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“The best place I've stayed in a long time”

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Lough Eske Castle, a Solis Hotel & Spa
Ranked #2 of 7 Hotels in Donegal Town
Certificate of Excellence
Toronto, Canada
Level 3 Contributor
3 reviews
“The best place I've stayed in a long time”
Reviewed 30 January 2010

Couldn't fault this place...the service, dinner and breakfast, location, facilities - everything! It's an amazing place and would highly recommend it to everyone. It can be a little tricky to find at night-time but just stop and ask any of the locals if you get lost. We were lucky enough to be there in the snow and it was magical.

  • Stayed December 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank fisher82
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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2,308 reviews from our community

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Belfast
Level 4 Contributor
35 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 January 2010

We like most others were initally reticent to spend Christmas away from home, but after four days in Solis Lough Eske we will never cook a Turkey again at Christmas, and hope to return to Lough Eske. Like other reviewers we arrived on 23 Dec and whilst no doubt the landscape was a winter wonderland type, a bit of grit on the road would have made a lot of difference as the conditions were truly trecherous but thats the only gripe that I have. On approaching the Hotel, one can be nothing but impressed a truly fantastic restoration.
The staff without exception were polite and courteous and unlike most other 5* hotels they wil actually chat with you and they were great and none seemed to begrudge working over Christmas (Apparently the Hotel Generally is only open Thurs-Sun so once New Years Day was over the whole staff will be able to have a few days off).
The staff were very good with children and appreciated the importance on Santa and Rudolpf to such an extent that at 10pm on Christmas Eve, whilst our son was still excited about what things from his Christmas list Santa would bring , one of the staff from the bar brought carrots and a glass of milk for our two visitors delivering presents later that night.
The food was fantastic, breakfast, champagne brunch, bar snacks or evening meal were fresh and tasty.
My wife used the spa facilities and the whole family the pool and it was very relaxing.
I really cannot recomend Solis Lough high enough every request is answered with a smile no matter how obscure. (eg Have a problem on Christmas Eve with a Wii that will not connect to the TV? The electrian arrives and sorts out the problem 1 hour later). This place is the best

  • Stayed December 2009, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Conorsdad1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
midlands
Level 4 Contributor
44 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 47 helpful votes
Reviewed 17 January 2010

Like other reviewers, we went to Lough Eske for Xmas, 2 of us taking advantage of the extra free night. After an extremely fraught journey, the rest of our stay was entirely stress-free although I do agree with another reviewer that the driveway outside the front door was lethal and could have been salted.

The staff at this hotel were really friendly, happy to share local knowledge and the service was 100% excellent. I was also really impressed with the spa treatments (although the icy walk to it was scarey).

We booked 2 junor suites which were spacious, well appointed and beautifully presented. Ours overlooked the courtyard & mountains - great - but my son was less impressed with his view of the roof and car park.

One reservation was that the restaurant menu choice was quite limited and there was little for a vegetarion apart from the rather boring option of veg lasagne. However the Xmas day lunch was really impressive, especially considering the number of people being catered for. Overall a much better option than shopping and catering at home.

  • Stayed December 2009, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank bpo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Dublin, Ireland
Level 6 Contributor
129 reviews
55 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 136 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 January 2010

I was slightly nervous about booking a Christmas away at an hotel for myself and 4 others including my mother in law who never spends Christmas away from her own home. However the ratings on this site were so good and that combined with the response i received from the Sales office I proceeded and I have to say the best decision I ever made regarding christmas. From damp and grey Dublin on Christmas Eve we drove through varying weather conditions until we reached the snowy grounds, frozen lake and the twinkling castle at Lough Eske. This was slightly spoiled by the very icy path just outside the main entrance which I felt should have been their priority for guests arriving that evening given the freezing conditions. The same regarding the driveway up to the hotel which was windy, dark and quite icy. Reception advised me it had been gritted earlier. A pleasant enough girl at reception offered us a glass of mulled wine (we were too late for the mulled wine and mince pie reception) . The only porter we met was excellent, collected all the luggage from our car at the main door, brought it all to our room and then parked the car. The rooms are just as you see on the website. We had a very welcome complimentary upgrade to a junior suite which was very spacious, well appointed, with every necessity provided for our stay. This included gowns/slippers/welcome pack with choclates and minature spirits, 2 plasma screen tvs, excellent toiletries including a candle and matches by the bath, coffee table books, complimentary water in minibar, super comfy 6 and a half feet beds with canopy, complimentary shoe shine each night, and in this case a view of the garden and spa area. My other dread was that as it was an all inclusive deal the food would not be of a good standard. Totally wrong. We had our choice of anything from the menu on 2 of the evenings and Christmas supper on the other. The Christmas dinner, a buffet for about 200 in the ballroom, preceded by a champagne reception was excellent quality and more choice/variety than one could ever eat in one sitting. There was a champagne brunch on St Stephen's Day followed by Archery out in the snow and a table quiz in the afternoon. My fears that the staff might appear unhappy to be working over the Christmas period were also unfounded. About 50% appeared to be local and the rest from outside of Ireland. Each and every one had an excellent standard of english and top rate communication skills. There was music provided on 2 days in the bar area and joy of joys,,, no televisions in any of the common areas. Guests sat around the 3 areas with real log fires or the library or bar area. No clocks and no name badges worn by staff members. Our only additional costs were drinks , which were 5 star hotel prices as were any coffees ordered outside the dining room. (3.60 for a cappucino). There are 95 rooms in this hotel and I understood that it was full. However it never felt crowded and the few children that were there were rarely seen!

On leaving the same doorman/porter collected our luggage, deiced the cars, drove them to the entrance and loaded them - a busy man that day given that almost everyone was leaving over the course of the morning.

I cannot recommend this experience highly enough. If I was to pick a couple of niggly negatives, it would be around the gritting of the circa 1 mile drive around a frozen lake up to the castle and a slightly less than enthusiastic member of staff in the thermal suite/spa on Stephen's Day.

  • Stayed December 2009, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Ritabix
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Meath
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 January 2010

After reading prior reviews on this hotel, I would have to concur with all those that gave full marks to this hotel. I attended a wedding here between Christmas and New Year 2009, and I have to say that everything about this hotel and staff was exceptional, full marks in all categories which is very unusual. All staff without exception were at all times friendly, curteous, helpful and all gave an incredibly high level of customer service.
Food from breakfast to afternoon tea through to evening meals were outstanding.
The only thing might be a problem for some would have been the long walk from the front desk to our room but for us that wasnt a problem but it might put some people off so do check if this might be an issue for you.
I havent even mentioned the fantastic location, the spa and leisure center and etc...
Definitely worth a vist, can't wait to go back!!

  • Stayed December 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank fivestarcampers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
galway
Level 5 Contributor
66 reviews
27 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 January 2010

had a 4 day christmas break here and can't praise this hotel enough.The staff were excellent,very comfortable throughout, with well attended log fires.The food was incredibly tasty,huge variety especially for breakfast ,pricing very good in the bar for food and drinks.The pool and treatment rooms were high class, though you do have to go outside to access same but it's v.near.The christmas day lunch had to be seen to be believed !! such a fantastic array of food.The entertainment was v. good, and the porters were so helpful to get us on our way in the snow !

  • Stayed December 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank jayGalway
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Dublin
Level 4 Contributor
27 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
Reviewed 30 December 2009

One of the best all round experiences I have had in any hotel, beautiful rooms and grounds. Exceptional friendly service from every staff member. Also tried the restaurant as with everything else was first class. Amazing hotel to excape for a few days!

  • Stayed September 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank gregm35
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Lough Eske Castle, a Solis Hotel & Spa

Property: Lough Eske Castle, a Solis Hotel & Spa
Address: Lough Eske, Donegal Town, Ireland
Region: Ireland > County Donegal > Donegal Town
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Romantic Hotel in Donegal Town
#3 Family Hotel in Donegal Town
#3 Business Hotel in Donegal Town
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:5 star — Lough Eske Castle, a Solis Hotel & Spa 5*
Number of rooms: 96
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Lough Eske Castle, a Solís Hotel & Spa is a historic castle dating to the 15th century and closely identified with the O'Donnell Clan, the founding fathers of Donegal. Set in a secluded storybook location within 43 acres of native woodland on the shores of Lough Eske with the dramatic Bluestack Mountains as a stunning backdrop, it is the ideal place to relax and experience superior hospitality and exceptional friendly service. Winner of the 'World's Best Luxury Country Hotel' title in 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012 and topping 'My Guide Ireland's Top 10 Hotels in Ireland, this lovingly restored castle hotel blends its historic past with a dash of contemporary luxury where you can escape into a world of relaxed elegance. From the spa to the dining table to your beautifully appointed guestroom, we provide a truly accommodating environment where our dedication to the guest is thoughtful, reliable, consistent and complete - a place where superb service and superior amenities make every day here a perfect day. Step into Solís Lough Eske Castle, and you step into an imposing Tudor-baronial castle, lavishly refurbished in 2007 and extended to create the modern comforts and graceful luxury of a world class boutique hotel. With stunning views and easy access to the great outdoors, the natural, unspoiled landscape is as magnificent as the hotel itself. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Lough Eske Castle Hotel Donegal Town
Solis Lough Eske Castle Donegal
Solis Lough Eske Castle Hotel

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