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“a country gem”

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The Ice House Hotel
Ranked #2 of 9 Hotels in Ballina
Certificate of Excellence
Dublin, Ireland
Level Contributor
113 reviews
50 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 78 helpful votes
“a country gem”
Reviewed November 10, 2008

spent a lovely weekend here recently and was very impressed with the architecture, even more impressed with the wonderful staff who are just nice people to deal with.
The food was very good, ambiance and service matching.
The room was excellent with the best bed I have slept in anywhere. A view to die for in the morning , looking across the
river to the woods beyond in their Autumnal splendour with a fine selection of birdlife in attendance and the occasional seal swimming past.
I will be back.

  • Stayed November 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank hikerire
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
liverpoolfcmad, General Manager at The Ice House Hotel, responded to this review, December 3, 2008
Dear HikerIreland,

Thank you for taking the time to post a trip advisor review.

We are always very grateful for any feedback which can help us imporve our service levels our committment is to ensure each guest has a memorable stay with us.

I will be sure to pass on your gracious comments to the team throughout the Ice House.

Looking forward to welcoming you back, in the near future, to the Ice House.

Dara Cruise & Claire O'Sullivan
General Managers
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (271)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Ireland
Level Contributor
56 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 48 helpful votes
Reviewed October 29, 2008

Spent a midweek break here, which was very nice indeed, and which can be recommended. The room was stylish, relaxing and had a wonderful view which is exploited to the full by the window design. We had a dinner break, and the food was excellent and plentiful, with lots of little extras which made it memorable. Staff overall were very pleasant and friendly - champagne on arrival was great and perfect after a long drive.

But...

There were niggly faults which really should be ironed out for a hotel aspiring to this standard. TV and entertainment were not working and it took several requests to sort it out! A long wait to be seated for dinner (even though it was not full and we had booked ages before). Burnt toast at breakfast - very surprising - and also items listed on the breakfast menu weren't included in the actual breakfast e.g. no white pudding (lazy) and honey wasn't local or homemade (Bonne Maman from Mayo?). Oh and the spa was small, hot tubs were not available, hot room was slightly warm, and the shower is a bit of a joke - surely the staff don't believe the guff they deliver about this? The housekeeping might be improved too - the welcome note from the last guest was on the floor, and the candles in the bathroom were all used before.

However, these faults were minor enough, and did not detract too much from a very pleasant and relaxing stay.

  • Stayed October 2008
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank komuso
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
TheIceHouse, General Manager at The Ice House Hotel, responded to this review, December 6, 2008
Dear Komuso,

Firstly thank you for taking the time to write a trip advisor review. I was delighted to read you enjoyed your stay with us.

It is only with both positive and constructive comments that we are able to grow and develop our people and product, which we believe is the key to our contiuned success.

There was a number of points in your review that offered us and our team feedback where we needed to improve our service levels and indeed the attention to detail around the hotel, for this we are very grateful.

Looking forward to welcoming you back to the Ice House

Dara Cruise & Claire O'Sullivan
General Managers
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dalkey, Ireland
Level Contributor
6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed October 21, 2008

I stayed with my wife and we found the location, staff, welcome and food exceptional!
We were greeted warmly and the room was lovely.
The food was also exceptional, as good as anywhere I have eaten and reasonably priced for the quality we received.
The ambience is relaxed yet attentive, the staff are friendly and pleasant.
I cannot rate this hotel highly enough.
It is a bit outside of Ballina itself, which I think is a good thing, as you truly can "get away from it all" The location on the river Moy is spectacular and the view in the morning from the room over the river is magnificent. Taxis into the town are cheap and easily obtained, and there are some good pubs in the town and also a short walk (3 mins) down the quay to Crocketts.
There is a spa which I did not partake of, but the rooms available for reading and relaxing are very good.

  • Liked — Location, staff
  • Stayed October 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank dalkey_island
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
TheIceHouse, General Manager at The Ice House Hotel, responded to this review, December 6, 2008
Dear dalkey_island,

We would like to thank you for taking the time to post your expereince on trip advisor.

We were delighted to read about your stay in the Ice House. We will be sure to share your positive comments throughout the hotel with the team and congratulate them on a job well done.

Looking forward to welcoming you back to the Ice House in the near future.

Claire O'Sullivan & Dara Cruise
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dublin, Ireland
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed October 15, 2008

The Ice House hotel is wonderfully luxurious. We drove from Dublin and brought our bags into the lobby. At the check-in the receptionist welcomed us and asked us if we would like a glass of champagne in the parlour. Somebody shimmered by and took our bags to our room. We enjoyed the champagne sitting in the softly lit glass room beside the parlour.

We had eaten on the way down so decided not to eat in the Pier restaurant. Instead we had a mojito and a strapple from the cocktail menu. These were the best cocktails I've ever had. Fresh mint, Havana Club rum - only the best ingredients.

The room was sumptuous. The plasma TV had a DVD player built in and there was quite a large list of DVDs to choose from. One of the options on the TV was Apple-TV which allowed us to listen to a large selection of music on the surround sound system. There was an impressive basket of goodies waiting for us. Fudge (and not the Cadbury's kind I might add), jelly babies in a jar, Kettle crisps, half bottle of wine etc.

The bed was huge and covers were soft and welcoming. Heavy curtains concealed the floor-to-ceiling windows.

The staff were extremely helpful without being irritatingly familiar. We really enjoyed our lingering breakfasts which were a feast of fresh fruits, juices, smoothie, poached eggs with pancetta, fried mushrooms. I couldn't stomach any more of the hot food though there was also a selection of cereals including the Ice-House muesli mix. The helpful staff were always there to suggest that we might want a fresh pot of tea or some more toast.

Dara Cruise the General Manager personally greeted us as we were sipping our cocktails. You really knew that if anything were amiss that he was there to put it right. Of course everything was perfect so he didn't get a chance to.

There were bottles of Ballygowan in the fridge in our room along with a little jug of fresh milk for our tea- so much nicer than the little plastic tubs UHT milk.

There were some other nice touches such as a handwritten note in our room from the two General Managers (Dara Cruise and Claire O'Sullivan). My girlfriend was particularly impressed with the GHD hair straighteners in the room. If you wanted breakfast would be delivered to the room at no extra cost.

We had an amazing dinner in the Pier Restaurant. I had the sea-bass and my girlfriend had the turbot as mains. I wish I could write like a food critic. 'Delicate','superior','delectable','mouth-watering' these are some of the adjectives I would use. However, as I am not a critic I'll have to suffice with 'damn good'. The second night we only had a main but that still meant that we were served tomato bread and walnut bread with butter and pesto. Then there was a little mini-serving of gazpacho soup which I didn't think I'd like but which turned out to be delicious. There was a blood orange sorbet to cleanse the pallet before the main meal arrived. Very impressive. The locally sourced fillet steak was magnificent. The side orders were very generous.

I'm counting the days before we can go back to spend another few nights in blissful luxury.

  • Liked — Food, staff, sumptuous room
  • Disliked — Hmmm. What's not to like!
  • Stayed October 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank niceguyeddie99
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
TheIceHouse, General Manager at The Ice House Hotel, responded to this review, December 6, 2008
Dear niceguyeddie99,

Thank you for taking the time to share your expereince with the trip advisor readers.

We were very grateful for your kind words and we will be sure to pass them around the hotel, thanking all the team for their hard work.

Looking forward to welcoming you and your GHD loving girfriend back to the Ice House in the near future.

Dara Cruise and Claire O'Sullivan
General Managers
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dublin
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed October 10, 2008

Stayed here for a weekend at the start of October and was delighted with my experience. I had read some of the reviews here and looked forward to my stay, from the moment we landed at reception, bags in tow, we were treated as valuable guests. This may sound like the norm but as many of you have experienced it isn't always the case in 'Top' quality hotels. We were greeted warmly, given a walkaround of the hotel facilities and history of the building which houses the hotel.

We stayed on the top floor in a standard deluxe Riverside room. The room was very spacious,I recently stayed in a very trendy London boutique hotel and the room there was half the size of ours in the Ice House! Beautiful view of the river, really nice design and furniture/fittings. My partener is a designer and informed me that the chair alone at the desk was worth thousands. They have chosen well and it makes a difference in class to the character of the place. Bed was exceptionally comfortable and a complimentary turn-down service is offered each evening, along with a handy little information sheet about the following day; with weather reports and suggestions of activities that are available.

The weather the weekend we stayed was very rainy but our enthusiasm was not dampened, we launched ourselves with gusto, into the restaurant. 'Pier' as it is called for obvious reasons to those who have visited, has recently been the recipient of some fantastic reviews from arguably some of Irelands most high profile critics. This is another of the reasons we chose to stay here, I can't pretend to be as knowledgable as these food critics but we were wholly in agreement. Food was the best I have had in a considerable time, the service was excellent, with a number of very nice touches, the prices are Dublin prices but in this case they are justified.

On the Sunday we availed of the Spa, I didn't use the thermal suites, instead deciding on a facial and hot stone massage. Had a great experience. Genuinely felt so relaxed and re-invigorated after, didn't want to leave! The girl who looked after me was very professional and excellent at her job, with a great manner.

There are some very minor niggles which some of the previous reviewers mention which I would agree with. Some of the finishes were a little rough, but a lot of this is due to quality of builders rather than the fault of the hotel and I was assured by management that these things were being ironed out. Being a very new hotel I think it takes a little time to correct all the snags of a new build.

All in all though, we had a fantastic weekend in one of Irelands rising stars, we will most definitely be visiting again in the near future to get our 'fix'. Thanks to the management team and staff of Ice House!

  • Liked — Room and Food
  • Disliked — Bathroom was a little dusty, minor niggle
  • Stayed October 2008
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank carlinfella
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Newbridge, Co. Kildare
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed October 6, 2008

We stayed here on the weekend of 3rd/4th of October. We were in a standard deluxe room, with comfortable furnishings and a fabulous view of the Moy esturary from the full width and height window. I would agree with a previous reviewer regarding lack of privacy if your room was near the balcony/resturant. The room itself was modern and comfortable, it was a nice size but I have in larger standard rooms. The bathroom was very nice and a lovely combination of lighting options to make romantic. Excellent variety of tolietries available too. I did have a couple of issues with the room mainly because it is so new, bedside lamp not working/about to fall off wall, some handles on drawers loose and a lack of shelve space for clothes - fine for a weekend stay but any longer you will working out of the suitcase.

The hotel itself was a combination of renovated old meets new modern which I am not sure works for me and I do not think it will age well in time either. The spa itself was small, the hot/heat room was not that warm, the steam room was out of order due to a leak amd the experience shower was a dissappointment. I did not book a treatment for myself but my wife got a full body message which she found to be excellent. The outdoor hot tub was very cool with a fantastic view however its lack of privacy from being over looked from the main road footpath above and the resturant made it a little unsettling. You also have to walk either through reception or through the restaurant to get to the spa.

The food in the resturant was excellent and the service top class. The floor manager was very knowledgeable about the menu and wine list. The menu is pricey but on a weekend package it worked out excellent value. Cocktail bar was lacking in atmosphere i thought. The breakfast buffet was excellent with a fabulous choice of cheeses's and fresh fruits and a good menu selection too. The hot buffet on morning one was excellent but sadly on morning two it was not ! Same hot offering but visibly different and did not taste the same (a different chef I suspect!). For a reasonable alternative resturant try Crookets which is 5 minutes walk. it was good value and had a nice pub atmosphere.

Overall a nice quirky boutique hotel, with execellant food and good staff. An ideal couples getaway/pamper weekend.

  • Liked — Resturant Food
  • Disliked — Size/facilities of Spa (dissappointing).
  • Stayed October 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank Curragh1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Ice House Hotel

Property: The Ice House Hotel
Address: The Quay, Ballina, Ireland
Location: Ireland > Western Ireland > Province of Connacht > County Mayo > Ballina
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#2 Luxury Hotel in Ballina
#2 Romantic Hotel in Ballina
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — The Ice House Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 32
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Contemporary chic meets old world elegance throughout the Ice House. Funky furnishings, eclectic styling and stunning architectural design combine to make you feel like you're in the heart of the city. One look at the unrivalled riverside views from all our rooms and you'll immediately know you're not. The distinct, interior fusion of traditional and new styles are woven in to an eclectic mix. Together they form the perfect accent to the amazing views that stretch across the River Moy to the woodlands beyond. With great service, fantastic food, fine wines, clever cocktails and a hotel spa guaranteed to sooth... ...Discover the best of both worlds at The Ice House and make it your escape to the extraordinary. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Ice Hotel Ballina
The Ice Hotel

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