Memorial Sketch Book
1863-90.—The Regent Hotel.
The good name of Mr Darling had travelled before
him to Edinburgh, so that, although the risks were large, the
landlord was willing to accept his character alone as sufficient
guarantee that all obligations would be surely and honourably met.
And he was not mistaken in his confidence. There were already a
considerable number of hotels in Edinburgh conducted on the
lines of total abstinence, in common with Mr Darling's. But the
distinguishing feature of this hotel from the beginning was that the
religious element was systematically, though not obtrusively,
wrought up with its whole administration. It was happily remarked by
one of the guests that Mr Darling truly "made room for Christ in the
inn." Visitors coming to Edinburgh with something more than a
Christian name were attracted to it in increasing numbers, because
it brought them into intercourse with persons of congenial spirit,
and continued to them many of the enjoyments and privileges of a
Christian home. Not only from numerous places in our own kingdom,
especially during the great Ecclesiastical Assemblies, but from
America and the British colonies, there was an annual influx of
guests, the same countenances, in not a few cases, re-appearing from
year to year.