Blythswood Square may feature 8 foot pendant chandeliers, red velvet studded booths and be the highest spender of Harris tweed in soft furnishing since the original QE2.
It may have hosted A list stars such as Liam Gallagher and P Diddy (or whatever he was calling himself at the time).
But make no mistake, Blythswood Square is not a “stuffy five star hotel.”
“Our concept was to make it an accessible venue,” says Fiona Strauss, Director of Sales and Marketing at the Townhouse Collection Group. “It didn’t have to be a “celebration” restaurant or a “special occasion” restaurant. I feel we have achieved that.”
“Although we are five stars, we didn’t want it to be a stuffy five star hotel. When we set out we wanted to be accessible for all.”
“You can come in to the restaurant and dine on the market menu or take advantage of our 5pm offers. Equally, you can spend £50 on a steak, but you don’t have to.”
“We serve breakfast, lunch, tapas, we have light bites, we have afternoon tea. It gives people lots of excuses to come in.”
The restaurant menu in Blythswood Square may be reasonably priced but no there is no scrimping on quality when sourcing ingredients.
Local, seasonal produce is a focal point for the kitchen, which aims to grow all their own fresh produce from scratch.
“We pride ourselves on using local produce,” Fiona said. ” We have just secured a plot of land, just on the outskirts of the city, where we will eventually grow our own fruit and vegetables which will come back through the menus.”
“The a la carte menu changes every three months but the market menu can change daily, weekly, just really depending whats in season and what the chef wants to create.”
Blythswood Square’s decor also borrows heavily from Scottish influences, with Harris tweed appearing on lampshades, chairs and curtains.
The hotel has created a modern Scottish aesthetic rather than the romanticised tartan and dark panelling seen at many other hotels.
The decor is also peppered with a nod to Blythswood Square’s previous incarnation as the Royal Scottish Automobile Club, with menus and the inside of the lampshades decorated with old programs from the Monte Carlo rally which started from outside the hotel.
“We wanted the decor to be contemporary but comfortable, luxurious and accessible at the same time,” Fiona said.
“The building was the Royal Scottish automobile club for about 100 years. The club disbanded and it lay empty for four years until we bought it, then it took two to three years to refurbish the building”.
“We kept all the gold plating above the door and all the individual touches. The salon bar upstairs runs the whole length of the building with beautiful pillars and the gold tops round the pillars. It was a labour of love.”
The mix of contemporary and classic is also echoed in the hotel’s cocktail menu which features old favourites like cosmopolitans and mojitos as well entirely new creations.
“The mixologists we have are really passionate about drink making as a career,” Fiona said. “They research each cocktail and put their own twist on them based on seasonal ingredients. They also press and create their own juices and hand carve their own ice. It’s a real art and they are really proud of what they do.”
“If you tell them what drinks you like, gin, vodka and whatever, they will make something just for you.”
If a customised cocktail isn’t enough to tempt you to visit Blythswood Square, just wait til you hear about their spa.
“Its all done in slate and marble and it’s very tactile,” Fiona said. “There are nine treatments rooms, a spa café, and a thermal suite with two separate pools, two separate saunas, heated beds and two separate steam rooms. We have a champagne nail bar down there too.”
“We also have a rasul mud chamber and a seaweed bath. The seaweed comes down from Stornaway and the Hebrides.”
Once again using Scottish products to create a modern, luxurious experience.
£50 2 person steak + wine offer OR 30% a la carte discount OR £22 for 3 courses on market menu + fizz OR 2 for 1 Market Menu offer at Restaurant at Blythswood Square on 5pm Dining.
Blythswood Square Spa offers from £26.50 on 5pm Spa & Beauty.