An elegant Dublin classic
In its relatively short life of 30-plus years, The Westbury has elevated itself beyond many hotels in the Irish capital. Hidden away off Grafton Street, straddling the city’s bustling shopping and creative quarters, the hotel its now as intrinsic a part of the Dublin experience as the Ha’penny Bridge.
Its recently face-lifted Gallery, where light fare and afternoon tea is served, is an art deco, marbled salon, with floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the street. The newly refurbished Sidecar bar crafts a mean martini, and in the summer, it flings its windows open, bringing the city inside.
Over at Wilde, its recently revamped restaurant, the vibe is distinctly 1930s French brasserie rather than Dublin diner, and is one of the most desirable foodie destinations in the city right now. While Balfes restaurant offers a buzzy cocktail-hour experience.
There are 205 rooms, including 27 suites, plus more than a few cut-above amenities, including luxury car and dry cleaning services, a currency exchange and valet parking.
The real edge The Westbury has over its counterparts is its collaborative spirit. The Dublin hotel incorporates the area’s boutiques and suppliers wherever possible, from the Appassionata floral arrangements in the lobby to the Loulerie Cocktail in Balfes (so called after a beloved nearby jewelry store). The Gallery frequently serves a themed afternoon tea that highlights the city’s most charming attributes and features. The best parts of the city are brought to life inside the hotel’s walls.
Our Inspector’s Highlights
• The guest relations team, headed by Joseph Downing, goes to extraordinary lengths to ensure you have the best experience possible. Don’t be shy — tell the staff why you’re staying and let it work magic for you.
• The extensive art in the mezzanine is one of Ireland’s finest privately owned collections. Take a gander and keep your eyes peeled for its soon-to-be-launched art trail.
• There’s a healthy breakfast served in collaboration with BodyByrne, one of Dublin’s go-to gyms, that provides a refreshing alternative to the usual full Irish spread.
• The dining offering is the best in the city under one roof. You needn’t leave the luxury hotel — every mood and taste is catered for here between the two restaurants, gallery and bar.
• The private meeting rooms have natural light and large windows — a detail that makes a big difference to corporate clients.
What to Know
• The hotel sits in a central location just off luxury shopping corridor Grafton Street. And it’s an eight-minute walk to popular attractions Trinity College, home of the treasured 9th-century Book of Kells, and St. Stephen’s Green park. It’s also next to the city’s Creative Quarter, which is filled with galleries, cafés, restaurants and bars.
• While you’re as city center as can be, noise needn’t be a problem here — just request a quiet room and you won’t hear a peep.
• While most reservations come with a complimentary full Irish breakfast spread, it isn’t a given. Double check to see if your room has the meal included.
• The Gallery caters to meetings in a fabulously informal way. Simply request a table and stay all day on the plush sofas with juices, teas and coffee at your beck and call.
• Irish designers rule the accommodations here. Expect Irish custom woven carpets and Lissadell linens.
• Choose from 11 room categories, ranging from the 270-square-foot Superior Classic to the 1,507-square-foot Presidential Suite, which comes with a bar, dining area and lounge, original work by Irish artists, a steam room and sauna in its own private wing of the boutique hotel.
• Marble bathrooms, heated floors, LCD TV, Nespresso coffee machines, complimentary Wi-Fi, Aromatherapy Associates bathroom products and a dedicated work space come as standard amenities.
• Wilde is not a stuffy fine-dining experience — although the food is certainly of a high standard. Instead, the restaurant prides itself on a laidback vibe with solid service, fresh produce and generous portions.
• Balfes is where the chic set comes to play. Make it your business to attend its brunch, a delicious sweet-and-savory menu of French-bistro-inspired delicacies.
• The Sidecar bar gives a Great Gatsby-esque experience. Look out for its enormous martini trolley, which it will wheel to your table and make yours just the way you like it.
• The Gallery’s juice menu, scones, sandwiches and sweet potato fries are a few of the regular clientele’s favorites.