Named after one of the most visionary leaders in the history of the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, the John Hope Gateway is one of the best visitor welcome buildings of any botanic garden in the world.

Completed in 2009 and opened by HM The Queen the following year, it was designed to create new spaces for exhibitions, education, dining, retail and events, enabling the public to learn more about the work of the Garden, as well as providing them with a light and airy space to socialise whatever the weather.

It has been included in the Royal Institute of Architecture’s list of the top 100 buildings in Scotland in the last 100 years. Edward Cullinan Architects were tasked with making the building as ‘green’ as possible, including a range of features make it more environmentally sustainable.

The Gateway was designed with the contours, paths and trees of the Garden in mind, providing a lens through which to experience it.

Features of the building include a 60m curved glass wall which provides views onto the biodiversity garden, a slate wall which guides visitors from the Gateway up towards the historic Inverleith House, and the beautiful curving staircase in the centre of the building, which creates different images in people’s minds – from a vine to a strand of DNA.

Enjoy the Gateway Restaurant and Botanics Shop, as well as temporary and permanent exhibitions, and a programme of events in the Real Life Science Studio.

    Campbell-Stokes sunshine recorder sits in its cradle on a plinth on a sunny day

    Stories from the Biomes: A Change in the Weather

    Every day for the last thirty years, rain or shine, Senior Horticulturist Bruce Robertson has climbed up on to the roof of the Temperate Palm House to change the Campbell-Stokes recorder's sunshine card. As the restoration on the Victorian Palm Houses begins, the recorder's solid crystal ball is stored away for safe keeping.
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    Garden Buildings: Introduction

    Building for Nature Buildings have been important to gardens for thousands of years – from the humble wooden shed for potting to magnificent glass palaces in which to...
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    Inverleith House

    Inverleith House was designed by David Henderson in 1773 and built the following year. It stood at the heart of Sir James Rocheid’s estate, which comprised not only...
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    Caledonian Hall

    Built by the Royal Caledonian Horticultural Society when this part of the Garden was under their care, the Caledonian Hall is a beautiful example of a Victorian exhibition...
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    East Gate Lodge

    William Henry Playfair was responsible for some of Edinburgh’s grandest buildings, including the Royal Scottish Academy and the National Gallery of Scotland, but the East Gate Lodge is...
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    The Herbarium

    Officially opened by HM The Queen in 1964, the Herbarium and Library was built to house the collection of three million preserved plant specimens held by the Royal...
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    The Linnaeus Monument

    This handsome monument honours the Swedish botanist Carl Linnaeus, who popularised a system of sexual classification of plants in the 18th century. It originally stood in the previous...
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    Main Glasshouse Range

    When built in 1967 the 128 metre long main glasshouse range was regarded as the greatest innovation in glasshouse design in a century. The then Curator of the...
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    The Temperate Palm House

    Completed in 1858, the Temperate Palm House is the tallest traditional Palm House in Britain, with a height of 21.95 metres. Designed by Robert Matheson, the glasshouse cost...
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    The Botanic Cottage

    Designed by two of the most renowned’ architects of the 18th century – John Adam (brother of Robert) and James Craig (designer of Edinburgh’s New Town plan) –...