What makes a great trip even better? An amazing hotel that's what.
When the idea of visiting Dublin first crossed my mind I knew that I wanted to stay in The Dean. I'd stumbled across the hotel via one of my favourite bloggers (Audrey Leighton) and I fell in love straight away.
As a student it was all about getting the cheapest and most basic hotel possible. That tends to result in you needing to buy flip flops so you can stand in the shower and keeping the anti bacterial wipes close to hand. Now that I'm a 'functioning' adult with an annual salary I like to keep things a little more classy and comfortable than a shared hostel room in Toronto with a lady called Judith who was attempting to elude American boarder guards (it's a long long story).
My basic requirements for a good hotel are: a comfy bed with crisp clean sheets and a spotless bathroom. Everything else is a wonderful bonus.
The Dean knew it was my birthday so went above the call of duty to make my day special. One of their amazing desserts was waiting for me when we got the keys to our room along with a lovely little note. In the evening went had dinner at Sophie's where my dessert was presented with a birthday candle. Ten out of ten for effort!
Regarding Sophie's, we also ended up having breakfast there on two occasions and drinks on the Sunday before our flights. So safe to say we really enjoyed it there. The restaurant is helped by having a beautiful view of Dublin and a roof top terrace. I'm not sure how often you can make use of the terrace with the Irish weather (everything you've heard about that is true) but it's great to have that option.
Food aside, the rooms were great. You can tell a lot of thought has gone into the design. The beds were comfortable and the bathroom was probably one of the nicest hotel bathrooms I've ever had the privilege of using.
Everything in the rooms was for sale if anything in particular caught your eye. There are also lots of little extras that make your stay even more comfortable and entertaining. The nespresso machine helped us on our first morning and the marshall amp and vinyl player helped keep our mood high after long days walking across Dublin.
In the evening the downstairs turns into a popular bar with a resident DJ. It was fun to sit downstairs with a glass of Malbec and people watch. It's always reassuring when the locals show up because it must mean you've chosen well.
The Dean is conveniently located near to lots of clubs and interesting restaurants. If Sophie's doesn't interest you make sure you check out Bunsen which is just five minutes from the hotel. In terms of bars if you're into craft beer head to Against The Grain. The wonderful bar tender who served us doesn't have anything at all to do with that recombination... Much.
Thanks for the wonderful Irish hospitality guys. Next time I'm in Dublin this place will be my home again.