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“Irish Idyll” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Dolphin Beach House

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Dolphin Beach House
Ranked #9 of 50 Clifden B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
11 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Irish Idyll”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 14 July 2013

This is one of those hotel 'finds' that are so exceptional you think hard before sharing. The charm of Dolphin Beach House unfolds slowly but surely. The location is superb, on the coast of the evocatively-named Lower Sky Road, ten minutes' drive from Clifden. The house itself consists of an old stone cottage cleverly extended to incorporate nine (I think) guest rooms, all but one of which has a sea view. Five open directly onto a terrace and have their own distinctive chunky wood furniture outside for sitting, gazing and thinking about nothing much. If you come from London, you'd describe Dolphin Beach House it as a 'chic boutique B&B' and expect to pay three times as much as the published room rate. The rooms are large and attractively stylish, all wood and light-coloured fabrics, sparklingly clean, and flooded with Connemara light which can be blue-dazzling with sunshine or dulled with sea mist: both are beautiful. This is the West of Europe, after all, and the mist rolls in from the Atlantic -- but can lift as fast it came if you are lucky. The rooms have elegant wood floors and comfortable hand-crafted beds with exquisite linen, carefully-chosen random but interesting pieces of furniture including in our room a chaise longue, two soft easy chairs and a coffee table, a vintage screen, two antique chests, lots of lovely lamps and fascinating prints, paintings and books. Our bathroom was large with both bath and walk-in shower. The highlight of Dolphin Beach House, however, is the 'vibe' created by the Foyle family, and in particular by Clodagh, who combines relaxed friendliness with extreme professionalism and a brisk efficiency. Clodagh has been described by another reviewer as slightly eccentric: my Irish husband would say she was simply the best of Irish, while I would describe her as the ideal hostess - highly intelligent and knowledgeable, thoughtful and amusing. She and her smiling colleagues prepare a wonderful breakfast, cook a mean dinner of fresh produce most evenings, light you a fire if there's a chill in the air, are always on hand with trays of coffee or tea, and somehow manage to clean the place from top to bottom each day without ever disturbing anyone. But what we would return for, above all, are the magnificent views and walks from the house. From every room, including the dining room and sitting room, you can see the tiny sandy cove (where the brave can bathe), the sweep of the bay and on to the wide Atlantic. The exhilarating walk along the cliffs from the house provides some of the most spectacular cliff scenery in Europe, with colourful rocks, caves and tunnels, and seas that range from gentle to tumultuous. This is a wonderful, special place, with people to match -- and very good craic in Clifden's many pubs if you want further evidence. It is not the place for those seeking entertainment, noise and bustle, (no TVs in bedrooms, for example) but if you want beauty, peace, comfort, warmth and kindness, make the journey to Clifden and then on to Dolphin Beach House. If its magic affects you as it did us, you may start to believe that perhaps heaven DOES exist, and that you have found it.

  • Stayed July 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank SusanSturrock
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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212 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
    185
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    5
    1
    1
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (43)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
zurich
Level Contributor
47 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 14 July 2013

We stayed here for 3 nights: The house is in a very cute location, with its own small pebbly beach. The house itself is spotlessly clean. The hosts, in particular Clodagh, are very friendly and welcoming, we felt like we were sincerely welcome and she was exceptionally kind and helpful. The breakfasts are absolutely super! I highly recommend this place.

  • Stayed July 2013, travelled with friends
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank thzurich
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Woodridge
Level Contributor
24 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 June 2013

This B & B was our first stop on our first visit to Ireland. Our hostess was welcoming and allowed us to check in early. The rooms were wonderful and the views, especially from the dining area, were even better. Location was easy to find, but one lane road made us wish it was closer to town.

  • Stayed June 2013, travelled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Maggimcc3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Leicester, England
Level Contributor
55 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 46 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 16 June 2013

We stayed here for one night on a recent trip around this part of Ireland and would definitely stay again. The setting is wonderful and the welcome was warm. Our room was very impressive with excellent attention to detail. We called in advance so were able to order an evening meal which was a good move as we couldn't really see any other options locally. Breakfast was great with an excellent choice served in a dining area overlooking sea views. All in all a ver memorable stay.

  • Stayed April 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Happytraveller08
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Homer Glen, Illinois
Level Contributor
10 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 12 June 2013

I just loved our stay here. I made friends with a horse, I called him "white horse,"- very creative, I know. And he is a bold friend who will want to frolic with you if you come to visit him in the fields nearby. All joking aside... My friend and I were traveling through the area and stayed here for 2 nights. They were a highlight of our trip and we did not want to leave.

The views are spectacular (we had an ocean view room on the 2nd floor). The rooms are comfortable and spacious. The bathrooms were well equipped, clean and lovely. For breakfast the proprietor, Clodagh, was a breath of fresh air with lots of extremely yummy options. Clodagh was so helpful and sweet that we just wanted to pack her up and take her with us. We just loved her!

This B&B is located just outside of Clifden town. It is close enough that you can walk in (2-3 miles). But you may want to take your car as the way back does not provide a sidewalk, good night time lighting, or a flat even walk after dark. My friend and I had just climbed Croagh Patrick for the first time, so we were completely exhausted and needed to take it a bit easy on our legs. We drove into town and parked behind the vistors center, and took a taxi back.

This was a wonderful place the just relax and enjoy the Connemara/ Galway region. I will not soon forget our stay or all the amazing people we met. Did I already say- we never wanted to leave!?!

Room Tip: Stay here, you will not be dissappointed. Sea view rooms are well worth it!
See more room tips
  • Stayed May 2013, travelled with friends
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank JB AC B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Virginia Beach, Virginia
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 10 June 2013

A friend and I stayed here for 2 nights on a recent trip to Ireland. The house is simply gorgeous with a beautiful view of the bay. Wildflowers and green hills make the location very picturesque.

Clodagh Foyle was very warm and hospitable and the daily breakfast was delicious. She had very good suggestions about where to spend our time while we were in the area and she genuinely cared about whether we were having a good time.

The rooms are clean and spacious with wonderful views of the either the garden or the bay. The ensuite was equally clean and spacious and even had soap and shampoo samples--a nice touch. The bed was quite comfortable.

We had left our car in town one evening and had taken a taxi back to the house. The next morning, Clodagh inquired of another guest to give us a lift back to town, which the guest graciously did. I thought it was just wonderful that everyone was so willing to help out another guest.

The house itself is located about a 5 minute drive out of town. If you drive into town and plan on enjoying the nightlife, a taxi back is about 10 euro and there's a free car park behind the visitor's centre. Even if you go easy on the pints, the road back is narrow and winding and may be difficult to maneuver in the dark. I personally drove it one night on the way back to the house and I didn't have any trouble.

We enjoyed ourselves so much, that we were trying to find a way to stay another night in the area when it came time to leave. This truly was one of the highlights of our trip and I know I'll be back again.

Room Tip: The White Lady room has an amazing view of the bay.
See more room tips
  • Stayed May 2013, travelled with friends
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank SandsLVT
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
boston
Level Contributor
7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 June 2013 via mobile

Clodagh Foley continues a family tradition of gracious and warm hospitality. We could not have dreamed of a more perfect venue, perched above the bay, 10 minutes from Clifden centre. Spectacular views, great and hearty Irish breakfast ( and if you are lucky Clodagh will be serving dinner ( call ahead). The rooms are spic-and-span, comfy, very nicely decorated. We stayed three nights and set out on adventures each day: Could have stayed a week! Recommended most highly!

  • Stayed June 2013
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank jbenherman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Dolphin Beach House

Property: Dolphin Beach House
Address: Lower Sky Road, Clifden, Ireland
Region: Ireland > Western Ireland > Province of Connacht > County Galway > Clifden
Amenities:
Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #9 of 50 B&Bs / Inns in Clifden
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Number of rooms: 8
Also Known As:
Dolphin Beach House Hotel Clifden

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