Friday, August 04, 2017

Our Family Stay At the d Hotel Drogheda, Co. Louth | Review ♥

Early this week we travelled the furthest we ever have in Ireland, driving the length of the Republic from Cork to Louth, to stay at the d Hotel, Drogheda and experience all that Ireland's Ancient East has to offer - as well as fitting in lots of family fun too at Tayto Park - entry to Tayto Park was included in our nights stay package.

The d Hotel is located at the end of a quay, overlooking the river in Drogheda. It's very central to Drogheda town centre and is within close driving distance to a lot of great attractions such as Newgrange, Funtasia and Tayto Park. I wouldn't say the hotel is in the prettiest of locations, but I think that's typical of urban hotels, but it's closeness to so many great attractions really does make it an ideal base for families wanting to explore the area.

Upon arrival we received a very warm welcome at reception and made our way to our room, which was situated on the 4th floor. Our room had a view of the river and some of the historic sites - such as Saint Laurence Gate, which was built in the 13th century.

Our room was a good size and easily had enough space for the four of us - Jacek and I in a double, Tyler in a single and Beau in a travel cot.

The room decor was quite basic, but it was comfortable and we all had a grand nights sleep there. The boys were happy with the selection of kids channels on the TV and I was glad that there was a table in our room so I could sit them down with some snacks after our long car journey. There's also tea and coffee making facilities in the wardrobe and a travel hairdryer.

The bathroom had a bath with a shower head also, plenty of towels for us and it also came equipped with little toiletries too, which is always a nice touch.

To be honest, I think it's what's outside the bedrooms is what is most appealing about the d Hotel. We were delighted that we were able to visit Newgrange (even if it was too busy to go in) and see it from afar, because it was so close to the hotel at only 7 miles away. We also visited the beautiful Beaulieu Gardens, which I highly recommend if you're in the area and these were only 10 minutes away from the hotel by car.

 Before dinner we checked out the hotel's games room and were pleased to see lots of things to keep the boys entertained. They fell in love with the Sesame Street car and had a good few goes on that without getting bored (€1 per ride) and they had great fun going into the mini circus tent and crawling through the tunnel.

 For older kids there's also a foosball table (I spotted an older boy and girl having a game whilst we were there) and a pool table. The room was clean and was an ideal space for my boys to play in. There was also a comfy couch for parents to sit on in there too.

The hotel has a restaurant, Il Ponte, where breakfast is served in the morning, as well as a bar, The Hops, which is where we decided to have dinner during our stay. Reservations have to be made for Il Ponte and being with two small boys, we just wanted to go with the flow and not have a set time for dinner.

The atmosphere in the bar was lovely. The decor is great in there and they were playing good music the whole time we were in there. It was all very laid back and chilled and was exactly what we needed after all our travelling.

We ordered drinks, a mojito and Slane whiskey and were happy out waiting for our food to be served. I have to say, service was a bit slow in the bar and I was glad that we had brought the tablet for the boys to watch, otherwise they would have gotten a bit fed up with the wait. We didn't order starters, just a main and dessert afterwards.

The boys had goujons and chips, but there were six different options on the kids menu, so plenty of choice was available.

Jacek had the sea bass and I had the chicken curry - which was absolutely delicious, honestly, I'd have another bowl now if I could!

I was also happy to see vanilla panna cotta on the dessert menu. It's my absolutely favourite so I just had to order it and this was absolutely delicious too.

The d Hotel offers a kids club in July and August from 6.30 to 9.30 for children 4 years and up and Tyler was dying to go having seen the door to the kids club on the same floor as the games room. We've never let him go to anything like that before and I was a bit reluctant to let him go off on his own, but I'm actually so glad we did because he had a fab time there.

They had a play kitchen in there so he was in his element. They also did crafts and he got his face painted - he came back with an elephant, which I think was a custom request from him, so fair play to the lady for doing it for him and so well too, he was absolutely delighted with it! We left him there for two hours but he would have easily have done the three and I think it's great that the kids club is held in the evening, giving parents a chance to spend some time together while the kids play. The kids club is €8 per child, with discounts for siblings.

Breakfast is served in the Il Ponte restaurant and is buffet style, which is always great when you're with kids as you can pick and mix what you're putting on their plates. There was hot food food, a choice of cereals, fruit and pastries on offer, as well as a range of juices. The breakfast was lovely and we were all filled up ready to get on with our day at Tayto Park after it.

We enjoyed our stay in the d Hotel. It gave us the opportunity to go to so many great places, we had a comfortable nights sleep, good food and the boys had a great time playing, with Tyler also loving the kids club, so it was a positive experience all round.

*We were guests of the d Hotel and our meals and drinks were complimentary, however, as always, all thoughts and opinions are 100% my own.

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