Since this review was written, Blythswood Square has changed ownership, with the result that what is said here may no longer be current. We hope to be able to update the review in the near future. Blythswood Square is one of the Town House Collection of luxury hotels in Edinburgh and Glasgow. The hotel is located on the east side of, as the name implies, Blythswood Square. This was laid out on a hill immediately to the west of the city in the early 1820s and gives the impression of a small piece of Edinburgh's New Town transported in an entirely unexpected way to Glasgow. The result is one of the few green spaces in central Glasgow, only a few minutes walk from the main railway stations: and an ideal location for a hotel. You can read our dining review for Blythswood Square here.
At the beginning of the 1900s the houses on this side of the square were brought up as they came onto the market by the Royal Scottish Automobile Club, and in the 1920s they remodelled the whole row to become the club headquarters. As a result Blythswood Square was chosen as one of the official starting points of the Monte Carlo Rally in the years between 1949 and 1973. The RSAC moved out in 2002, and from 2006 work began to convert their headquarters into the splendid hotel you see today. The frontages along Blythswood Square and the flanking roads were retained, along with the main public rooms, while a new spa was constructed beneath the building and accommodation to the rear.
The heritage of the hotel is amply demonstrated as you walk through the front doors into the magnificent hotel lobby, resplendent in light coloured marble and columns. The second major public room on this floor lies to the north of the lobby. The cocktail bar and restaurant occupies what was once the RSAC's ballroom and wraps around the corner of the hotel. It is large enough to accommodate 120 covers, but is nicely and discreetly subdivided in a way that ensures you are not overwhelmed by the space. On the first floor of the hotel is the 35 meter Salon, an attractive and comfortable space offering views out over Blythswood Square. This serves as a venue for afternoon tea, and in the evening becomes the residents' bar.
There are 100 luxury en suite bedrooms at the hotel. Two thirds are Classic Rooms, which come with king size beds and Spanish marble bathrooms. There are also a small number of more compact "Wee Classics", while moving the other way in size, the Deluxe Rooms offer 40 square metres of space and in some cases can be used as family rooms. Blythswood Square also offers six individually appointed suites, some with their own balconies, as well as an extremely luxurious Penthouse. All the rooms have a consistent look and feel, and come equipped with the everything you would expect to find in a five star hotel room. At the time of our visit most had access to free wi-fi, which it is planned to extend to all. All rooms are air conditioned, though with controls slightly too complex for this reviewer to find wholly intuitive.
A number of other facilities are on offer at Blythswood Square. The Spa, occupying 10,000 square feet over the lower floors of the hotel, includes nine luxury treatment rooms, a thermal suite with a range of experiences, two relaxation pools, and relaxing lounge and café area. When we visited a new addition was a sunshine room, ideal for those tired of grey winter skies. Elsewhere in the hotel a number of rooms are available for functions and events of different sizes, including the Monte Carlo Suite, the wood panelled Rally Bar, and the Clubroom. Meanwhile the Screening Room seats up to 40 guests for private film screenings, product launches and corporate presentations.
Disabled access at Blythswood Square is excellent. Wheelchair access is available from the entrance on West George Street, with lift access from there directly into the lobby. There is also wheelchair access to the restaurant via a lift platform. Several of the hotel's guest room are wheelchair accessible and some of these also have wet-room facilities.
Blythswood Square is a fascinating addition to Glasgow's hotel landscape. The heritage of the building contributes considerably to the public areas and the setting, highly central yet removed from main through routes, is ideal for anyone visiting Glasgow or doing business in the city. Meanwhile, staff are friendly and helpful. You can read our dining review for Blythswood Square here.