operations meeting and mid-morning he likes to go for a stroll outside, he likes to go up Calton Hill once a day.

“He especially enjoys sleeping through meetings. He goes for little trots throughout the day seeing guests.”

Hotel guests also love the canine concierge and occasionally borrow Stan to take him for walks.

Richard added: “Stanley is a very loving dog, I think he has only barked perhaps ten times in his life. He just likes hanging out with people.

“Recently a guest liked him so much they sent him a package filled with some dog treats from their country.

“Although he seems to not enjoy going into people’s bedrooms, I guess he’s old fashioned.”

The hotel is no stranger to A-list guests and counts itself fortunate to also play host to some top dogs.

After launching a pet policy last year, the UK’s most famous corgi on social media – with a following of over 120,000 – Marcel Le Corgi, paw-sed at The Balmoral for a short stay to check out their dog friendly facilities.

Included in a £50 canine welcome package, Marcel enjoyed a stylish dog bed, bowl and some locally-made treats from Harry’s Bakery as well as a hamper with Pawsecco and a specially made bandana in the hotel’s tartan.