External Restoration and Refurbishment
The building is listed as being of special Architectural and Historic Interest and is owned by the Royal Over-Seas League and operates as a hotel with restaurant and licensed premises that are run by Cobbs.
I would like to thank you for the very professional and highly effective manner in which you have managed this important project.
Royal Over-Seas League
A director of Cobbs wrote a poem as a tribute to the successful restoration of the hotel and is entitled – The Finest Lady In Princes Street – written from the eyes of the building herself. This poem is written as follows:-
I’ve been here since 1879, and seen some changes throughout that time
My postal address is really swell,100 Princes St. for all to tell
Did you know I was once a hotel?
The Windsor by name a splendid construction, designed by Robert Patterson
With architectural influence from France
He left nothing in my design to chance
My steeply pitched mansard roof, sometimes I felt a bit aloof
Looking over to Edinburgh Castle and looking down on The N’or Loch
I really felt a bit of a toff!!!!!
My lovely cream sandstone scrolled stone was not isolated or left alone
Accompanied with Corinthian columns and broad outer bays
I was the finest on Princes Street in many ways.
My doors welcomed many a soul, some I didn’t give a second look
One lady who entertained a lot, was Lady Clerk of Penicuik
She wined and dined day and night, rumour had it she was a Jacobite
Afternoon tea she had a lot, particularly with Sir Walter Scott
Unfortunately the ravages of time, and neglect took their toll
The sandstone crumbling from the scroll
The wrought iron railings, rusted and loose
I was starting to look dowdy and done
No longer shining in the mid-day sun
Then my owners decided to return me to my former glory
Believe you me that is some story
Major General Porter gathered a team with the help, of Cobbs to review the scene
A plan was drawn up and works begun, with our project director Ian Henderson
He commissioned a company only the best that went by the name of Restorex
A lot of sweat a lot of tears went in to this project to alay our fears
A lot of research into fine detail and watched over at every occasion
To address my restoration
Now I am finished for the next generation of ROSL members to enjoy and behold
and listen to my story being told
To join us here to wine and dine,
To join us here to read and sleep
To join us here to meet and greet
The Finest Lady in Princes Street.
By Willie Cameron, Director, Cobbs, July 2013