Top hotels while venturing outside Dublin

Several hotels are available to those who would prefer to stay on the outskirts of Dublin. It tends to be quieter in these neighborhoods, far from the hustle and bustle of the city. When you need to go into town, there are adequate options for transport available as well.

Here are the top hotels outside Dublin, each hotel on this list offers high-quality service and incredible value within its market niche.

Ballyfin Demesne

Probably the best hotel in Ireland

Those who aren't restricted by a budget, should take a look at Ballyfin, which is arguably Ireland's best hotel. However, prices can be quite steep, set at 1000 euros per night and upward. The old manor house with its sweeping gardens make the ideal base for a wedding celebration or other formal event.

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Families will love it here as there is something for everyone to enjoy, from picnic lunches in the private gardens to dressing up in period costumes for a themed gourmet dinner. Activities sometimes need to be booked in advance to make sure a guide is available and all preparations have been made. A storyteller is available at the grotto to regale the children with Irish folk tales. A pony and carriage ride around the demesne can be arranged, followed by a boat trip on the lake. The list of activities and amenities is endless.

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This stunning hotel is likely Ireland's best hotel. Everything from the building, the history, and the service to the food, the rooms, and the bathrooms and amenities is just perfect and so very special. This is one of those spectacular hotels where you would spend all your time in and around it, exploring all it has to offer. It's not a place you would simply come back to in order to get some sleep after a day of sightseeing. Ballyfin is perfect for a short stay to recharge yourself, for a romantic weekend, or as a honeymoon destination. It’s also a great place for kids, but there are restrictions, and you’ll need to book the whole house to go there with kids aged under 9. Definitely go to Ballyfin if you can afford it.

900. to 1979 $

Radisson BLU St. Helen's Hotel

5 star hotel just outside Dublin

The Radisson BLU St. Helen's Hotel is an excellent hotel found just south of Dublin in Booterstown. Centuries ago, the town was a transit point between the residence of Ireland's High King at Tara and the king's lands closer to Bray. It can be reached by bus or train, and there's a frequent Aircoach shuttle service running between the town and the Dublin airport.

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The hotel is located in what used to be the headquarters of the Congregation of the Irish Christian Brothers. Prior to that it was owned by an MP, followed by a field marshal of the British Army. Booterstown is famous for its bird sanctuary in the marsh. There's also a dedicated circus fields where two circuses set up annual events. The hotel itself retains the glory of its origins as a stately manor with wide landscaped gardens.

The five-star hotel took over the building in 1998, even though it was listed as a National Monument four years earlier. A new wing was added but many of the old details remain, including a library in the main house. The meeting rooms are named for the house's previous owners and historical figures.

The Radisson BLU St. Helen's Hotel is ideal for conferences and celebrations such as weddings, but it is also a great destination if you want to stay in a quiet, beautiful environment just to take a break and recharge.

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Most of the rooms have splendid views of the estate, and of course, the rooms with balconies are the best. Guests can exercise with free access to the hotel's modern gym.

by Fáilte Ireland Very good score on Booking.com

The hotel features 151 non-smoking rooms and 25 business class suites, each room looks out on the lush gardens or Dublin Bay. Free WiFi is available throughout the hotel. The beds are covered in Egyptian cotton. Each room has a laptop safe and coffee/tea facilities.

122 to 547 $
99 to 221 $

Crowne Plaza Dublin Airport

Ideal business hotel close to Dublin airport

The Crowne Plaza Hotel Dublin-Northwood is 8 kilometers north of Dublin, it caters mostly to business guests, rather than tourists.

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This is the ideal business hotel if you need to stay close to Dublin airport, it's also great for hosting conferences. You’ll be right next to Santry park, which is perfect for joggers, and the hotel has a very well equipped gym. The rooms are spacious, and the prices are very fair.

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If you travel to Dublin quite often on business, this could become your base camp in the city. The hotel also has a large car park and a free shuttle service to the airport.

by Fáilte Ireland Fabulous score on Booking.com

There are 204 guest rooms and suites across four floors. Five suites are available, and 191 nonsmoking rooms are on offer. Pets are not allowed in the rooms; only service animals are permitted to stay with their owners. Each room comes with luxurious bedding on a king-sized bed, an aromatherapy spray, a minibar, and free Internet. The Executive Club Room comes with a work desk and leather office chair, as well as complimentary breakfast. Rooms can also come with two double beds or two single beds. There are five suites on offer, guests can choose between a king-bed suite and a royal suite, both featuring warm colors and luxurious bathrooms.

115 to 291 $
116 to 233 $
108 to 244 $

The Best Western Sheldon Park

The Best Western Sheldon Park, mostly frequented for its spa and leisure centre as well as its proximity to Dublin, is found in Bluebell, Dublin. It isn't quite in the same class as the Radisson Blu St. Helen's, so it's a bit cheaper.

As a suburb of Dublin, Bluebell was a market garden and farming neighborhood prior to the 50s. Families moved into the area when it was developed to include more housing. Eventually, the influx of paper mills and other industries led to the dramatic development and industrialization of the neighborhood. Despite this, there are no supermarkets or large shopping complexes here. There is only one pub and one church. A tram line serves the area and can take visitors into Dublin.

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Hotels by the sea

For those who want to live by the sea, as in fact the creators of this website do, several other options exist.

The Artist Residence Dublin

The Artist Residence Dublin is a small relaxing environment, providing a home away from home in Sutton.

Free WiFi is provided as well as free parking. Some rooms have their own private seating area, and there's a shared lounge available as well. Views of the sea or the mountains can be enjoyed from the rooms. Free toiletries and a hairdryer are available in the private bathrooms. Dublin Airport is only 9 kilometers away. A shuttle service is available for a surcharge. Packed lunches are offered for those who'd like to explore the area. The rooms are non-smoking areas, but there is also a designated non-smoking area on site.

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Breakfast can be taken in the room, and dietary preferences can be met with advance notice. Bookworms will find something to catch their interest in the library, while sun-worshippers will enjoy the beachfront. All children are welcome.

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The Marine Hotel

The Marine Hotel is great for those on a budget. Located by the sea near a fishing village, it features a spa, steam room, indoor pool and three dining spots. The guestrooms are spacious and comfortable.

Free WiFi is available along with the usual hotel amenities. This is a smoke-free property. The restaurants serve pub fare and buffet lunches. BBQ grills can be found on the picnic grounds. Business facilities are available.

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It is only 10 kilometers from Dublin Airport and innumerable attractions are within walking distance.

King Sitric

King Sitric is both a seafood restaurant and small guesthouse based in the fishing village of Howth. Those who live in Dublin will find this is a lovely place to retreat and enjoy the natural outdoors. Tourists will enjoy spending a day or two here as well before moving on to a property closer to Dublin to see the rest of the sights. Dublin Airport is 20 minutes away, and the city centre, accessible by DART, is 25 minutes away.

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The fish served in the restaurant is always fresh off the pier, and the wine list is excellent. The eight guestrooms are named after lighthouses and have sea views, where the higher floors have the best view. All rooms have an en-suite bathroom and are non-smoking.

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Fitzpatrick Castle Hotel

If you're willing to go as far as Killiney, you can check out the impressive Fitzpatrick Castle Hotel, which is served by an Aircoach service that shuttles guests to Dublin Airport around the clock. A bus route and DART rail service can also be used to get to Dublin.

Bono for U2 and Enya are among the famous residents in the area.

The hotel features its own leisure centre with a full gymnasium, a Scandinavian wood sauna, a steam room, and a 20-metre indoor swimming pool with an attached whirlpool spa. Fitness classes are offered on a fixed schedule, and guests are welcome to attend.

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Several dining options are available, including a grill restaurant in the castle's original dungeons, as well as a quiet space in the library to enjoy a few pre- or post-dinner drinks.


Carolyn John, 2015

UNIQUE VACATION