Reviews of restaurants, pubs, hotels, and places to relax, shop, and meet away from the menace of piped music. The reviews are contributed by members of Pipedown: the campaign for freedom from piped music. Quiet corners was launched in June 2009. If you would like to contribute reviews, join Pipedown and help the fightback against Muzak.

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General Register House, Edinburgh

The beautiful Register House at the east end of Princes St is worth visiting as it's one of the most gorgeous buildings Robert Adams designed and it's open, free, to the public. You can go and have a look whether or not you're researching your ancestors and you can have a cup of tea in the basic, but musac-free, cafe in the back.

Approach the cafe through the grand front entrance or nip down the lane to the left hand side to get in the back. (Not recommended unless you've worked out the route.)

Location

2 Princes Street
EH1 3YY Edinburgh
UK
Place type: 
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Dawyck Botanic Gardens

A lovely arboretum set on a hillside in the Borders. You have to pay to get into the gardens but not into the cafe and garden shop. Coffee and snacks and soup at lunchtime. See their website http://www.rbge.org.uk/the-gardens/dawyck

Location

Stobo Near Peebles
EH45 9JU Scottish Borders
UK
Place type: 
Piped music status: 

Vane Farm Nature Centre

An RSPB reserve with several hides along the shore of Loch Leven and woodland walks on the hill above the centre.

There's a shop downstairs and a quiet cafe above with telescopes by the windows to look at the wildlife on the shore and the Loch. Good coffee and unusually good cafe food. The chef has removed speakers and has resisted attempts to introduce background music.

A good place to stop off for rest and refreshment on the drive north to Perth and the Highlands.

Location

Vane Farm Nature Centre By Loch Leven
KY13 9LX Near Kinross, Perth & Kinross
UK
Place type: 
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The Secret Herb Garden

A lovely place to visit just south of Edinburgh. Have coffee and cake in a large greenhouse full of growing things, or in various other corners. It's a nursery garden for herbs, full of interesting nooks and crannies. They also host weddings and other occasions. See their website secretherbgarden.co.uk

Location

32A Old Pentland Rd Lothianburn
EH10 7EA Edinburgh
UK
Piped music status: 

Tontine Hotel, Peebles

An elegant Georgian hotel with comfortable lounge, bar and dining rooms. They have no music before 5pm and then quiet background music. Good and reasonably priced coffee elegantly served. www.tontinehotel.com

Location

High St,
EH45 8AJ Peebles
UK
Place type: 
Piped music status: 

Muddy Boots Farm, Shop, Cafe and Kids Adventure Play

Extensive cafe and farm shop with attractive inside and outside seating areas. Good food and coffee with friendly and helpful staff. A real find in the countryside near Falkland. They have a no-musac policy in both shop and cafe. See their website www.muddybootsfife.com.

Location

Balmalcolm Cupar
KY15 7TJ
UK
Place type: 
Piped music status: 

La Barantine Victoria

Small French cafe, sister to the one in Bruntsfield. Very good coffee. Croissants, pastries, cakes to eat there or to buy to take away. Pleasant and attentive staff.
Although musac-free they do have radio spillage from the open kitchen door here too, which they have turned down for me on occasion.

Location

89 West Bow
EH1 2JP Edinburgh
UK
Place type: 
Piped music status: 

Delightful surprise in Salisbury

I was delighted yesterday to find the Giggling Squid, in Salisbury - which not only had a particularly delicious & varied tapas menu (yes - Thai tapas, a marvelous innovation) - but an equally delicious atmosphere of quiet & civility, though there may have been some occasional very low, soft music. Tapas sets of 4 dishes are £9.99, though we couldn't resist making our own selection, which was slightly more dear.

Location

32 Market Place
DSP1 1TL Salisbury
UK
Place type: 
Piped music status: 

Falko's Gullane Kaffeehaus, East Lothian

Bakery and cafe; a great place for coffee or lunch, a sister cafe to Falko's in Bruntsfield, Edinburgh. Delicious breads, cakes and pastries.

N.B. CLOSED on Mondays and Tuesdays.

See their website http://www.falko.co.uk

Location

1 Stanley Road
EH31 2AD Gullane, East Lothian
UK
Place type: 
Piped music status: 

Falco Konditormeister, Brunstfield

Bakery and cafe; a great place for coffee or lunch with delicious breads, cakes and pastries. Falko has won awards in Germany for his products. See also Falko's in Gullane, East Lothian. They have a stall at the Farmers' Market in Castle Terrace in Edinburgh every Saturday too.

NB All Falko's cafes are closed on Mondays and Tuesdays.
See http://www.falko.co.uk

Location

185 Bruntsfield Pl,
EH10 4DG Edinburgh
UK
Place type: 
Piped music status: 

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