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Fitzpatrick Castle Hotel Dublin 4.0

Killiney, Ireland

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Review Summary

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Pros

  • Country-meets-city location on a parklike hilltop
  • Elegant rooms with modern bathrooms; some with balconies and sea views 
  • Two restaurants use local produce for Irish breakfast and more
  • Afternoon tea and cocktails served fireside in The Library Bar
  • Health club with 20-meter indoor pool, sauna, and steam room
  • Fitness classes including yoga, Pilates, and water aerobics
  • Spa treatments available 
  • 24-hour room service
  • Free Wi-Fi
  • Free parking
  • Non-smoking property (a con for some)

Cons

  • Far from Dublin center -- up to an hour by train
  • Some datedness issues in rooms
  • Breakfast is not included in room rates

Bottom Line

The 113-room, upscale Fitzpatrick Castle Hotel Dublin is an 18th-century castle that sits one of the highest points in the area, overlooking Dublin Bay. The hotel has two restaurants, a bar where guests can have cocktails or afternoon tea by the fireplace, as well as an indoor pool, a spa, and a proper gym. Guest rooms vary in size, but all are furnished with antiques and have modern bathrooms. The property is a 30-minute drive or an hour by train from the center of Dublin and its tourist attractions, though may be a good option for travelers seeking a mix of city and countryside for their Ireland stay. 

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Scene

A former castle, now a local landmark filled with antiques and quirky decor

The Fitzpatrick Castle Hotel Dublin was built in 1740 and was a bona fide castle until the 1970s, when it became a hotel. Its bucolic hilltop views betray a complicated political past: it was used by the IRA during the civil war and burnt by Free State Troops. The hotel has been owned and operated by the same family for two generations, is popular with families, and is an important local landmark; weddings, christenings, and other celebrations are frequently held here. Local children take swimming lessons in the indoor pool, which is stylish in a retro way, with columns, mosaics, and murals on the walls. There are interesting antiques throughout the hotel, from elaborate settees to quirky lamps; occasionally there's a mirrored column that feels like it was left behind by the 1980s, but the stone fireplaces and rough walls are charming and filled with character. PJ’s, the more formal of the hotel's two restaurants, serves breakfast and lunch in an old-fashioned dining room decorated with patterned upholstery, wallpaper, and wall-to-wall carpeting. The Grill is more modern, still with patterned wallpaper, but with pops of color, and furnished with stylish wingback chairs and fancy sofas. The Library Bar has rough brick walls, heavy red-leather couches, and stone floors that may have been there for centuries. The piped-in music in the hotel’s common areas can be a little jarring, especially the '80’s rock-and-roll in the restaurant. The Fitzpatrick is definitely fun and quirky, if not contemporary and luxurious, but for a few days' stay in an honest-to-goodness castle, it fits the bill.

Location

Overlooking Dublin Bay, a 30-minute drive from the city 

The Fitzpatrick Castle Hotel Dublin is located on a steep hill overlooking Dublin Bay, along a quiet country road that can be difficult to find for those not familiar with the area. The immediate neighborhood is quiet and residential, with no shops, restaurants, or pubs within walking distance. Killiney Hill Park, a large and lush park with views over the Irish Sea, is just across the road. The nearby village of Dalkey offers plenty of opportunities for shopping, dining, and enjoying a pint. Dalkey Castle and Heritage Center, also in Dalkey, is a 15-minute walk or few minutes' drive for travelers interested in local history. The James Joyce Tower and Museum in Sandycove is under two miles from the hotel, and Killiney Golf Club is a five-minute drive. The Dalkey DART (mass transit) station is within a 20-minute walk of the Fitzpatrick for those who don't mind the exercise. From there, it's a 45-minute to one-hour train or tram ride to Dublin. Note that the walk to the DART is downhill, but the climb back up is steep and strenuous, and many guests opt for a taxi home. The hotel has its own Aircoach stop, making trips to Dublin Airport in one hour. Taxis and cars can make the trip in about 45 minutes. 

Rooms

A mix of antique elegance and outdated accents

Rooms at the Fitzpatrick Castle Hotel Dublin vary in size; Double and Twin rooms are on the small side, while suites are quite spacious. Classic Sea View rooms have private balconies with nice views of the bay. Decor is generally elegant, with antique furniture, upholstered headboards, carpeting, and heavy curtains. The wallpaper is period-appropriate, mostly striped or damask-patterned, and the palette is largely light and dark gray with touches of pale gold, beige, and light red. Some of the furniture in rooms is tried or worn, and outdated features like tube-style TVs are a disappointment -- guests should know that style is not uniform across all rooms. Bathrooms are small but modern, with shower/tub combos. The Royal Suite is fun, with clever bird cage wallpaper, canopy beds, a fireplace, and separate shower and tub in the bathroom. Amenities include satellite TV with pay movies, electric kettles, hairdryers, laptop safes, and free toiletries, but there are no mini-fridges. Connecting rooms are available upon request.

Features

Excellent health and wellness facilities and two restaurants

The Fitzpatrick Castle Hotel Dublin has a popular restaurant, PJ's, serving breakfast and lunch, including a full, traditional Irish breakfast spread (not included), as well as Sunday brunch. During July and August, PJ's serves dinner; reservations are required. The Grill at the Castle is located in the hotel's former dungeon; the menu uses fresh, local produce. Drinks and dinner are served by the fireplace in a contemporary dining room that incorporates some of the building's original architectural elements. The Library Bar serves cocktails and high tea. There's a hotel spa with a full menu of treatments that include aromatherapy, wraps and scrubs, facials, and massages; hair styling and beauty treatments are offered in the salon. The fitness center is actually a full-size gym, with a large number of cardio machines and weight equipment, and flat-screen TVs on the wall. The gym offers fitness classes, including yoga, Pilates, water aerobics, and an outdoor running club. There's a 20-meter indoor pool, hot tub, sauna, and steam room. Conference rooms, a business center, and wedding and event planning services are offered. Finally, the Fitzpatrick has laundry facilities for guest use. There's also 24-hour room service and free Wi-Fi.

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Address

Killiney Hill Road, Killiney, Province of Leinster, Ireland

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