Official Guide to Edinburgh
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Phil MacHugh

Scottish media personality Phil MacHugh started his colourful career as a Gaelic TV presenter and is one of the city’s most connected PR professionals. As Edinburgh’s ‘It Boy’, with a going-out column in Edinburgh Now, he’s the man in the know when it comes to socialising in the city centre.

When I hear the words ‘This Is Edinburgh’, the first thing that springs to mind is…

The City of Festivals. We forget how lucky we are to have so many globally renowned festivals on our door step every year. Edinburgh is the envy of most European cities boasting historic buildings, its beautiful picture-perfect landscapes and a vibrant buzz created by the hundreds of thousands who visit us during Hogmanay, The Fringe and the abundance of events that bring visitors back year after year.

What makes me particularly proud to come from/live/work in the city is…

I first came to Edinburgh to study Journalism over ten years ago and quickly fell in love with its idyllic surroundings. This is a beautiful city with an international community and I am proud of its culture in particular, as the city preserves and protects its past but is ambitious in carving out its future.

My best memory of the city centre is...

As they say, 'there is no party without punch' and well, I guess I'm the punch! I have been lucky enough to attend some of the best events and parties the capital has thrown but nothing quite beats a mid-summer day basking in the hot sun while sipping cocktails on George Street. It's the ideal place to be 'spotted' starting at Gusto and ending on the roof top terrace at Harvey Nichols. 

Edinburgh still surprises me when…

I venture into a new restaurant. Edinburgh is a city for food lovers. We have something to suit everyone’s taste buds. From Michelin star restaurants like Tom Kitchin's at the Shore to street food treats like 'Ting Thai Caravan' near Bristo Square, meat lover paradise at 'Steak Edinburgh' on Picardy Place and those hidden little gems like Monteiths on Royal Mile. It constantly excites me to discover new cuisine and dining venues in the capital. 

A perfect day in Edinburgh starts with… 

A swim at the Scotsman Spa and Gym! Nothing wakes you up better than a splash in the pool and the Scotsman's gym on Market Street is where I escape to before a day in the media world.

As Edinburgh’s IT boy; the place to be in the city centre on a Saturday is...

At a party! Whoever said staying in was the new going out is wrong! Edinburgh's nightlife is superb. I tend to start my Saturday nights at Candy Bar on George St or Tonic Bar on North Castle then it's VIP style to Opal Lounge, Why Not or Lulu for a shimmy on the dance floor or a shot at the bar.