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Travel Blogs from Donegal
Well we have FINALLY received our flight details and this day next week we will be mid-air!! The nerves have definitely kicked in as this all becomes real. It's time to start packing, this will be ...
... t feel the need to tell us the day before. It's sunny this morning, and the few clouds in the sky are white and fluffy. We take a walk along the seaside path after packing the car. It's breezy, but warm and the views as we walk along the cliff are stellar. The sandy beach lays below us and tide pools and rocky outcroppings touch the cliff side. The water is so clear you can see the ocean floor and the rocks below. When we return to the car we head to Sligo, the home of ...
... for lunch at Galway this is a busy city with cobblestone streets , many shops, cafés, buskers & bars. After lunch we drove to Knock with its modern cathedral and finally to Sligo , excursion tonight to Irish pub for drinks and ...
Headed to the North-West and the Belleek Pottery factory. This was originally founded by John Caldwell-Bloomfield. He married into the Caldwell family. Went on the tour through the factory. Bought a small piece to bring home in the luggage. Could have spent a lot of money! Next stop was Castle Caldwell. This was in ruins and very overgrown. Travelled the scenic route beside Lower Lough Erne and then headed to Kilkeel where we are staying the night with ...
... What day this week? There are 7.
What time? 24 hours in a day.
What pub? There are 600+.
And you expect me to find you how??
Yet, as an overly excited me does...I went out. Looking, asking, searching.
I think i walked into 15 pubs. And at midnight 6 hours later, i walked sober back to the hostel.
You would think I would have given up. But no.
I do need a life though.
How has this hotel rated in the past?
Historical Traveler Reviews Harvey's Point Donegal
we stayed in harvey's point, lough eske on saturday night the 18th of february 2006.
about 7 miles outside of donegal town in the south of county donegal.
beautiful reception area with set down area just outside the front door with plenty of (free) car parking in the hotel grounds. very friendly and professional receptionist with quick check in. our room was on the 2nd floor of the new extenstion (an executive suite). short walkway from reception to elevator which was spotlessly clean.
absolutely huge. the suite consisted of a very large bedroom with a bed that is about 7' wide. the room also had: 2 armchairs, a chaise, a coffee table, a writing desk, a table and two further chairs (set into the bay window of the room so that you can enjoy the view over the lake), numerous lamps and huge big cushions to lounge on. the tv was a flat screen 32" affair which swivelled so that you could watch it from various places in the room.
the ensuite bathroom was the size of a small living room with very big bath, vanity area with a mirror which had great lighting all around it, double sink area, bidet, wc, double size shower which also had separate shower attachment for just washing hair if you did not want to take a full shower. underfloor heating made it very comfortable and the room had plenty of snow white towels.
there is a separate bar/kitchen area with a fully stocked night bar (various spirits, wine, champagne, soft drinks, water etc). i was very happy to note that the prices for anything from this night bar was the same as you would pay in the bar - so many hotels feel the need to rip people off in the night bar but harvey's most certainly did not. unfortunatelly we could not partake of this - early call in the morning!
fabulous views over the lake and surrounding countryside.
everything - sheets, towels, rooms, bathroom, all public areas (including loos) absolutely pristine.
dinner: the dining room was large and buzzing when we finished our pre-dinner drinks in the adjoining bar. warm and comfortable with crisp napkins and table cloths. once again, everything clean and shining.
the meal is an all inclusive 4 course meal (€50 pp but ours was included in the dbb option we had booked under).
first up you are served an amuse bouche or chef's favour - a little hint of what is to come. we were served the cutest little mini caeser salad on the tinienst of glass plates. a great forerunner for what was to come.
- pate de fois gras
- confit of duck
both were delicious and glad to see it really WAS confit.
- black sole on the bone
- fillets of monkfish
accompanied with a selection of perfectly cooked veg and mashed potatoes.
once again, delicious.
next course was a choice of homemade soup or a sorbet.
we chose the homemade mushroom soup. perfect.
good selection of homemade desserts but we opted for the cheeseboard (for one though there was plenty on it for the two of us). selection of about 5 cheeses and delicate little homemade wheaten crackers. tea and coffee also served at this point.
the wine list was well chosen and the usual mark up and not at all excessively priced, plus there was a fair selection of half bottles. good selection of about 6 champagnes raning in price from €58-€145 which was once again a fair and not excessive mark up. as it was my birthday we ordered one and it was served professionally and perfectly chilled.
the meal, the wine and champagne were all perfect and the service was friendly, helpfully and genuinely nice.
the bar: open fire, plenty of friendly staff and well stocked bar. normal prices not hiked up.
served buffet style in the dining room which overlooks the lake. loads of cereals, juices, etc. on offer together with various hot plates holding: bacon, egg (fried and scrambled), sausages, tomatoes, mushrooms, hash browns, black and white pudding. you just help yourself to whatever you fancy. tea/coffee toast etc. brought to your table.
after breakfast we obtained some bread from the kitchens and fed the swans on the lake and enjoyed a while just standing on the banks in the peace that surrounds the place.
all the staff we encountered were perfectly nice and helpful. the atmosphere their friendliness creates makes this a very comfortable and welcoming hotel to visit.
i would very highly recommend this hotel. it really is excellent and what makes it all the better is that the people seem to really care what we, their customers think. definately a 10/10 hotel and very well worth a visit if you are in donegal.
We have just returned from a 2 day trip to Harveys Point and have to say we were very pleasantly pleased with the standard of accommodation. We had booked a premium suite in the new building and were reallly impressed with both it's tasteful decor and level of comfort. There is very little that they have not thought of in the rooms, from piped music in the massive modern bathrooms - lovely when you are lying in your jacuzzi - to separate hallways to diminish noise levels and a proper bar area for preparing drinks. The bedroom area was big enough to house of party of people and the proper king-size beds were very welcome!! (There are older chalet-style rooms on the grounds, but they didnt look too great!). The setting on the lake is magical and I can only imagine it's even nicer in the summer. The food in the restaurant was very good and at €50 for a five course dinner, was excellent value for money - though we did see some guests complaining about the service. Overall it was very welcoming and they have done an excellent job with their new renovation. Would definitely return again (and we are very fussy guests!).
Good Food/Setting - Awful Service!!!
We visited Harveys Point Hotel for Christmas Day and found it very disappointing. The food was beautiful as was the setting however it would have been nice if the service had even been average. We had to ask on 4 occasions to have the table cleared between courses; no staff came near us at all to find out if we were enjoying our meal or if we needed anything else; and as for the table decoration (or lack of it), there was one cracker and nothing else!!! When paying, we were greeted with "What table were you at?" with no mention of either please/thank you/did you have a nice day?. Honestly, this was an extremely disappointing visit and one that our family will not be repeating.
A little peice of heaven
stayed in harveys point in september this year had to say it was the most relaxing,homely and beautiful location i have ever been in if you want to unwind this is the place to be
Correction misunderstanding for "You Gotta Be Kidding"
I would like to clarify something that a guest wrote earlier under the title "you gotta be kidding"
Most credit card receipts in Ireland in the hotel / restaurant business contain a line where patrons can add a gratuity for their bill but if you tip at your table or in your room you are not expected to tip again. In any event this is NEVER expected by the front desk staff at any hotel and CERTAINLY NOT at Harvey's Point where the staff are second to none and discretion and courtesy are paramount in the manner in which the staff treat their guests.
As a resident of Donegal Town I am very proud to have Harvey's Point on my doorstep. I recognise the great effort that has gone into making the Hotel such a wonderful place and I am disappointed that a misunderstanding could have resulted in a negative comment. I would be grateful if you would publish this clarification as it does a disservice to a true jewel in the crown of Donegal tourism.
Couldn't have been better!
I have travelled all over the world and have never experienced such a welcoming and luxurious hotel. Myself and my husband stayed in one of the hotel's newly built executive suites and I have to say it was the most relaxing time I have spent anywhere in a long time, from our room the lake views were set off by a mountainous backdrops and beautiful forest ranges were exhilarating, our huge four post bed to the whirlpool Jacuzzi. A unique place that I have yet to see replicated.
We ate at the hotel's Gourmet Restaurant and were greeted by friendly staff who were efficient and respectful to say the least. The food was delicious and you could tell the emphasis was on quality and freshness of the food. The second night we stayed we attended the Hotels Dinner Cabaret, The food was exquisite and the entertainment second to none, our time spent there was heavenly, Looking forward to going back next year already. It was worth every penny!
You have got to be kidding?
This is a beautiful spot! What we drove all the way to Donegal for. The price we payed was very expensive for the one night but we decided to splurge in this case. The breakfast was the best we had in our two weeks in Ireland and the view while enjoying it was also not to be missed! What really ticked me off was while signing our bill at check out there is room for a gratuity at the bottom of the credit card print out slip? We left the waitress a tip and the maid a tip but in all my years of traveling I have never tipped (or will I ever) the front desk clerk at check out... for what, running my credit card payment? Then to top it all off upon leaving I asked some info about the area and boy was the clerk rude (cause I didn't tip her) too bad!
Tiniest Double bed in Ireland
We luckily only stayed one night in this "hotel", I use the inverted commas as the level of accommodation we enjoyed was the worst I've come across in Ireland.
Our room was in an annexe aspirationally named "The Gate Lodge", what we found did not exactly match the image that the name had conjured up. In fact it's a very ordinary bungalow divided up into the kind of poky rooms that reminded me of student accommodation of old. The shortest, narrowest double bed I've ever seen was built into the wall on one side, so my boyfriend had to sleep wedged in, while I slept half-hanging out of the bed trying to make as much room for him as possible. There were no lockers, just a minuscule shelf on my side of the bed and a pair of glaring lamps right over the bed. The sheets felt clammy, possibly because they were made of some kind of synthetic material, also there was no top sheet to go between us and the yucky quilt cover, which had seen better days. The ensuite bathroom had not been cleaned properly, there was quite a bit of hair on the floor and lumps of black stuff stuck to the shower curtain. The TV had only 2 or 3 channels that were watchable, the rest was grey fuzz. And there was no minibar, even though they state on their website that each room has a minibar.
Within a few minutes we decided to ask the receptionist if they had any rooms available back in the main building, at any rate. Unfortunately there was nothing. Had we not been there for a wedding we would most definitely have left. Perhaps they had cynically put all the wedding guests in the Gate Lodge for that very reason.
Breakfast the next morning was the nail in the coffin. Harvey's Point is the only place in Ireland that I know of where breakfast does not mean Irish Breakfast. Maybe this is because we were in the "Gate Lodge". After a few minutes having received our tea and toast we realised that we would not be getting any bacon or sausages. I wondered whether or not we could have had an Irish breakfast back in the main hotel. Nobody had bothered to tell us in any case.
Nice place to stay
A quiet pleasure
If you want to get away and have time to hear yourself think, this is a perfect place. Our room faced the lake and was a short walk from the main building. The food was above average. This is a popular place for weddings, so parking can be a problem. We would stay again.