Royal Marine Hotel
Travel Blogs from Dún Laoghaire
Breakfast/Luggage out at 6:30 AM
Depart at 7 AM to Dublin airport
O'Conner Transport picked us up at the hotel and dropped us at Delta.
Check in and through security/customs to Gate 40
Somehow we missed the VAT tax desk!
While boarding our plane, we realized that we were upgraded to First Class!
... normal levels!! The amount of stress that went away had a real impact on my whole attitude being out here. Before, and as you probably read in the last blog, I was quite down about being in so many classes again just like Gettysburg. Once I realized that I was going to too many and then confirmed it with the registrar, it was like a huge weight being lifted off my shoulders! I had my first project due this week, yesterday (Monday) in fact. It was a group ...
... We went to the post office which turned out to be nothing but the guard suggested a restaurant called The Church that was really good, along with my Irish coffee. We headed for dessert at a shop we passed ... Gelato. Yum. In the rain, we walked back to a dart train that was closed :( we decided to try the taxi. Wow, that was an experience. Kind of fast with darting in and out of traffic. Whew, nice to be home! I needed some time to journal. Tomorrow we get a car. Bye for now ...
Dublin! Spent the weekend with the incredible Kyly Whitfield in Ireland. Flew over and met her outside of Dublin. Saturday morning we rented a car and drove (on the other side of the road) to Cork to see the Blarney Stone and castle. We stopped in Kilkenny on the way down for breakfast. On our drive through the heart of Ireland we were fortunate enough to have sunny, warm skies which made the beautiful hilly countryside explode with every shade of green. (End lame ...
Two days ago I just realized how lucky I was to be in Ireland for the Saint Patrick's Day, so I told myself I had NO other option than going to Dublin city to see the parade and the other celebrations. I had decided to go there even if I was alone, to enjoy a pint of Guinness and take some photos. Let me tell you how things didn’t go how I expected ...
How has this hotel rated in the past?
Historical Traveler Reviews Royal Marine Hotel Dún Laoghaire
Was good for price
I booked this hotel through a deal with Expedia. What appealed was the area and the fact the hotel was new. Neither disappointed me however there were a few things that weren't expected that did happen....
The staff are friendly and do try to help you however are untrained and as a result, really have no idea about customer service. ie, it took 2 days for them to fix our bar fridge despite numerous requests.
The Restaurant Dun - AVOID THIS!!!! We had lunch there the first day we arrived. We ordered a bottle of verve (which was served to us warm) and took 2 waiters and the manager to open it, the food was fairly good except the minestrone soup (I've had better out of a tin). The restaurant staff aren't the brightest crayons in the box, can barely speak english and are not customer focused. Reception told us that the restaurant served room service up until 9pm so on my husband's birthday, we decided to go back to the hotel and have dessert back in our room. When we got to the restaurant the maitrade' told us that they don't serve room service in the evenings and when I explained that reception had told us otherwise, she made no attempt to rectify the situation. Instead we had to wait in the restaurant for 10mins for the 2 desserts and take them up to our room ourselves despite the fact the restaurant had only 2 tables and more than enough staff to carry a tray up to a room....
The rooms are really nice besides the shower - it hardly works despite the fact you have a hand held and a shower head, the pressure and the temperature change all the time for no apparent reason. The walls are paper thin to the point that you can hear EVERYTHING and feel EVERYTHING if the beds happen to be back to back on the same wall... unfortunately for us, our room had this and the people next door were quite active - so I guess you could call it 'in-room entertainment'. On the positive - the beds are extremely comfortable and the fit outs are all brand new.
Noise level was really bad for us. The first morning we woke up to a crane smack bang outside our room and men going up and down in a cage peering into our room. The crane was there only for one day but at the moment there is alot of construction going on be aware of that. Also, there was a festival at the time that we stayed there so for 2 nights of our stay, we had huge crowds of people drinking outside the hotel and our room until 2-3am in the morning and it was really loud (the windows are not double glazed) Management made no effort to let guests know this would be the case.
There was only one gentleman staff member who seemed to have ever worked in a five star hotel before. He showed us to our room the first day (because reception couldn't get a key to work for us) and he was extremely professional. I saw him taking up bags another day so if he is the porter - he should be the manager! I do wish I knew his name as I would like to mention him alas, I didn't get it.
The gym and spa wasn't open at the time which was disappointing - they advertise the spa doesn't open til October but there was no mention that the gym wouldn't be operational. When I asked about the gym - the receptionist was quite rude about it.
So all in all - I know it seems like there are alot of negatives but they're the things you tend to remember when staying in a hotel. I feel for the rate that we paid (about 80euros p.night), we got good value for money. It is a shame it was still being built but I'd say once they build the hotel and train their staff properly - this hotel will be fantastic. Would I go back - Yes - I would in about a year when the teething problems are over and it's not like faulty towers however I would expect to pay alot more.
Teething Problems, But Could Be Great
The Royal Marine hotel itself is an impressive building, situated a very short walk from the train service. and a few yards from the main street in Dun Laoghaire, which is just seven miles from Dublin.
It has undergone major refurbishment since I last stayed there in 1987, and the rooms are both large, and well-furnished, with big flat-screen televisions, personal safes, large bathrooms (although lacking baths), and all the usual acoutrements of gracious living.
Views from the front rooms depend on high up you are. On the lower levels, you see little but building work - on the top levels, you can see the bay. On the rear, where I was, I could see a flat roof!
The reception area is impressive, with a fine lounge, and a large well-stocked bar.
The staff, predominantly foreign, are superb. They are polite, well-trained, and willing to please, and the "greeter" who met us on each occasion we came or went, was a charming gentleman, who will, I am sure, some day run his own hotel.
As the Marine has only re-opened in recent times, one has to allow for teething problems, mainly in the area of communications and servicer, but given the prices, these problems would need to be ironed out sooner rather than later.
Just three examples taken from my three days there, may help explain my point.
(1) I booked a Royal Marine Hotel package for a three night stay, including dinner on one night, to celebrate a wedding anniversary. On booking, I explained that we were celebrating our anniversary and wished to take dinner in the hotel on the evening of the 12th August (our anniversary), and that if this could be confirmed, I would then be able to book two other restaurants in Dublin for Friday and Saturday evenings, for which I could get theatre tickets for the Abbey and the Gate.
The receptionist congratulated me on the anniversary, told me how beautiful the restaurant was, and assured me that the booking would be taken care of. Subsequently, the hotel emailed me to confirm the restaurant booking.
A few days before arrival, the hotel emailed me again, this time to say that the advertised Leisure Centre would not in fact be available during our stay.
On checking in, I asked if I could change the time of our anniversary dinner from 8pm to 7.30pm, and it was then that my problems commenced.
At first, no record of any dinner booking could be found.
When I showed the confirmatory email, a somewhat embarrassed receptionist disappeared, returning a few minutes later to tell me that the restaurant did not in fact open on Sunday evenings, but that after consultation, "they" (who never actually appeared) would be prepared to serve us dinner in the main bar!
I asked to see the bar (it is nice, but not exactly where you would choose to dine on a special occasion), and so I suggested a compromise.
I already had 5.30pm dinner bookings in Dublin on Friday and Saturday, followed by 8pm theatre bookings, so if they could serve a 5.30 dinner on either night, I might be able to switch one of my dinner bookings on to our anniversary night.
However, it now transpired that their restaurant never opened prior to 7pm anyway, so the receptionist suggested that a manager from reservations would phone me.
Given that my only problem was the anniversary dinner, I was slightly surprised that the charming lady who phoned (and who cheerfully admitted that they had goofed), simply offered to upgrade the room, which given that I had already unpacked and was by now running late, seemed somewhat disconnected from my immediate problem.
In any event, I phoned around my own list of restaurants, and got a reservation for Sunday night in an excellent Dun Laoghaire restaurant named La Toscana. In the end, we took lunch instead of dinner in the Royal Marine restaurant, and that was very good quality.
However, it was a pity that a problem created by the hotel, had to be solved by the guest.
(2) Breakfast was somewhat chaotic on the first two mornings.
It is self-service, so that all the staff has to do is provide tea/coffee, and toast, and so I ordered coffee as I sat down, at 9.30.
And again at 9.45.
And again at 10.05.
By then, I had finished the cooked breakfast.
By the third morning, things had improved. More staff seemed to be on duty, and apart from the fact that the only eggs available were of the scrambled variety (not everybody's choice, particularly three mornings in a row), the breakfast was generally good.
(3) On leaving, I did something I rarely if ever do. I left my phone charger in the room after me. I realised this within 30 minutes or so and phoned the Marine, to be told that there was nobody available to go to the room to retrieve it, nor was there anybody in Lost Poperty to take the details. It took another six phone calls over two days, before somebody finally located it. During that time, three different people promised to return my calls, but nobody ever did.
Not the best anniversary we have ever had (nor the worst either), and what the heck is another anniversary anyway!
We, too,suffered persistent noise in this hotel. Two or three pressure release valves (probably linked to the hotel´s heating system) stuck out of the ground very near our ground floor window, causing vibration and and even releasing some steam vapor into our room. The noise diminished but did not disappear when we closed the window. When my partner notified the reception we were offered a room change, which we were too tired to take up as it was already late at night. The following morning, the noise from the valves had stopped, but a few feet away on the same building an even louder air extraction vent went into operation which forced us to keep the window shut. When we contacted the reception again, they told us that several guests had already complained about this in the past - which made us wonder why they hadn't done anything about it! The staff was polite but to us seemed untrained and not very knowledgeable about what they were doing. I can't comment on any of the leisure facilities because none were open. Other than breakfast we ate no meal in the hotel, as their menu looks (even by expensive Irish standards) very pricey. In sum, the noise made this a pretty awful experience; but even without, it would still not have been great value for money and not really much of a four-star ex-perience.
brought some friends for dinner to this hotel
the duns restaurant.the staff and food was certainly not up to a four star standard.only four starters and four main courses to choose from,the staff were young and completely untrained,main courses arriving before the starters ,food you could not eat.we then went into the cocktail bar were the barman tried to overcharge us for our drinks ,when i mentioned the overcharge to him his only answer was the till often does this??
we will not be back.
Don't expect to see any Irish staff
Lovely building. Nice rooms. I was disappointed as I was looking to stay at an Irish hotel and paid handsomely for that. I only came across one Irish voice the whole stay. If your coming to Dublin for a bit of 'craic' go some place else.The hotel is trying to run on cheap eastern european labour and although they tried to create an ambience it just didn't work. The food was disappointing for the cost and breakfast/dinner didn't cater at all for vegetarians-in fact the waitress had to check with somebody the meaning of the word. The chef did seemed to be trying as he produced a cheese board on request after dinner that was not on the menu (unbelievably!!)and mushrooms at breakfast time even though again the waitress didn't understand the word and were not on the menu. Overall the bulding was good but the stay was spoilt by not being an Irish experience--after all that's why I chose Dublin. I could have been in a hotel in Krakow for the week. Never mind I will try somewhere else next time. Owners---You will lose business if you carry on this way. It could be a great stay. To cap it all the Polish receptionist tried to overcharge me by 100 euros as he was not aware of all the rates available. Mmmmm.
Stayed here after a big family party in the same area. Fabulous hotel. Entrance is really impressive. Staff was very friendly and professional. The rooms were very nice. We were upgraded (for no apparent reason) to a suite on the 6th floor which had fantastic sea views. The bars in the hotel were really nice and again the staff was excellent. It is right beside a DART (inter-city train) station and close to all amenities in Dun Laoghaire village. There is a lovely pier walk across the road also. We are a professional couple in our mid to late 30s and many of our friends and family stayed on the same night. All had a good experience. The breakfast room was nice and the fresh fruit and cereals were good. The full Irish could do with a spruce up - that was our only gripe! Would highly recommend a visit.
Would have given 5 out of 5 only it is slightly unfinished at the moment in that room service has not started, so not up to full swing. Would consider it 5 out of 5 when complete.
Thank you for your positive feedback.
We have past your comments onto the team at the Royal Marine Hotel.
We look forward to welcoming you back to the Hotel in the near future.
Royal Marine Management Team
First of all, let me preface my review with the fact that I did not stay at the hotel but only dined at Dun's restaurant . However I strongly feel that my comments are of use to anyone who is contemplating staying at the newly refurbished hotel.
I also want to say that despite advice not to go to the hotel , I decided to give it a chance as I have fond memories of the original hotel before the recent refurbishment.
Unfortunately, despite all my goodwill, the first impression of the hotel is very bleak - a grand empty entrance but with no atmosphere and devoid of any sign of life!
Our experience at the restaurant was a complete disaster - a well presented room but very few diners and poor ambience. Our main course was dreadful, which was both cold and miniscule! However, despite this we were determined not to let this ruin our night and put this down to bad luck until the staff started preparing for breakfast at 9pm (!) and began clearing all the other tables of glasses.
Being the optimists, we decided not to let this ruin our night and decided not to have desert but go to the bar instead. However this was not to be as we found the bar locked shut at 9:30pm!
I passed on my comments to the Duty Manager who did seem genuinely concerned with my feedback but for any other potential patrons I would not waste my time waiting for the hotel to get its act together! Especially as our meal for 4 cost over 400 Euros!
Thank you for your review dated the 13th of August.
I am extremely disappointed that you did not enjoy your experience in Dún Bistro. As the hotel is newly reopened all comments are welcomed and customer feedback is extremely important to us.
I apologize for our shortcomings and I have forwarded your review onto the management team so we can use your experience in the ongoing training of our team members.
Thank you for taking the time to write your review as it is only through our customer feedback that we can improve upon our services.
Royal Marine Management Team
Friendly but noisy and still on a construction site
When we stayed there it had just opened after renovation, so many of the facilities (pool, gym) did not yet exist and the "garden" was still a dusty construction site. Staff was friendly and the food was good (but a little overpriced - there are many cheaper restaurants nearby). Avoid staying in the Hague Terrace wing of the hotel; right outside our window was an extremely noisy airconditioning unit (or something like that) that went on all day, making it impossible to leave the window open. The rooms are nicely furnished with flat screen televisions but not overly large.