I had good expectations for this guesthouse-I know Dublin very well and I have always liked the Georgian architecture in the Leeson Street area. As I was travelling on a budget I thought I would forego my usual stay in a hotel and opt for a guesthouse-thinking there couldn't be a huge difference between the two as my stay was short. I couldn't have been more wrong!
The welcome at Abbeyleigh is very brisk and to the point- don't expect a big smile and a welcome at the door, a chat while you wait for a key or to be shown to your room-you are treated like a paying guest, not an old friend. Which wouldn't be such a problem, but for the fact it is a guesthouse-you expect the big welcome and the chat and the friendly touch. The entrance hall is long, with a table with some brochures for tours etc in dublin, but that's it. There is no reception area per se. There are stairs up to the rooms, which is fine-you can't expect an elevator in a Georgian house, but I had to carry my own bags-very unproffessional. Also a small dog was around the downstairs when I arrived-hardly hygienic!
The rooms themselves need to be overhauled!!!The bed was uncomfortable to the point the slightest movement in it reminded you of how awful and hard the mattress was..the tea and coffee facilities are actully an old kettle on a shelf which wasn't very clean. The room itself while clean was severely dated- there has been an explosion in Ireland in recent years of budget furnishing shops such as Argos, Ikea and Dunnes Stores- there is simply no excuse for having bed linen that harks back to the 1950s! the curtains are worse-hanging off the rails and being difficult to pull across. The bathroom was tiny- it had been cleaned but the toiletries had not-it was disgusting to think someone else's soaps/lotions etc had been left there for me to use. The hot water took an age to come out of the tap-and then it was only luke warm.
The heat in the room was also an issue- it was extremely cold, the heat coming from the radiators made little difference. The windows are quite large and single paned- so any heat generated in the room was wasted, it got so bad I had to wear a coat to bed!!!!when I woke the following morning the window was covered in condensation, the damp atmosphere was very unhealthy, again the room was freezing and a dash was made to get dressed just to heat up. The traffic outside was also an issue, it had been loud throughout the night and from first thing it was very noticeable-i was glad I didn't need a lie-in!..Leeson Street is a main route into Dublin city centre so the traffic is constant outside abbeyleigh all day long.
the location is ok-if you know dublin but I'd imagine if you were there as a tourist who wanted to be at the centre of things, abbeyleigh would not be for you. the area is safe but it is at least a twenty minute walk to grafton street (the heart of dublin). It also borders the city's business district and one of the city's wealthiest neighbourhoods- as a result it's dull and boring!my advice would be to opt for a cheap hotel in the city centre-at least it would be warm and you could bring your complaint to someone. As for this guesthouse- if Ireland is experiencing a heatwave and your on a budget then go for it, otherwise stay well away!
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