Style Hotel: The House Hotel Galway

April 18, 2011

Daily Digest, Lifestyle

Style Hotel: The House Hotel Galway

I was asked to review this hotel for Independent.ie and thought you might like to hear about it too.

First impressions

Checking in at 12pm was the order of the day, as we wanted to explore all that the City of the Tribes had to offer and despite official check in not opening until 3pm, we were duly accommodated by the receptionist who placed our bags in a locker room.

We returned that evening to find guests relaxing in the lounge reading, listening to a live jazz band, chatting or sipping sun downers at the bar with others musing over dinner menus.

Room to book

Four of the hotel’s suites have views over Galway Harbour, but our choice was a triple deluxe room, which,  like all of the other hotel rooms,  has triple glazed windows, air conditioning, a flat screen TV, free WIFI, a safe, bathrobe & slippers and even a complimentary hotel umbrella –  a necessity given Galway’s temperamental weather.

The in-room mini-bar is listed as having an “honesty policy” which didn’t live up to its reputation, when, upon leaving we felt slightly interrogated with a member of staff asking to check the mini bar before we departed.

All rooms are individually designed and the boutique feel flows through every room in the place (all 40 of them), with tastefully printed wall paper, funky bright furniture and many mirrors and paintings in the corridors and communal areas.

The huge brown and white tiled bathroom was a joy (there’s something about hotel rooms that draws lures me into their bathrooms first), with raised double hand basins, a bath and separate shower (with rain dance shower head), separated from the main room by a green frosted glass door.

The bed made for serious snoozing and the writing desk and chair, plush chaise longue, leather couch and satin printed curtains all fused together to create a contemporary feel.

Heads on pillows, a blissful night’s sleep followed and silence reigned in the room despite the fact that the popular residents bar downstairs serves drinks and pumps out the tunes until as long as the last resident standing wishes to partake in the fun.

You can watch my video of the inside of the hotel room here.

The food

Fancy an afternoon cuppa and slice of cake? The House Hotel has it sorted, with freshly baked cakes on delectable display in the lounge area. The restaurant serves modern Irish cuisines with an emphasis on fresh, seasonal produce in a homely setting that mixes province style tables with leather and cane seats. Although we didn’t dine there that evening, the staff were quick to recommend nearby eateries which met our brief but did enjoy the hotels continental breakfast (served until 11am) the following morning, which included optional extras made to order such as a fry or mini fry, scrambled eggs, Eggs Benedict, pancakes or porridge.

The pamper factor

The House Hotel is a cool, stylish hotel, there’s no doubt about it.  And the fact that it’s family run just adds to its feel good factor.

A nearby beauty spa offers in-room beauty and spa treatments but during our stay we opted instead to chill in The Relax Lounge on one of the many comfy couches (we tried all three of them), enjoying a bookshelf of novels and marvelling at the three different lounge areas with a decor that was funky yet not ostentatious and bright without being loud.

What to do

A stone’s throw away from the buzz of Quay Street, The House Hotel is located in Galway’s Latin Quarter, just five minutes from Spanish Arch. Such a city central location comes with a one drawback though – there’s with no hotel parking on site but guests do get discounted parking at the nearby Hynes Yard multi-storey car park  –  €8 for 24 hours.

The hotel’s cocktails are infamous and go down a treat with the trendy guests while the Outback Terrace looks like a great setting for al fresco get-togethers.

Check out Shop Street’s boutiques and shops while Quay Street’s eateries and trad music sessions in pubs are buzzing with people and a good vibe that spills onto outdoor seating areas.

The damage

A one-night stay midweek in a standard room costs from €119 per double room and includes breakfast. Check the hotel’s website for ever updated offers.

The details

The House Hotel, Spanish Parade, Galway.  Tel.  (091) 538 900. http://www.thehousehotel.ie

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