Circa 1780; No 13 with alterations of 1838, remodelled by WL Moffat (for himself), 1860; whole W facade reworked by James Aitken of Moffat and Aitken, 1874; conference centre to rear by Baron Bercott & Associates, 1984. Irregular 11-bay 3-storey basement and attic classical tenement originally containing 4-bay ground and 1st floor house to E (No 11, main stair now extends to 2nd floor), tenement stair at centre serving 1st floor flat and 2 double uppers (No 12), and 6-bay main door flat to W (No 13). Regular fenestration. 5 E bays of coursed rubble with ashlar margins; steps oversailing basement area to architraved doorpieces; corniced to centre bay (flush-panelled door and timber sunburst fanlight), later (presumably 1874) timber consoled pediment and surround to right bay (6-panel door in period with surround, 5-pane rectangular fanlight); 2 piend-roofed dormers, tripartite to left. 6 W bays with later applied Italianate facade; cream sandstone ashlar at ground, with channelled pilasters, Greek Doric entablature and cornice; round-headed windows with mask keystones and panelled aprons; Roman Doric porch with polished red granite columns to centre right bay; balustraded parapet with panelled piers repeated as aprons to 1st floor windows, set in Ionic aedicules; upper floors with channelled pilaster strips; moulded architraves and cill course to 2nd floor; overhanging consoled cornice with parapet as above; pair of large pedimented tripartite timber dormers.
Irregular rubble rear elevations with 2 nepus gables (broader to W). Round-headed stair window with intersecting glazing to No 11. Former gardens covered by modern conference centre (accessed under stair and from No 9).
Timber sash and case windows; 12-pane to E, plate glass and 4-pane to W. Grey slates; rendered stacks.
NO 11: Hall with bracketed cornice; fluted pilastered panelled arch to horseshoe stair on axis; plain square iron banisters. Dining Room to E at ground; fluted Corinthian pilastered recess with swagged frieze, now filled, and panelled dado; later reinforcing ceiling beam runs across front rooms. Rear room with swagged cornice. 1st floor gutted for conference facilities. Stair with concrete extension to 2nd floor (former double upper) with central corridor; attic stair at E end. Principal front rooms with good carved chimneypieces and panelled dados.
NO 12: tenement stair with wrought-iron lamp brackets; brass doorpulls; door to 1st floor flat with tall round-headed fanlight and strip-pilastered architrave; further panelled door later addition, giving access to No 11; rectangular fanlights at 2nd floor. 1st floor flat with central corridor; large 3-door niche at entrance end and arch to main hall; plain moulded cornice. Front E Drawing Room with carved and gesso chimneypiece with scrolling foliage and central swag, incorporating possibly later cast metal anthemia; veined black marble slips with grey marble beading; dado and leaf cornice. Front W Dining Room with delicate carved and gesso chimneypiece, veined grey marble slips with beading; panelled dado, subliminal sideboard recess; plain moulded cornice. Rear rooms with simple chimneypieces (swagged to right and centre right), dado rails and plain moulded cornices; former kitchen to left. 2nd floor flat with central corridor. Front rooms (Drawing Room to left, Dining Room to right) with chimneypieces carved with swags, urns and griffons (to left), cherubs (to right) panelled dadoes, fielded to left; leaf cornice to left, bracketed cornice to right; Dining Room with D-shaped sideboard recess. 19th century chimneypieces to rear; timber consoled at centre, plain stone to right.
NO 13: ground floor and basement office, reworked in 19th century; banister to basement stair boxed in. Large front room with modillioned cornice; divided room to rear with deep arched recess to either end, identical cornice..
FRONT WALLS AND RAILINGS: simple cast-iron railings to E; ashlar wall with coping and base course (apeing Nos 9 and 14) to W.
Statement of Special Interest
The only rubble faced building on Queen Street, ironically originally sandwiched between two of the finest ashlar facades in the street. It is of great interest not only for the arrangement of dwellings, but also their quality; as well as for the applied palazzo facade to the three W flats. This building constitutes a significant surviving part of the original fabric of Edinburgh?s New Town, one of the most important and best preserved examples of urban planning in Britain; Queen Street was built to take advantage of the northern views, and has survived remarkably unaltered to this day. Elizabeth Grant of Rothiemurcus stayed in No 11 in 1815, and described it as ?a very gloomy old barrack ... on the front of which the sun never shone, and which was so built against behind there was no free circulation of air through it?. She found the rooms, which were not interconnecting, inconvenient for parties, a problem later remedied in many Queen Street houses. Owned by the Royal College of Physicians, who only occupy
No 11, which connects with No 9 and their new conference centre.