London & Edinburgh: The Royal Cities of King Charles III

Rocco Forte Hotels

For the first time in 70 years, the UK has a new king. As King Charles III, officially crowned in May 2023, embarks on his new role, discover the King’s passion projects, his principles and favourite places in London and Edinburgh.

Clarence House to Buckingham Palace

We begin at Clarence House, home to King Charles III and Camilla the Queen Consort for close to 20 years. While Clarence House is closed to the public (for now), you can explore the vast splendour of Buckingham Palace – the lavish home of ruling royals including his mother, the former Queen.

The seasonal opening of Buckingham Palace is a highlight of summer in London but if you’re looking for a private experience, ask our Concierge at Brown’s Hotel and they’ll be happy to organise a more exclusive tour in winter or spring. See if you can spot artworks by Rubens, Van Dyck and Canaletto as you explore the ornate rooms of the opulent red carpeted palace. Usually off-limits, the palace gardens are rarely on public view but, with a little help from our Concierge, the gates can be opened just for you.

Buckingham Palace to Westminster Abbey

From Buckingham Palace it’s a pleasant stroll down the broad boulevard of The Mall to Parliament Square. Take in the tranquillity of Green Park, Horse Guards Parade and the Imperial War Rooms as you go. Arriving at Westminster Abbey, you’ve found the place where every monarch since William the Conqueror has been crowned – King Charles III included.

Crowning jewels at The Tower of London

For Charles’ crowning moment, the St Edward’s Crown rested on his head. You’ll find this priceless symbol of power at the centrepiece of the Crown Jewels, securely housed in the Tower of London. Founded in 1066, this fortress has served as a palace, prison and treasury, and now welcomes visitors who are neither royalty nor treasonous.

Organic and sustainable at Highgrove House

King Charles’ long-held and unwavering opinions on sustainability and organic produce, architecture and young entrepreneurs have led to admirable initiatives such as Duchy Organics and his charitable work with the Princes’ Trust, helping young people to find work. 

On a tour of his gardens at Highgrove House, two hours and 15 minutes by car from Brown’s Hotel, you can see his green credentials grow. Witness the rhododendrons in flower in May and delphiniums in June in a blooming spectacle for all seasons.

A Scottish hotel with a royal connection

Sovereign of England and Scotland, Charles has strong ties with the highlands and so does The Balmoral, our hotel in Edinburgh which goes by the same name as the King’s countryside estate in Aberdeenshire.

Under Charles’ reign, the sprawling Balmoral estate is open to the public from spring until summer. It’s a wonderful opportunity to explore the grand royal residence originally bought by Prince Albert for Queen Victoria in 1852.

Back in the urban hub of Edinburgh, seek out the Mercat Cross, the place where huge crowds gathered to see Charles III proclaimed King. One observer spoke for the nation when she told The Scotsman, “I’ve only ever known one monarch”. What better way to get acquainted with our new monarch as he embarks on a new chapter?

 

Our Concierges at Brown’s Hotel and The Balmoral can provide you with exclusive access to the places, gardens and palaces that are close to the King’s heart.


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