My wife and I stayed two nights this past week at Ross and Kathleen Birnie's guest house, 23 Mayfield. I echo (minus the part about his daughter, although we saw plenty of evidence that the guest house is very child-friendly) everything wolfgang325 said below about his June, 2019, stay. Simply put, in a decades-long career of overseas residence and travel, this is one of the best places we have every stayed. The Birnies run a classy operation, and everything was perfect. The house is not in downtown Edinburgh, but a public bus stop is two blocks away, with frequent and good service down a main thoroughfare to downtown; the ride takes fifteen minutes. But it's not even worth investigating the famous downtown hotels, or any other lodging possibilities, for that matter. This is the place to go. TomW, 10 August 2019.
We also recently stayed at 23 Mayfield (Gardens) and can vouch for the positive comments posted by others. Kathleen and Ross provide a warm and professional experience, far exceeding any of the B&B’s we have stayed at. The breakfasts are exceptional: quality food, well prepared. The condition of the room was impeccable. Their location is just far enough from the hubbub of the city center to be peaceful, but only a 10 minute bus ride to all of the major sites.
We recommend this as a fine, safe, and convenient location to stay during a visit to Edinburgh.