It was common in the late 19th and early 20th centuries for railroads to build lavish hotels next to their main stations. North British Railway followed this trend in Edinburgh. William Beattie’s Victorian design opened as the North British Hotel in 1902. The Forte Group purchased it in 1983 and then closed it during a £23 million renovation. The Scottish actor Sean Connery presided over the reopening of The Balmoral in 1991. The five-star hotel has welcomed countless famous people, including J. K. Rowling. The author completed the last Harry Potter book in room 552.