Dean Hotel, Dublin

Without the Dean Hotel our Dublin trip would not have been quite so amazing, I think. Firstly the hotel location is absolutely fantastic. You're not right smack in the bustle that is Grafton street, which is a 5-10 min walk away. All the pubs and restaurants you'd want to visit are in the street behind the hotel, which you can access in a shortcut (left on Camden Plc). Walk down Wexford street and Aungier streets and you'd hit an area that's much better than Temple Bar - all the best foods and pubs just 10 mins from the hotel. The girl who checked us in was the friendliest and who gave us wonderful tips for walking around town, recommending great places to eat, bars to check out and even a lovely little bookstore that we didn't get to visit in the end.

The hotel itself was a design lover's (or hipster's) heaven. The entrance opens right into a bar where the reception area is off to one corner. It's very trendy and comfortable. 

The room - WOW. We've stayed in luxury hotels before but this felt like home and not just another hotel room. I loved the moody walls and edgy artwork, the furniture and trend-worthy accessories like an orange Smeg fridge and working vinyl record player. Even their snack bar wasn't cringe worthy; they sold a baby bottle of Hendricks Gin and phone charging cords. What a cheap thrill for me, this was as technologically forward a hotel has ever been that I've seen so far. 

The only downside for some would be that the room was right next to a club which was open all the way up to 2am. Without asking the hotel provides ear plugs automatically in each room, but if you're a very light sleeper you could check in with the hotel to be moved to a quieter room or floor. Stayed there three nights and it was never a problem for me, never used those ear plugs. Spent quite a bit of time peeking out to see the action next door but unfortunately we stayed during the weekday so we never got any more than the beat thumping action. 

They have a wonderful rooftop restaurant, Sophie's, where we enjoyed a full Irish breakfast. We brought our laptops up in the morning, had our coffees and enjoyed a blissful quiet start to the day. Didn't get to enjoy dinner here but the city views here are absolutely gorgeous. It'd make for a lovely evening night out on their outdoor terrace.

The next very best thing about the location is you can take the Airport Express 747 bus directly to and from the airport. The bus stop to the airport is 5 minutes away from the hotel around a corner. At €12 for a return ticket, it's the best value for getting to the hotel directly from the airport. The bus runs every 15 or 20 minutes daily till around midnight. The ride was about 50 minutes which we didn't quite feel since we got to see parts of the city we'd never walk to. It's also such a breeze since it wasn't crowded and the bus was adequately spacious for both commuter and luggage. 

Shawn and I aren't very picky about staying in luxuriously awesome hotels. We gravitate towards location, comfort and deals. Sometimes that means chain hotels or an Airbnb if we were curious about local living in a specific city. Now and then we splurge on unique accommodation (we stayed in a refurbished prison in New Zealand) and it's so wonderful when they exceed our expectations.

The Dean Hotel Dublin

33 Harcourt St, Saint Kevin's, Dublin 2, Ireland
Phone: +353 1 607 8110
www.deandublin.ie/