1 October 2023 – 31 March 2024
Please note visits to the house have to be pre-booked and are by guided tour only. Pre-book on the green tab.
We are delighted to offer free entry to our tours for Ukrainian families and their Scottish host families. Please ring ahead on 0131 336 2060 to book.
We have now launched our busy and diverse events programme. Click on the tab above on our Lauriston Castle venue page where it asks what you want to see and say 'events'. We have lectures and talks, family events, creative workshops, costumed performances, murder mysteries, film screenings, horror tours and lots more!
"Thank you so much for another fantastic workshop. Lauriston is an incredible asset to the community and workshops like these are super important for creativity, community and wellbeing. Thank you."
Highlights Tours alternate weekends at 1.30 and 3pm or join us for one of our new monthly special tours, either ‘Lauriston before the Reids’ or ‘Architecture of Lauriston’.
Look out for our Family tour at 11am alternate weekends. Tour spaces are limited, please book your space on the link opposite.
With its calm, tranquil atmosphere, and stunning views across the Firth of Forth, Lauriston is the perfect place to escape from the bustle of the city centre.
Enjoy a woodland walk, a visit to our award-winning Japanese garden, or step back in time and experience what life was like in an Edinburgh middle-class home at the beginning of the 20th century.
Mimi's Little Bakehouse at Lauriston Castle
Open Monday – Friday 9-4 and Saturday – Sunday 10-4.
Mimi’s Little Bakehouse opened in the beautiful grounds of Lauriston Castle in the summer of 2020. Operating mainly as a takeaway service with limited seating, we serve a small all-day brunch menu and a selection of award-winning cakes and hot drinks.
We do not take bookings for this store and we welcome well-behaved dogs.
Our packaging is vegeware and compostable, we work with changeworks who are a zero landfill waste company and we have recently introduced crockery inside to help reduce our waste.
For events enquiries, learning opportunities and volunteering contact firstname.lastname@example.org
For tours contact email@example.com
For hire of gardens for filming and weddings contact firstname.lastname@example.org
The collections at Lauriston Castle were assembled by Lauriston’s last residents, Mr and Mrs W. R. Reid, and Mrs Reid’s brother Mr William Barton. They shared an understanding that the last of them surviving would leave the house, grounds and contents in Trust to the Nation, and so after the death of Mrs Reid in 1926 the Castle became a museum.
Lauriston’s last residents epitomised the Scottish Edwardian wealthy middle class. They were cultured, widely-travelled, and were all born in Edinburgh, into families of established local businesses.
Mr Reid owned one of Scotland’s leading cabinet making business, Morison & Company, interior decorators and furniture manufacturers, with branches in Edinburgh, Glasgow and Manchester. You can see many fine examples of Morison and Co. furniture inside the Castle.
Mrs Reid’s brother, William Barton, ran a large-scale plumbing and ‘sanitary engineering’ business, installing plumbing and electrical work and even inventing a revolutionary steam sterilizing system for hospitals. He worked closely with his brother-in-law’s cabinet making and interior design Company, and they were responsible for the bathrooms, electric lighting and central heating which turned Lauriston Castle into a modern Edwardian Home.
Lauriston’s collections are displayed within an interior designed by William Robert Reid. Some of the objects were brought from their former home at 78 George Street, Edinburgh – the mezzotint engravings, Sheffield plate, Scottish and English furniture, and Chinese and Dutch blue and white ceramics; which were all fashionable collector’s items of the period.
The Reids’ move to Lauriston Castle in 1903 inspired the development of new collections. The Southern Italian and Dutch furniture, Blue John ornaments, Eastern rugs and Crossley wool mosaics were all collected to complement Mr Reids design for Lauriston’s elegant Edwardian interiors.
The furniture collection includes pieces from Scotland, England and Europe. There is an elegant Lady’s writing desk made in Scotland in about 1800, fine examples of beautifully crafted Parisian furniture - such as a French commode made in the 1780s by G W Dester who became a master of the Corporation of Cabinet makers in Paris in 1774..Our most remarkable pieces are Mr Reid’s collection of 18th century Italian Furniture, with examples from Naples, Sicily, Lombardy, Venice and Rome. Perhaps the most spectacular of all is a table top, dating from about 1590, and made in a technique known as ‘pietra dura’ in which marble and semiprecious stones are cut and fitted into a slab of marble to create complex and beautiful patterns. The table stands in the Reception Hall at the castle used the colours from the different stones in this table as the design inspiration for whole room.
As well as the many thousands of items collected by the Castle’s last owners you can also see some of their more personal belongings, There are all manner of details which give insight into the lives of the people who lived at Lauriston in the early 20th century from Mrs Reids piano and music in the Drawing Room, a newspaper in the Sitting room reporting the sinking of the Titanic, a 1920’s telephone in Mr Reids Study, and Mrs Reid walking stick with her name attached on a silver plaque by the castle doorway.
Lauriston Castle Access Guide
Click on the link below to see our comprehensive access guide and find out how you can get to and around Lauriston Castle.
Lauriston Castle BSL Tour
For all accessibility enquiries please contact the venue on:
+44 (0) 131 336 2060
Thank you so much for another fantastic workshop. Lauriston is an incredible asset to the community and workshops like these are super important for creativity, community and wellbeing. Thank you. Tripadvisor review
Lauriston Castle Special EventsSaturday 9 December 2023, 7:30pm