Dublin receives numerous tourists each year that spend their days exploring historical sites and renowned museums, and their nights enjoying a pint of Guinness at one of the hundreds of lively pubs. The fun and cheerful city is an excellent starting off point for exploring Ireland, packed with history and a unique culture. We visited Ireland’s capital to check out their top hotels and see how they stacked up against the competition. So if you’re heading to Dublin and want a unique stay, you’ve come to the right place. Take a look at the best boutique hotels in Dublin, and get inspired!
When it comes to B&Bs with a homey feel and a personal touch, Beech Lodge is hard to beat. The owners really give guests a warm welcome and make a point of helping out with any aspect of their stay. Rooms are clean, fresh, and comfortable, though you'll hear some traffic noise in those at the front of the house. Breakfast is a particular highlight -- it's freshly cooked with lots of choice. Rates are very reasonable, and if you don't mind being a few miles from city center, this is a great choice.
Little effort has been spared in recreating an authentic Victorian experience in this quaint Ballsbridge hotel -- from handpicked antiques to meticulously maintained original features, you really get a sense of stepping into the 19th century. Rooms continue the theme, though some can appear a little dated, while the hotel's traditional afternoon tea is a real treat. Location is key -- it's perfect for the Aviva Stadium, and Dublin city center is about 20 minutes away on foot (transport links are also good).
The Butlers Town House Hotel is a four-pearl, traditionally decorated, 20-room guest house that's within a three-minute walk of Lansdowne Road Dart Station, and within a 15-minute walk of several Grand Canal Quay waterfront restaurants. Guest rooms, with two-fold Egyptian cotton sheets and handmade pillows, are lush and immaculate, and their posh upholstered armchairs and decorative fireplaces, capture the ambience of the Victorian era. Bathrooms, which have French doors, are pristine with modern fixtures, but run a bit small. Wi-Fi, a shoe-shine service, and 24-hour tea-and-coffee service are available free to all guests. A gourmet Irish breakfast is included in the "Bed & Breakfast" rate. The Drawing Room offers free scones, muffins, and juice in the afternoon.
The Beacon Hotel is a trendy 88-room boutique that is a breath of hip, fresh air in the Dublin hotel scene. All-white rooms have fun design features including pops of color, bamboo shoots, and ornate headboards. Bathrooms are equally chic with modern fixtures, gray tiles, and walk-in showers; some rooms have sexy freestanding soaking tubs in front of floor-to-ceiling windows. The location is far from Dublin's tourist spots -- but close the tram (LUAS) for reaching the city center -- and parking is free. Hotel features include the Crystal Bar for cocktails, My Thai restaurant, a beer garden, and free Wi-Fi.
The Aberdeen Lodge is a charming mid-range hotel with bay windows and climbing ivy, surrounded by brick walls. This small guesthouse is located near Dublin Bay and the exclusive Ballsbridge neighborhood. Rooms are quaint and classic -- some have four-poster beds -- and all have free Wi-Fi. Bathrooms are average size, but clean and updated. This lodge has lovely common spaces including a drawing room with a fireplace and manicured outdoor garden. One hotel highlight is the extensive daily breakfast, with items such as house-made preserves, bread, and pastries. While located away from the center of Dublin in a leafy, residential neighborhood, the DART train is nearby for easy access to the main sights.
The 21-room boutique-style hotel called Number 31 was once the home of Sam Stephenson, Dublin’s famous modernist architect. With an elegant, contemporary design theme and a cozy, welcoming vibe, this property is a favorite for guests who want to stay close to the shopping and dining district in the city center. Period-style rooms are upscale and feature original Georgian details like lofty ceilings and cornices. Guests rave about the cooked-to-order breakfast spread and personalized service.
Set in a a Victorian town house in fashionable Ballsbridge with homey chintz, brass chandeliers, stained glass, and free bottomless hot beverages served all day, the 20-room Roxford Lodge Hotel at first might seem more posh B&B than mid-range boutique hotel. It goes all out with in-room amenities, however, which include free Wi-Fi and huge flat-screen TVs with DVD libraries, and separate taps for drinking water; most rooms also come with infra-red saunas and jetted tubs -- the Executive Suite, with a kitchen, bar area, and large sauna, is particularly special. The residential location offers quiet and easy access to Dublin center but without the hubbub.
The Dylan Hotel is a stylish 44-room boutique with a quiet and safe location in Dublin 4, an upscale neighborhood a short walk from the city center. Each room has been individually styled with a mix of whimsical decor -- artistic headboards, intricate mirrors, and statement chairs -- and classic pieces. Amenities are fantastic for such a small property. In the room, there are flat-screen TVs, iPod docks (with iPods loaded with historical Dublin walking tours), stocked minibars, and bathrooms with underfloor heating. Some bathrooms also have big, luxurious soaking tubs with small flat-screen TVs. Amenities in the hotel include a fitness room, cozy bar, heated outdoor terrace, solid restaurant, and 24-hour room service. In addition to its character and sleek style, the Dylan is known for excellent service.
The Schoolhouse is a charming, historic hotel located in the leafy Ballsbridge neighborhood. The building housed a school from 1859 through 1969, and underwent a restoration in 1997 that preserved its historic character. The result is a traditional, cozy boutique hotel unlike any other in Dublin. All rooms are named after a famous Irish writer and have classic decor including floral prints and antiques. Rooms do have modern touches as well, including flat-screen TVs, free Wi-Fi, and fluffy duvets. Bathrooms have historic charm, but are a little snug. The architecture of the hotel is most striking in Olivier's Restaurant and the Schoolhouse Bar, which share a beamed cathedral ceiling. The vibrant neighborhood bar has a fireplace, outdoor seating, and screens to show all the big sports matches. The quiet location, excellent food, and history of this hotel make it one of Dublin's best affordable picks.