We chose this hotel for an impromptu night's stay after perusing Ireland's Blue Book. We have found it in the past to be a useful way to select a slightly more 'special' type of accommodation or dining experience.
We (my fiancé, our 9 year old daughter and myself) requested the Penthouse room - as it was described as being spacious and very well appointed with beautiful views. I explained at the time of booking that our daughter would be staying in the room with us, and asked for a bed to be arranged to accommodate her. I was assured this was no problem whatsoever. We elected to avail of the one night dinner bed and breakfast offer at €260, although on the expensive side, we felt the accommodation should be at least up to Blue Book standards, so felt assured.
We arrived on a Saturday evening at 7pm, to be greeted by what I can only describe as a 'Saturday Girl'. She didn't think to lead us to our room - instead she walked behind us, which made things awkward as we hadn't a clue where our room was and the number of doors and stairs to negotiate en route meant we were constantly stopping and asking her where next?
On arrival at the Penthouse Room, I can only say that I was genuinely completely underwhelmed. The room was an average size but with huge bed eclipsing it (I think it was 2 singles pushed together with no duvet - just a sheet and blanket) - and more worryingly, no sign of a bed for our daughter. On mentioning this to the girl, she looked at us blankly and asked could our daughter not sleep in the bed with us?? (?!?!) When we suggested that perhaps she could arrange a bed to be made up for our daughter, she shrugged and returned a few minutes later with the restaurant manager. He too admitted he was at a loss as to know what to do, but could probably source a single bed from one of the other rooms, however didn't know where the bedlinen was so said he would have to phone the owner to get her to come in to make up the bed.
Slightly embarrassed for them, we suggested we would leave them to it, and hoped there would be a bed made up in time for our daughter's bed time! They assured us that this would be the case, and about an hour later the bed was squeezed in. This did however mean there was very little room to manoeuvre and we couldn't use the chest of drawers or the dressing table. Not quite the spacious penthouse experience we were lead to expect.
Incidentally the bedroom furniture was tatty and mismatched. The curtains were coming off at the hooks and although there was a sea view, there was condensation between the double glazing. Bulbs were blown in 2 of the lamps, and the complimentary toiletries.....well, suffice to say, unless they are of a reasonable quality, then just don't bother. Cheap complimentary toiletries are not better than none at all. But perhaps providing 2 bathrobes and disposable plastic wrapped slippers makes some clients feel they are in luxury accommodation?.....
Our visit improved when we ate in the renowned seafood restaurant - our meal was very pleasant and with a nice view. Our table was booked for 9pm but unfortunately we were the last and only table eating at this time, so the restaurant lacked atmosphere. I'd recommend an earlier dining time, but still would've expected more customers at 9pm on a Saturday night.
We were woken at 5am by the squawking of seagulls which perched on the roof outside our bedroom window for what seemed like eternity, but was really just an hour or so. Not something the hotel can do much about, and we appreciate being at the coast it is hardly surprising, but it did not allow us the relaxed Sunday morning lie-in we were hoping for.
In the morning, we had a very nice breakfast served in the restaurant. The owner was very attentive and welcoming, and was very helpful. It was handy being able to check out at the breakfast table.
I'd sum up by saying the restaurant is worth a visit, but for €205/night for the accommodation, I'd suggest going elsewhere for better value for money. The accommodation let down what otherwise would've been a pleasant experience in a nice area of Dublin.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Established in 1971, Aidan and Joan MacManus have earned an international reputation for fresh seafood in their harbour-side restaurant in the picturesque fishing village of Howth. In 1999, they extensively rebuilt their old Harbour Master's house, relocating the restaurant to the first floor with panoramic seaviews, and adding eight guest bedrooms. All the bedrooms are named after Lighthouses and have sea-views. DINING Fresh fish landed daily on Howth Pier, oysters and mussels from the west, lobster caught by our own fishermen in Balscadden Bay are among our specialities. Enjoy a pre-dinner drink in our East Cafe Bar while choosing your wine from our outstanding Wine List. National Hospitality Awards Best Seafood Restaurant 2014. We are situated in the golfing heartland of North County Dublin and for sailors Howth Marina is three minutes walk. Enjoy a gentle stroll on the Pier before breakfast or a more energetic hike on the unspoilt Cliff Path and the trails of Howth Head. For business, shopping or sightseeing, Dublin City is only 25 minutes by Dart. Dublin Airport 25 minutes. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- King Sitric Howth
- King Sitric Hotel Howth