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“Great host”
Review of Ely House

Ely House
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Ely House
Helena, MT
Level Contributor
966 reviews
90 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 454 helpful votes
“Great host”
Reviewed 7 January 2014

This B&B was handy to Clonmacnoise and was open in early Jan so we nabbed it. On entering it smelled heavily of smoke so we expected the worst. But the smell did not invade the halls, rooms or breakfast area.

Brian loaned us his book about Clonmacnoise so we made a quick late afternoon run up to it. The Shannon was high (lapping the stone walls around Clonmacnoise) and the dark came early at this time of year and it was raining. But what a place! And it turned out Brian had written this book himself, get one from him or at the visitor center.

We planned to picnic in the room, seemingly not much happening in Shannonbridge at this time. But Brian said we needed to walk down to Killeen's Pub. We learned that one really needs to follow Brian's suggestions!

What a place, Brian says you cannot really describe it to tourists and he is right. Not a polished, citified place but a real place with real folks to talk too. By a wonderful fire. Trad music many nights. And Derry was the local historian behind the bar who, along with Brian, directed us to other places we needed to visit, and told us where to stop for the key to Clonfert Cathedral.

Do what Brian says, follow his directions! Great place.

  • Stayed January 2014, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank vintagetrailer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
boru22, Owner at Ely House, responded to this review, 9 January 2014
Glad you enjoyed your stay. Just to clarify that we lit a turf fire at Christmas time which gives a smokey aroma near the fireplace....It is a tradition in our home and gives a lovely ambience! Our modern heating system means that we don't light a fire very often! Thanks Brian
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30 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (3)
Date | Rating
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English first
Claremont, California
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 16 June 2013

After visiting the ruins of Clonmacnoise, we found Ely House where we spent our next to last night of our two week visit to Ireland and Northern Ireland. Brian and his wife were amazing hosts. Brian wrote a wonderful little book on Clonmacnoise which we highly recommend. It is historically accurate and very accessible with great art work. We were traveling with our adult daughter and we all three appreciated their recommendations for dinner and their warm and welcoming spirit!

  • Stayed June 2013, travelled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank Linda J V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Kingston upon Thames, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 May 2013

Another night, another wonderful b&b. If you're looking for the craic look no further than Ireland's b&b owners... Have to admit, not the best we've visited but the others set a high bar; the en-suite was a lttle jaded. I got the feeling Brian was stretched a bit thin at the moment, but you couldn't ask for a better host, so helpful and accommodating (and hugely knowlegeable about Clonmacnoise). And don't miss Killeen's bar & grocery...

  • Stayed May 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Simon G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Oxford, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
12 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 September 2012

A group of 5 friends stayed at Ely house in May 2012. The B&B was very comfortable and the village of Shannonbridge is beautiful and has some great pubs with live music, and nearby Clocmanoise is very interesting. The only difficulty we had was finding somewhere to eat as the town's only restaurant (which is supposed to be very good) closes early unless you book in advance. I would definitely recommend a stopover at Ely house and Shannonbridge for anyone looking for somewhere to stay in this area.

  • Stayed May 2012, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
Thank Planning_monster
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Germany, Germany
Level Contributor
20 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 August 2012

The rooms are definitively worn out and need refurbishment. However, the host is very friendly and the price is OK. A place to stay visiting Clonmacnoise. An brilliant advice was having supper at the local village taverne (Killeens) - a typical Irish Pub - a wonderful place (5 min walking distance) for a family.

  • Stayed July 2012, travelled with family
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Helpful?
Thank JamesHerriot3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Paris
Level Contributor
41 reviews
32 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 55 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 April 2012

We came to Shannonbridge quite late and were greeted by friendly Brian, who sent us off to the pub (a great one) for dinner. The room was spotless and there was lots of hot water, with comfortable beds. The next morning, we were the last ones out but did not feel unwelcome in spite of our late arising. Breakfast was delicious even though it was off season and I did not expect anything special. Brian came in to ask if there was anything we needed or if any advice was wanted. If we had stayed longer, there were lots of books and magazines about the local area and it would have been a good base for exploring. We didn't stay long enough to see if there was a sitting room.

The one thing that was not ideal was that there is a fairly ugly factory or power plant across the way. But once in the house you don't need to pay any attention to that. We will certainly stay here again if we come this way.

Killeens pub nearby was practically empty because we visited on a Tuesday night in February, and our hearts fell when we saw the emptiness (even though it is a picture-perfect Irish pub like what you see in the movies!) and that the menu had only soup and sandwiches. But when they arrived-- what soup and what sandwiches! Everything absolutely delicious and homemade, including the bread-- and I live in Paris, I'm slightly spoiled about food! Herself is a fabulous cook at Killeens. Will definitely be going back some day.

  • Stayed February 2012, travelled with family
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Helpful?
Thank Bracing
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Virginia
Level Contributor
38 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 September 2011

We had a super time in Shannonbridge - we wanted to stay in a typical family run Irish B&B and Ely House proved to be perfect - reasonably priced, clean as a pin and conveniently located just outside of town within walking distance to Kileen's Pub where we watched Kilkenny defeat Tipperary for the All Ireland Hurling Championship. The locals were very friendly and made us feel at home. Unfortunately, the recommended Old Fort Restaurant was closed so we didn't get to try their cuisine. Brian was a super host - he made us an excellent Irish breakfast - hard to get my fussy egg order right but he made it happen.

Room Tip: Brian let us choose from the open rooms.
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  • Stayed September 2011, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
Thank jimmie1941
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Ely House

Property: Ely House
Address: Cloghan Road, Shannonbridge, Ireland
Region: Ireland > Province of Leinster > County Offaly > Shannonbridge
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi )
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 3 B&Bs / Inns in Shannonbridge
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Number of rooms: 12
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Enjoy a visit to Ely House located in the riverside village of Shannonbridge with its waterside marina, traditional pubs and award winning Old Fort Restaurant. Brian and Dympna O'Carroll at Ely House offer you a warm welcome and offer guest rooms with en-suite bathrooms, TVs, Wifi and tea/coffee facilities. Close to the lost monastic city of Clonmacnoise, Ely House is an ideal central location for exploring Ireland. Ely house is eco friendly with sustainable energy heating and hot water. Activities such as fishing, golfing and boating are at your doorstep and we are only 20 mins from Athlone, Birr, Ballinasloe and Tullamore. ... more   less 
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