Johnnie Walker Princes Street is a landmark attraction that raises the bar for visitor experiences in the capital.

An Edinburgh landmark transformed, Johnnie Walker Princes Street will lead the way for tourism in the capital as Scotland strides into spring with new possibilities ahead for local culture and hospitality sectors. The venue is the centrepiece of Diageo’s £185 million investment in Scotch whisky tourism, following the opening of new experiences at the Glenkinchie, Clynelish and Cardhu distilleries. 

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Over eight floors, the meticulously-designed attraction offers restaurants and rooftop bars, tours and tasting rooms, alongside whisky archives, a cask cellar and a comprehensive retail space. As a new cultural destination with top class hospitality and versatile events space, Johnnie Walker Princes Street will play a part as Edinburgh looks forward to a busy summer of welcoming visitors.

The Johnnie Walker Journey of Flavour is an immersive 90-minute experience, led by an expert guide, that tours the history of blending and production of the spirit. You will also enjoy three whisky drinks tailored to your flavour preference or non-alcoholic options.

The story – told using performance, animation, music, and special effects – takes you through Scotland’s history and how Johnnie Walker became the world’s best-selling Scotch whisky. You are guided through interactive rooms, learning about the flavours and scents of a dram before ending up in a high-tech bar where a personalised cocktail arrives at the touch of a button.

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Upstairs, the 1820 rooftop bar with its wraparound terrace, private dining space and spectacular views of Edinburgh Castle is one of the most impressive lounges in the city, bringing guests together in the west end of Edinburgh. Tables here and in the Explorers’ Bothy Bar are booked separately from the tour. These rooms and the dedicated Label Studio event space will increasingly be used as venues for events that provide a showcase for Scottish fashion, music and artistic talent.

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You can embark on a curated exploration of Scottish whiskies in the Explorers’ Bothy with single malts from Islay, the Highlands and Speyside before savouring a rare Johnnie Walker Princes Street-exclusive Lowland grain whisky. The idea is to provide a venue that can welcome visitors at any stage in their whisky journey, from the curious to the connoisseur.

Best of Scotland spent the day behind the scenes at the attraction, speaking to some of the people that create the experience in this world-class venue.


“I was working at The Balmoral before I was approached to interview for a role here with the team leading the whisky experience. They did such a great job of bringing so many different people from the hospitality sector into this building. Some have come from distilleries, others from performance art or luxury hotels and we can welcome people with our different skills. I feel like we will be a headquarters for whisky tourism in Scotland and in Edinburgh, there are so many things to see and do across the eight floors. Our retail space is fantastic because we have different variations of whisky, something for the novice or for the collector. It’s also great that we are bringing more footfall to the west end, it’s a fantastic location.

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“We also have a programme called Learning for Life where we nurture local hospitality talent and it’s absolutely amazing to see things start to brighten up on that side of things. I think we have a great opportunity to welcome people here and get them excited again about Edinburgh.”


“I started working in hotels when I was 15 years old and then studied International Business and Hotel Management.

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“I was very fortunate, I spent time working in luxury hotels in Switzerland and in Ireland, then in 2013 I made the transition into the spirits experience side of hospitality. I’ve been with Johnnie Walker for the last two years. A lot of our recruitment was based around character because we can train everything else but we are really looking for that energy and enthusiasm.

“The building boasts two incredible rooftop bars with stunning views over the city, especially on a day like this. That’s paired with world-class food and cocktails, plus there is the event space which could suit anything from a comedy gig to an album launch or an art show.

“There’s an optimism in the city and in the country right now and we want to be at the centre of that, supporting cultural initiatives in the city.

“We’re hopeful about international visitors returning, the buzz that creates. We’ve already had a great chance to showcase the building and our experiences to a local audience. A big part of the bar menu and the tour is tying into the four corners of Johnnie Walker, our distilleries, and I see this venue as the starting point for a whisky journey across different regions of Scotland.” 


“I have an academic background, a Master’s Degree in Product Design.

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“After university I had no idea what I was going to do and I went travelling for a few years, got some grounding in terms of what I want to be as a person.

“I started working on interiors for bars and restaurants in Edinburgh and Glasgow that were independent, doing interesting things and run by people full of passion and I found that very inspirational.

“I think the best bars and bartenders evolve and change. We use technology and equipment here to transform flavours, enhancing the whisky experience.

“Edinburgh has a beautiful close-knit community of bartenders, it’s a global hotspot, and we are inviting those people to work with us.

“For visitors, I see Princes Street as a portal through which people can explore the stories of the distillers and the array of colour, taste, and diversity within whisky.” 


“I was living in London, working for different agencies on live experiential events. I was involved in the logistics for the World Class Cocktail Competition, organised by the Diageo Bar Academy. We took over SWG3 for a week and built a series of bars, bringing bartenders from around the world from Amsterdam to the Isle of Skye and then to Glasgow. I’d moved back to Scotland at that stage and the opportunity came up to work on the opening of Johnnie Walker Princes Street.

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“We are seeing more events coming back now, with international clients looking to book this year. We have the Label Studio Event Space which is a modern blank canvas venue and I want to support local artists and have musicians in there.

“You don’t need to go on a tour experience to enjoy the venue. You can come into the bars for some food or there will be live performances I will be organising.

“We want to create a cultural landmark destination and bring in Scottish talent to the building, working with local partners.

“It’s going to be amazing to put them alongside our master blenders and the bartenders we can bring to events.

“For me, that’s a huge part of what Johnnie Walker will do here.”