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“A freebie still needs to be reviewed.”
Review of Ballygally Castle

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Ballygally Castle
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Ballygally
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed May 7, 2013

I won a night at this lovely hotel as part of a raffle prize. I tried to book a Saturday but they were fully booked all through the summer which is a good sign. The hotel is part of the Hastings group and if I am brutally honest it's the forgotten cousin. However it only disappointed on a superficial level, it looked a bit tired. We had a lovely sea view room with the best bed in the world ever. We arrived and were privileged to watch the hotel host a local wedding which was beautiful. We had two seats in front of the fire and ordered a pint of Murphy's and a glass of wine to start our fab night away. Drinks were a bit pricey but again in the Hastings Group and that's what to expect. The restaurant was virtually empty so we had the full undivided attention of the very attentive hotel staff. I ordered a rib eye and oh my goodness it was the biggest steak ever. We over ordered on the sides which was a shame we couldn't finish the food was fabulous. We went back into the bar after our meal and had a few nigh caps and chatted with the wedding party. We had a great sleep and then up in the morning for a superb buffet breakfast, with all sorts to eat and very fine quality.

Room Tip: Ask for a sea view room, to wake up to this fabulous view in the morning.
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  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank Michelle S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,120 - 1,126 of 1,486 reviews

Reviewed May 7, 2013

An overnight stop, we had three rooms and arrived late in the middle of a wedding party. Dont know if it was luck or by design but our rooms were blissfuly quiet, in the old tower. Rooms well equipped with huge beds and soft bedlinen. Plumbing needs attention, shower came to a halt during morning peak hours which was unpleasant. Breakfast one of the best i have had, including fabulous locally produced granola, and Armagh apple juice. Meats were also locally sourced and there was a huge choice of well presented piping hot foods, with of course, potato and soda farls. I would happily return and happily recommend.

Room Tip: Tower for quiet and sea views
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  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled with family
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Thank gilmoreCoDurham
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 7, 2013

I recently spent 2 nights in Ballygally Castle. Overall the stay was very enjoyable. However there were some disappointments:
Very poor sound-proofing in rooms
No black out blinds on windows
Relatively poor breakfast selection
Free wifi only available in public areas.

Room Tip: We stayed in the tower (Glencoy). Main hotel rooms may be quieter.
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  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank grrnnw
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Stephen P, General Manager at Ballygally Castle, responded to this reviewResponded May 30, 2013

Dear grrnnw,

Thank you for choosing to stay at Hastings Ballygally Castle Hotel. We are delighted that you enjoyed your stay with us. You may rest assured that your constructive feedback has been acknowledged and will be addressed accordingly.

Yours Sincerely,

Stephen Perry
General Manager

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 5, 2013

Stayed here when attending a family wedding reception. The hotel is in a great location with views across the water to Scotland. The food provided at the wedding reception was tasty and appreciated after a long day. The room was very spacious and clean with a large, comfortable bed (I think it was two singles joined together). The bedroom was a bit stuffy for sleeping even with the window open but I think the heating was on. We only spotted the radiator in the morning as it was behind a table but if we'd turned it off before going to sleep it would probably have been ok. A field nearby was full of sheep and it was quite pleasant to wake up in the morning and hear them bleating away. The breakfast was of the buffet variety on an eat as much as you like basis and full of local produce. A comfortable hotel and I would stay here again.

  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled with family
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Thank Adrian D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 5, 2013

Myself and a friend recently enjoyed a girly night away at this hotel and everything from check in to check out was excellent. As we are both hotel receptionists we always love going to different hotels and experiencing everything, and we both said that it couldn’t have been better.

We checked in to our room which was really lovely with a beautiful view of the sea, the mountains and the hotel’s river that runs through the grounds. It was a great sized room complete with a sofa, large LCD tv, Aero hot chocolate, ipod dock and speakers, and the most comfortable beds that I have ever slept in a hotel – which made it very hard to get out off for breakfast the next morning.

We quickly went up to the room after check in and went back down to the restaurant for our afternoon tea & champagne which was included in the fantastic deal that I had bought online; I thought it was a nice touch that the waiter asked us if there was anything we didn’t like on the menu as sometimes afternoon tea items wouldn’t suit everyone, but we didn’t have to worry as it was all delicious; from the fresh sandwiches, scones, apple & cinnamon bread which was heavenly, to the all the wee pastries. We just mmmmmddddd…..all the way through it D: devine!!!!!

So as if we didn’t have enough to eat with this, we booked our table for an evening meal at 8.30pm in the lovely restaurant which has a huge fireplace with a huge coat of armour stood beside it and lovely views onto the hotel garden- this hotel is just full of character!! Our meal was absolutely delicious – you have to try the wild mushroom starter and the chicken cordon bleu for mains – even the side orders were gorgeous!!

Our next stop was the bar that has an extensive cocktail list which was exactly what we were looking for – strawberry daiquiri’s were off course a big hit….but even after a few of these…we didn’t quite pluck up the courage to go up to the ghost room up the tower – we did this the next morning during daylight hours!!! Like I said full of character and history which I can imagine is a great attraction for guests.

Breakfast the next morning was delicious – the breakfast is a serve yourself buffet with cereals, breads, pastries, croissants, and you even have your healthy options with fruit and yoghurt. There is a great range of hot items that are constantly being topped up so you are always getting fresh food…and I even went back for seconds :S - FOOD is most definitely this hotel’s forté!!!

I also have to mention the staff who were all so friendly and attentive and made our stay so enjoyable - all the barstaff were lovely and you were never waiting to get served – Andy & Taylor were particularly friendly!! Stephen the manager was really friendly as well and actually stayed up until all the wedding guests went to bed – I cant see this happening in too many hotels!!

I apologise for the long review but as a hotel receptionist, I appreciate when something is really good and deserves praise!! I will definitely be back!!

  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled with friends
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Thank whittlewoo20
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 2, 2013

Stayed here one night on a special offer which included afternoon tea.

My room was in the castle itself, not far from the famous ghost room, which of course I couldn't resist having a look at! Despite my disbelief, I found myself reluctant to turn out the light in the strange but cosy gothic style room, which included a turret with a desk in it and a partial view of the picturesque beach.

There was a high pressure shower (but no bath - even though there was a complimentary plastic duck!) The bed was huge with plenty of lovely big squelchy pillows, bathrobes and slippers.

Breakfast was good with a wide choice of items which the menu says are sourced locally. The cooked breakfast was the best I have had for a long time, with the eggs properly cooked, unlike a lot of hotels nowadays who serve the whites half raw. The waiter and waitress were really friendy and welcoming.

The walled garden is a must-see, with a river running through it to the sea and an arch which you can look through to see waves crashing on the shore (must be wonderful for wedding photos!)

The only complaint I would have was the girl at reception directing me up the precarious spiral staircase without making me aware thet there was also a lift that would have taken me to the 2nd floor from where I could also have accessed the castle.

  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled solo
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Thank Kabiven
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 29, 2013 via mobile

My Wife, my two children and myself visited the Ballygally Castle Hotel on 26 April 2013 for one night only. Food was very good and location beautiful. Staff very friendly and the resident ghost of Lady Isabella Shaw made the trip for my little 6 yr old girl, who talked for days afterwards about the Ghost Room in the Tower.
My only small criticism is that there was very little cereal choice and the cereal was very high up which made it very difficult to access for smaller folk. I am over 5 ft 10 in and i struggled!
Despite this small niggle, we had an excellent stay-thank you to all at Ballygally Castle and, of course to Lady Isabella!

  • Stayed: April 2013
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Thank Ian N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Ballygally Castle

Address: 274 Coast Road, Ballygally BT40 2QZ, Northern Ireland
Location: United Kingdom > Northern Ireland > County Antrim > Ballygally
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Ballygally
Price Range: $140 - $271 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Ballygally Castle 4*
Number of rooms: 54
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located on the scenic Antrim coast only 26 miles from Belfast and close to Larne, the Ballygally Castle faces the sandy beaches of Ballygally Bay. The Castle dates back to 1625 and is the only 17th Century building still used as a residence in Northern Ireland today. This enchanting hotel is full of character and charm. The many original castle features and antique furnishings also give the hotel a unique welcoming atmosphere. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Ballygally Castle Hotel Ballygally
Castle Hotel Ballygally
Ballygally Castle Northern Ireland

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