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Review: Bewley's Hotel, Ballsbridge

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bewley's hotels

bewley's hotels

bewley's hotels

A relaxed atmosphere and lashings of old-school glamour combine to make Bewley’s a hotel with genuine character.

WHY: Close to Sandymount strand and the city centre, its location is hard to beat. The three-star hotel has a family-friendly policy and relatively reasonable prices — both rare commodities in the heart of plush Dublin 4.

HIGH POINTS: The towering redbrick building is a work of art in itself. It was built in the 1880s as a Freemasons’ school and there are Masonic symbols, such as the beautifully tiled Square and Compass inside the doorway, still to be found. Enjoy good, honest food followed by a coffee or tea from the generous selection in each room — this is Bewley’s after all.

LOW POINTS: The hotel’s dated decor, all dark woods and heavy fabrics, won’t be to everyone’s taste. It was somewhat odd to find a small wardrobe with no door in an otherwise well appointed room. Perhaps the size is because there’s no need to bring dressy clothes for dinner — jeans and trainers are not out of place in The Brasserie Restaurant.

CONCIERGE’S CHOICE: There are, of course, plenty of dressy restaurants elsewhere in Ballsbridge. The front desk recommended Roly’s Bistro and Belucci’s just down the road, or The Chophouse, recently featured in the Michelin Eating Out In Pubs guide, which is a short taxi ride away.

BEST FOR: Families. On the doorstep of the RDS and the Aviva Stadium, much of the Bewley’s clientele are family groups in town for a special event. A two-course set-menu dinner for two adults and two children under 12 is just €50 if booked with the room. On Sundays kids eat free and there’s entertainment provided for them. The spacious atrium next to Tom’s Bar means they can run around in the evenings while the adults enjoy a drink.

GUESTS OF HONOUR: The eclectic collection of celebrities who have stayed here includes Coolio, Xzibit, Sinead O’Connor, Tommy Bowe, Gillian McKeith and Rafael Benitez.

ASK FOR ROOM NO: Located in the oldest part of the building, the Tower Suite is laid out across three floors. There are beautiful stained glass windows throughout, leading to a window-seat right at the top where you can see out over Dublin bay.

RATES: A one-night stay in a double room costs from €99 per room midweek and €189 at weekends with an additional charge for breakfast. The hotel is open for Christmas, when a two-night stay plus Christmas dinner costs from €248 per room.

CONTACT: 01-668 1111 / bewleyshotels.com

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