The Bonnington is a 4-star hotel situated just north of Dublin City centre and is a perfect location for relaxing after a day or night spent among the hustle and bustle of the city.

Photo credit: Mark Casserly

Getting there

The hotel is only around 15 minutes from the city centre and is also conveniently located on the route to Dublin Airport - perfect for guest travelling from Ireland or abroad.

There are excellent transport links available in and out of both the city centre and the airport with a wide variety of regular buses stopping only a couple of minutes away from the hotel.

Dublin Bus numbers 11,16, 31 and 41 provide the perfect way to get from the city centre to the hotel and are very convenient and budget-friendly at less than €3 per trip.

Photo credit: Mark Casserly

The stay

All bedrooms at the hotel have been recently refurbished, with classic, executive, and family rooms on offer.

For my visit, I stayed in one of the hotel's executive rooms which was lovely and neat, with a place for everything and everything in place.

The room featured individual climate control (heaven in a heat wave), a Respa orthopaedic bed, a 39-inch Smart TV (Netflix, Amazon Prime & YouTube are at your fingertips), a work desk with a very comfortable reclining chair and USB ports, a tea and coffee station, and complimentary Prija toiletries.

I found the ability to control the heating and air conditioning incredible given that I was staying during the recent hot weather. The bed was very comfortable and no doubt was a big help in me having a relaxing sleep.

The large amount of USB ports in the room would be ideal for large families with bags of devices, while the work desk and reclining chair would be great for anyone staying over for a work trip.

Photo credit: Mark Casserly


The meals

There are plenty of dining choices available at The Bonnington. The Croft Bar & Bistro is located beside reception with food served from midday. As well as the starters and main courses on offer, the sandwiches and wraps available made for a perfect lunch-time snack.

On the night I stayed in the hotel I dined in DXTR at McGettigan's. This is a nice chilled out setting that uses produce exclusively from local suppliers. Their aim is to provide excellence in, what they call, farm-to-fork dining.

The restaurant uses a Josper Grill which is an indoor barbecue oven that cooks a variety of meat and fish at over 500 degrees Celsius, thus sealing in all the flavour and moisture.

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I ordered the salt aged smoked beef burger which tasted delicious. The burger, which came in a brioche bun, was so rich in flavour and contained Dublin cheddar cheese, in-house smoked bacon, dill pickle, red onions, tomato, lettuce and DXTR's original sauce.

Along with the burger was a large serving of beautiful hand-cut fries. The potatoes used to make these fries are from The Seed Potato Company in Ballymun. The fries, which are made extra crispy by being deep fried twice in duck fat, are so flavourful that they taste just as nice on their own or when paired with the smokey tomato ketchup.

Other highlights on the menu include fish of the day (sourced locally from Dublin Bay & the North Atlantic using sustainable fishing methods), 14oz Dexter T-bone (which has been 28 days Himalayan Salt aged by Gahan Butchers and is Irish grass fed Donabate Dexter Beef) and the Wagyu Burger (which is supplies by Anne Cronin from Bantry in County Cork).

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I had my breakfast the following morning in the newly refurbished Broomfield Suite. There was a large selection of food on offer from gorgeous fresh fruit and pastries to everything needed for a classic full Irish breakfast. The food is served in a buffet style which allows guests to choose whatever they like as often as they like.

The hotel also has a charming tea room located just inside the front door which serves afternoon tea. A selection of sandwiches, miniature desserts and scones with cream and jam are included with Prosecco an optional extra for a special occasion.

This room looks stunning with its sophisticated décor, open fireplace and the beautifully designed tea cups and saucers.

The facilities

If you're looking to relax or keep fit during your stay, the B.Fit Fitness & Leisure Club offers a complete experience to both hotel guests and club members alike. This area takes up two floors and includes a recently upgraded gym with new equipment, an 18-metre pool, jacuzzi, sauna and steam room.

There are also designated hours set aside for children to use the swimming pool. I used the pool and jacuzzi during my stay and was very impressed with what was on offer, including the cleanliness of the changing rooms.

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Those in need of a treat can head to the Serenity Treatment Room, a spa with a wide range of treatments on offer from massages and facials to waxing and Hopi ear candling.

Kieran O'Reilly is the health club's onsite physiotherapist. He has worked with teams such as Dublin GAA and Ireland Cricket and is available by appointment in advance.

Overall

Despite being busy on the day I arrived, the staff I encountered at the hotel were incredibly friendly and welcoming. The restaurant served up some great food and I was delighted to see how committed the chefs were to local produce.

Guests will be guaranteed a good night's sleep following a relaxing trip to the leisure centre and the exceptionally comfortable beds. The rooms were also nice and quiet, blocking out any sound from inside or outside the hotel.

From my experience, I would recommend the hotel to solo travellers as well as couples and families as I had a very pleasant experience.

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The price

I was offered a stay at the hotel for purpose of review. Throughout August, prices for a classic double room, which includes bed and breakfast the following morning and use of the leisure centre, start from €208.10.

For more staycation inspiration, check out this review of a rustic retreat in Wicklow and this chaotically fun trip to Galway.

- Written by Mark Casserly