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“Getting a break”
Review of The Strand Hotel

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The Strand Hotel
Ranked #3 of 4 Hotels in Ballyliffin
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 6 June 2014

My sister and I have just returned from a 2day break at the Strand Hotel. We enjoyed a very relaxing stay and the service provided by the staff was excellent, from the moment we arrived to we left we were made to feel very welcome. We talked to other guests who had stayed at the Strand previously and had returned as they were happy with their stay.
The hotel is not the most modern place but none the less is very clean, tidy, welcoming, good food, excellent service and value for money which in my opinion adds up to providing a great stay. Thank you and I hope to return again soon.

  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled with family
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1  Thank Margaret M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
StrandBallyliffin, Manager at The Strand Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 9 June 2014

Thank you for your review and comments. I am delighted that you enjoyed your stay with us.

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202 - 208 of 340 reviews

Reviewed 4 June 2014

went to the Strand Hotel on the second evening of our short break in Ballyliffin, having stayed in it previously and enjoyed it.

on arrival, it was clear the staff were not pleased to see us, since no-one greeted or welcomed us and we found our own table (despite the fact the place was nearly empty and completely void of atmosphere). eventually someone brought us a menu at which point we asked for the wine list. when the person came back, we were told of half a dozen wines that were NOT available with the pathetice excuse that it had been a bank holiday yesterday!! (ever heard of forward planning??) we chose one of the other wines only to then be told that it was NOT available either!! ended up having to choose a more expensive but less attractive sounding wine which we were obviously not very happy about.

having ordered our food, we could not believe it when the starter came out 2 minutes later! apart from the fact we did not want the food served so quickly (we were there to relax), it was also a clear indication that the food was just being reheated in a microwave. the chicken and ham vol-au-vents were bland. when ordering our main, we were not able to choose our own side orders but instead were informed that the meals came with a 'selection of potatoes and vegetables'. well, i just could not believe it when we were brought out BOILED CABBAGE AND CARROTS to accompany our fish dishes. and to top it all off, they were overcooked (i suspect leftover from the day before or from lunchtime and reheated). DREADFUL. Again, the food was bland, helped only by lots of pepper.

i had conveyed my dissatisfaction with the different aspects of our dining experience to staff at different stages of the evening, who quite frankly could not have cared less. in fact, there were several occasions during the evening when they were talking to each other in a group and looking over at us, so it was clear they were talking about us!! from their body language and facial expressions, it was evident that they viewed us as problem customers, when in fact they should have been examining what had gone wrong with their service and how they could try and improve the situation. they also clearly do not recognise the damage they, as staff, are potentially doing to this hotel and the important role they play in getting and keeping customers. people will simply not return.

i was very sorry that we had not stayed to eat in our own hotel up the hill (Ballyliffin Hotel N.B. NOT the lodge/spa hotel) as the meal we had there the first evening had been fantastic and it had been service with a smile all the way. i would have preffered to give my hard earned money to somewhere that values my custom and who makes me feel like they actually want me to enjoy myself. it is difficult to understand how/why places like the Strand Hotel are happy to lose customers at a time when it must be economically very hard for them to survive.

if the owner of the Strand Hotel is reading this, i sincerely hope you act quick before it is too late. go up and see how the Ballyliffin Hotel does it - it was busy the whole time we were there. their customer service and food is first class and they treated us like valued guests from the minute we arrived to the minute we left.

  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled with friends
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2  Thank FoodieBabe33
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
StrandBallyliffin, Owner at The Strand Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 9 June 2014

Thank you for your review and comments. Apologies about the mix up on the wines. It should have been explained to you that we have delisted all of our wines in preparation for a new menu which we hope to launch this week. We have been running the stock down on all of our wines to make way for the new stock. This should have been made clear to you.
If we had known that you wanted to relax we certainly would not have served your starter as soon as we did. I can categorically say that we do not microwave or reheat food so I am disappointed that you would jump to such conclusions. We are a busy Hotel with a good reputation for food which isn't achieved with microwave ovens.
The menu that you opted to dine from was our Early Bird Menu which is a very popular menu but clearly states that all main courses are served with Cream Potatoes, Vegetables and chips. At €14 for a 3 course dinner you can imagine how popular this menu is and offers great value.
Having checked CCTV I am at a loss to see any staff standing around "talking about you". I am very disappointed that you didn't enjoy your meal and I have noted your comments.
I am delighted that you enjoyed your stay at The Ballyliffin Hotel.

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Reviewed 31 May 2014

I agree with most of the comments of the other reviews, but to narrow it down this is how I best describe it.

Yes hotel is dated could do with a face lift
Garden could be do with some tables, chairs etc also decking could do with a paint. It's a shame as it overlooks the sea and could be so nice. We had to sit on very dirty chairs in order to enjoy the view and our drinks.
As far as the room goes, yes dated but clean and comfy beds.

The 22"TV with a large back on it did not many channels but we don't go away to watch tv, Unless the weather is bad and you have no choice..

The telephone was filthy and didn't work as the wires were hanging out of the wall.
Be aware there in NO WIFI in the bedrooms and there were apparently a few spots to pick it up in the lobby but we were not able to find it for my laptop. We just had it on our phones but that is not ideal if you want to watch or do something on-line. Kids would not be happy without their gadgets. lol

We weren't lucky enough to get a sea view room but we did view part of the mountains.

There was a window on the landing floor which was hanging off, and my partner easily fixed it... so why had it not been done? who knows but it didn't look very good.

As for the food we know some of it was frozen because we asked, but each to their own as I read a review were others say they enjoyed the food, maybe we were just unlucky in what we choose my partner had a curry and it was definitely not home made and was tasteless.
Breakfast was ok, we are not keen on white pudding that was served but you could request any change you wanted, but something for everyone.

There is a hairdryer in fact we had two!!!
Shower only but not sure if that was for every room

There is not much atmosphere in the hotel compared to the hotel across the road which was buzzing when we went to the bar. It is a 4 star with 4star prices but in this case you get what you pay for it guess.

We too were not asked about our stay, which was not what you expect in a hotel.

On the whole we would give it 3 out of 5, thankfully the weather was nice and we spent it outside. On the whole w would not go back to the Strand Hotel.
My advise for what it is worth the owner needs to spend some money on updating with a lick of paint, get the garden sorted out, it could be really lovely with very little effort. If they want to bring the tourists in they need to up their game.

  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank Castiel R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
StrandBallyliffin, Owner at The Strand Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 5 June 2014

Thank you for taking the time to review your stay. Our garden is a beautiful area of the Hotel, a picture of which can be seen on our Facebook page (taken a few weeks ago) after our gardener had painted the garden benches and the decking area ( not the decking floor ). We have undertaken some painting and decor improvements since January and we will be updating tv's as soon as we can. I have reviewed you comments with housekeeping re phone.
The Wi-Fi certainly is a problem and thank you for giving us that feedback when Kate (our receptionist) asked you "how your stay was" on departure. She noted your comments in our complaints log. I am delighted to say that we are upgrading the wi-fi accessibility asap.
I am baffled about your reference to frozen food? Thank you for the advice.

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Reviewed 28 May 2014

my wife and I were attending a wedding in Ballyliffin lodge we were unable to get a room there it was recommended to us to stay at the strand hotel as it was only yards away so we booked on booking .com when we arrived the room was not ready eventually we were able to check in went back to our family wedding on our return at 2-45 am the hotel door was locked we could not get in after 20 minutes we got someone we were told by the porter that he was told everyone was in so he locked the front door several members of my family who were also booked here were still at the wedding on checking out we were not asked how was our stay just account and bye clean basic first and last stay here customer service goes a long way sorry!

  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank brassderry
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
StrandBallyliffin, Owner at The Strand Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 5 June 2014

I am disappointed that you would not return. Unfortunately we do need to be secure in the early hours of the morning so the front door is usually locked after 2am. That aside I would not wish anyone to be waiting outside for any length of time. I have reviewed our lock down policies with our night porters. Customer service sure does go a long way and lasting impressions matter, a point which my reception team have been reminded of. Thank you.

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Reviewed 22 May 2014

We stayed for 4 nights from the Wednesday of Easter week and had a very enjoyable stay once again.
Our room was clean and comfortable and kept that way throughout our stay.
Breakfast was lovely every morning, what a view from the breakfast - room !!
We had dinner in the hotel every night and thoroughly enjoyed it every time.
Everyone is so friendly and helpful, nothing is a bother. Thanks very much everyone.
We are looking forward to our next visit.

  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank 2020vision
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
StrandBallyliffin, Owner at The Strand Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 5 June 2014

Thank you. We pride ourselves on our customer service, our standards and our value. I am delighted that you enjoyed the stay and look forward to your return.

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Reviewed 18 May 2014

Stayed here in April for 2 nights and had a lovely time.
The hotel itself is a little dated but was very clean, warm & with extreemly friendly staff.
We had a couple of small niggles and they were dealt with efficiently and with good nature.
We did not eat in the hotel at night but the food looked very good and some of the locals we spoke to "raved" about it.
We did however have breakfast and both days it was very good.
this hotel is not a 4 star so dont expect that. But as a 3 star it represents extreemly good value for money.
We will definitely be going back.

  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank 19ferg
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
StrandBallyliffin, Owner at The Strand Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 5 June 2014

Thank you for that wonderful feedback. I am delighted that you enjoyed your stay.

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Reviewed 11 May 2014

Family meal for 5 of us on New Years day, food was second to none and the staff were very friendly, have visited this hotel on numerous occasions and have never been had a bad meal. Very clean, good atmosphere.

  • Stayed: January 2014, travelled with family
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Thank Tracy Marie S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
StrandBallyliffin, Owner at The Strand Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 5 June 2014

Thank you. I am delighted that you enjoyed your visit.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Strand Hotel

Address: Strand Hotel Main Street, Ballyliffin, Ireland
Region: Ireland > County Donegal > Ballyliffin
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 4 Hotels in Ballyliffin
Price Range: £62 - £105 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:2 star — The Strand Hotel 2*
Number of rooms: 38
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Family run Hotel, near to Ballyliffin Golf Club and overlooking the beautiful Pollan beach. Ideal location for family holidays, a short break, your wedding or a conference. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Strand Hotel Ballyliffin, County Donegal

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