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Friday, February 3, 2012

Choosing the best Dundee Hotels from the crowd for your Scottish visit.

By Martin Fourfields

All Dundee Hotels have a rating assessment. Until recently, assessment criteria have varied not only between the different home nations, but between assessment bodies within those domestic borders. "Under the old English system, you can get a very good idea of the facilities provided by a hotel but not necessarily the level of luxury it offers, North of the border, by contrast, Scotland's tourist authority had tended to focus more on the warmth of the welcome and the degree of comfort afforded to visitors. Add to this mix a range of highly popular independent guides published by the AA and, until relatively recently, the RAC, and finding any sort of consensus on your potential digs could prove a hit-and-miss affair.

The city of Dundee, being on a relatively small land space, is the most densely populated area in Scotland after Glasgow and around fifth in the UK overall. It is characterized by tall tenements, mainly four storey's high, Victorian, and built from a honey or brown sandstone. The inner districts of the city, as well as some of the outer estates, are home to a number of multi storey tower blocks from the 1960s, although these have been gradually being demolished in recent years. The outer estates are among some of the poorest urban districts in the United Kingdom. To the east of the city area is the distinct but incorporated suburb of Broughty Ferry.

Dundee's maritime and shipbuilding industry was once a major economic force. At its height, 200 ships per year were built in there, including Robert Falcon Scott's Antarctic research vessel, the RRS Discovery. This ship is now on display at Discovery Point in the city. A significant whaling industry was also based in Dundee, largely existing to supply the jute mills with whale oil. Whaling ceased in 1912 and shipbuilding ceased in 1981. The town was also the location of one of the worst rail disasters in British history, the Tay Bridge disaster. The first Tay rail bridge was opened in 1879. It collapsed less than a year later during a storm, as a passenger train passed over it, resulting in the loss of 75 lives.

Gardyne's Land, located at 71 High Street, is a collection of five unique and interesting historical buildings. The Merchant's House (part of the complex) is the oldest, built by John Gardyne around 1560. The house is recognized as Dundee's oldest house. All of the houses have been restored and converted into a backpackers hostel.

Dundee is home to two universities and a student population of approximately 17,000. The University of Dundee became an independent entity in 1967, after 70 years of being incorporated into the University of St Andrews during which time it was known initially as University College and latterly as Queen's College. Significant research in biomedical fields and oncology is carried out in the "College of Life Sciences". The university also incorporates the Duncan of Jordanstone School of Art and Design and the teacher training college. The University of Abertay Dundee was founded as Dundee Institute of Technology in 1888. It was granted university status in 1994 under the Further and Higher Education Act, 1992. The university is noted for its computing and creative technology courses, particularly in computer games technology.

The choice available of Dundee Hotels to visitors is quite varied and can suit ones budget and expectations. From two to five star accommodations the city boasts a hospitable Scottish welcome to one and all.

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