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“Could Be Better”

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Slieve Donard Resort and Spa
Ranked #1 of 16 Hotels in Newcastle
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 15 July 2014

The Slieve Donard is set in a stunning location. It is a beautiful hotel, serves food that is a good cut above the average and has attentive, friendly staff. We stayed for a short break in a superior double room which was spacious with a top class bed and a view over the bay to die for. The beach is immediately outside the hotel and with the tide out, we went for a pleasant walk along an almost deserted shore. We could have walked for miles.
With these ingredients, this hotel should be competing to be among the best hotels in Ireland. But it isn't.
The hotel falls short of the mark in just a few areas, but they happen to be important ones. The first is easy to fix. When we arrived, reception was not busy and the staff were very efficient in getting us registered. In fact they were a little too efficient and omitted to give us any helpful information about the hotel or its facilities, including the need to reserve our package-included evening dinner. This resulted in a minor, but nevertheless slightly embarrassing ticking off when we duly turned up at the Oak restaurant later that night.
When we settled into our room, we tried out the spa area. This was a second area of disappointment. The staff were excellent, but the facilities themselves were a little limited and looked a bit tired despite the spectacular views from the sauna. The steam room in particular ... well it smelled, and not in a good way. No wafts of eucalyptus here, just the musty smell of what seemed to be a few days worth of sweat. So Slieve Donard, a little squirt of perfume would help.
The final area of disappointment is a little more difficult to put a finger on. The hotel lacks ambience. When I am staying away, there is nothing I like more than settling down to a coffee or a beer and switching off. Sadly, the bar area did switch us off. It felt clinical, too formal. We sat for a minute until a waiter arrived, made our excuses and opted for a walk into Newcastle town to a local cafe.
Make no mistake, this a high quality hotel. But it could be a lot better.

Room Tip: Go for front of hotel, overlooking the sea.
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  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank bscc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Stephen_Meldrum_GM, General Manager at Slieve Donard Resort and Spa, responded to this reviewResponded 24 July 2014

Dear bscc,

Thank you for taking your time to leave feedback. It is very important to us.

We appreciate all the comments and feedback you stated and all the ideas we will take them all on board.

I apologise for our reception staff as they seemed too attentive but we try our best to provide 5* customer service . We aim for our customers to have a stress free stay. I will ensure to notify the staff about the smell of the Sauna as this should not be the case.

We would like to take this time to thank you for your time and efforts to write this review and for choosing Hastings Hotels.

We hope to wish you back in the future.

King regards,
Berni McCartney
Guest Services Coordinator

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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1,691 - 1,697 of 3,036 reviews

Reviewed 15 July 2014 via mobile

I heard a great deal about this hotel and decided to stay one weekend. My experience was far from satisfactory. The rooms were average, definitely not with the money. When i sat down to breakfast I discovered I was eating blue moulded bread!!! The staff all seemed to have been trained in a circus, I have never seen the like of it in any 4 or 5 star hotel I have ever stayed in. In my opinion stay somewhere else, this hotel is very over priced and food average!

  • Stayed: July 2014
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
5  Thank Shauna R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Stephen_Meldrum_GM, General Manager at Slieve Donard Resort and Spa, responded to this reviewResponded 24 July 2014

Dear ShaunaR,

Thank you for taking your time to leave feedback. It is very important to us.

We are upset to hear about the issues you occurred during your stay, I will ensure this is looked into right away.

I am surprised to hear about the Blue Mould bread as our products are sourced locally and made in house so we can guarantee our customers local and fresh products, I will ensure to pass this feedback onto the kitchen.

We would like to take this time to thank you for your time and efforts to write this review and for choosing Hastings Hotels.

We hope to wish you back in the future.

King regards,
Berni McCartney
Guest Services Coordinator

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 July 2014

Even on first impressions this hotel looks grand and elegant in a superb setting. Stayed in the superior room and WOW I've never seen a larger bed, so comfy and the room has everything you need.Having the welcome plate with chocolates was also a nice touch! Felt the decor in the bedroom and bathroom could be tweaked a little to modernise and to keep it fresh but again this is not a complaint but a suggestion. Also it would be good to have free WIFI as another improvement. The breakfast was superb with lots of choices and it was very well run with professional caters on hand. we also went to the spa and it was brilliant, so relaxed and the staff again were so professional. the thing that stood out for me in the hotel was the friendliness, level of professionalism/knowledge and superb setting overlooking the bay. easily the best hotel i've stayed in quite a while and would be back in a heartbeat!

  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
Thank Rexy86
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 July 2014

excellent from arrival to departure. felt like a vip. staff couldnt b more helpful. pure relaxation stress-free stay. the place to be to unwind. views fabulous - sea, mountains. swimmingpool sauna... spa...food... cant wait to go again

Room Tip: ask for seaview
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  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Service
Thank 21bubbles21
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Stephen_Meldrum_GM, General Manager at Slieve Donard Resort and Spa, responded to this reviewResponded 24 July 2014

Dear 21bubbles21,

Thank you for taking your time to leave feedback. It is very important to us.

We are delighted to hear that you enjoyed your stay, it makes everything worthwhile for us when we hear the great feedback.

We are happy to hear that you can’t wait to come back and we cannot wait for you to come back either.

All feedback we get we ensure to pass it on to all the relevant departments and I will ensure to pass your great feedback on.

Thank you for taking your time to read this, and thank you for choosing Hastings Hotels.

King regards,
Berni McCartney
Guest Services Coordinator

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 July 2014

Wow! Stunning location,hotel was great,2 nights simply not long enough! Breakfast was everything and more,porridge and Bushmills whiskey ! Lucky to dine in the restaurant which was divine and the service exceptional.
Hope to visit again one day.

Room Tip: We were in a bedroom over the back of spa area overlooking Tennis courts and golf course .not a prob...
See more room tips
  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Service
1  Thank Jackiecresswell
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 July 2014

I booked a treat night for my husband and I to be sadly disappointed by the standard of the bedroom and hotel in general. I've stayed in the Slieve Donard many times but was not impressed on this visit. Our room had stains/marks on a number of walls, wonky lamps, broken bin pedal and no actual handle on the bathroom tap which meant it was difficult to turn on and off. The cooked breakfast was luke warm and went cold quite quickly once on the plate with dead flowers on our breakfast table and most other tables by the looks of things. When we complained to the Manager on duty she gave a very cursory apology, closed the conversation down and affectively that was it. The hotel and their reaction was extremely disappointing for a 4* Hotel.

Thank Sonya M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Stephen_Meldrum_GM, General Manager at Slieve Donard Resort and Spa, responded to this reviewResponded 24 July 2014

Dear Sonya B,

Thank you for taking your time to leave feedback. It is very important to us.

We are upset to hear about the issues you occurred during your stay, I will ensure this is looked into right away.

I am sorry that you did not get the response which you would have preferred, I will also pass this information on.

If you would be so kind, would you please contact me on guestservices@sdh.hastingshotels.com with your room number please and the dates that you stayed so I can get the issue resolved if not already done so.

Any feedback we get we pass it onto the relevant parties to ensure they are aware of how they are performing, I will be sure to pass your comments on.

We would like to take this time to thank you for your time and efforts to write this review and for choosing Hastings Hotels.

We hope to wish you back in the future.

I await your email.

King regards,
Berni McCartney
Guest Services Coordinator

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 July 2014

We stayed in the Slieve Donard in March to celebrate our wedding anniversary. The hotel was impressive in itself, but the location is wonderful. Our room was facing both the sea and the mountains and was very comfortable. A very pleasant stay.

  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
1  Thank Sally M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Slieve Donard Resort and Spa

Address: Downs Road, Newcastle BT33 0AH, Northern Ireland
Region: United Kingdom > Northern Ireland > County Down > Newcastle
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Family Hotel in Newcastle
#1 Romantic Hotel in Newcastle
Price Range: £118 - £331 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Slieve Donard Resort and Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 178
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Nestling at the foot of the Mourne Mountains, the Slieve Donard stands in six acres of private grounds, and is one of Northern Ireland's most popular hotels. The luxurious ESPA Spa commands spectacular panoramic views of the County Down coastline and Mountains of Mourne and provides a perfect oasis of tranquility rivals any spa in Europe today. This superbly maintained Victorian hotel is equally suited to a short break, residential conference or grand event. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Slieve Donard Newcastle
Donard Hotel Slieve
Donard Hotel Newcastle Slieve
Slieve Donard Hotel Newcastle
Slieve Donard Resort And Spa Newcastle, Northern Ireland

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