My husband and I chose this hotel as, by reputation we know the Radisson chain to be good quality hotels and a good standard of accommodation...we particularly wanted a high standard of accommodation as we intended to treat a very dear friend as our guest who joined us from overseas..( English is not her first language ) we wanted everything to be special.and smooth for our two night stay...we also chose this hotel for it's perfect proximity to Athlone town centre and, last, but not least, when we read that parking was available at the hotel and free of charge this was also a most inportant factor in making our choice of accommodation... we came to this hotel with high expectations..
Sadly our expectations were not met...the car park was full on our arrival after a very long drive to reach Athlone..looking for a car space was most stressful and then we were advised later by reception staff that the car park also served as a public car park!! I appreciate that there was a wedding on the evening of our arrival but why advertise "free parking" as part of hotel facilities if the car park is also a public one and liable to be full from time to time? (weekends, of course. when most guests arrive a pure nightmare...!) Does that mean one takes "pot luck" parking at the hotel?? We were most tired and frustrated looking for a car space and we finally had to park on the street after at least a half an hour's futile search... not a very good start to our stay!!!
We checked into our room which was nothing special..only very adequate...maintenance needed re: furniture and I thought it lacked some little touches especially for a four star establishment ..I could, just for one example say that the TV was really old fashioned and dated..most hotels, even 3 star ones, have plasma screen TVs now.. we have stayed in other hotels with a lower star rating and been very pleased without any complaint and did not pay anything like what we paid for this room..
However the real problem started when our friend who was in a single room attempted to sleep and unfortunately her room was directly over the function room where a wedding reception was in full swing until 3am..she was extremely tired as had an exhausting journey to get to Athlone and she phoned reception twice to ask for help as she could not sleep one bit..she was told by reception staff member that although he was very sorry he could not do anything at all to help her..he said he couldn't stop the wedding!! ( very unprofessional indeed!) Our friend pointed out to the receptionist that she herself was a guest too and needed to be considered and helped.. I appreciate the hotel was most likely full on account of the wedding but this was not very customer service orientated in my view and this staff member made no effort or used any initiative in my view to help or appease our friend as this noise was most distressing..Our friend pointed out to this staff member also that in every room there is a message from the Radission Blu CEO stating that if guests are unhappy with any aspect of their stay they should tell any member of staff and the problem would be sorted and if not a money back guarantee....no, we are not looking for money...the message from the Radisson Blu CEO is self explanatory..it is in every room for all guests to see..
On a positive note and , to be fair, the next morning, our friend made a formal complaint at reception about her horrible noise experience and lack of help from reception and the receptionist Claudine, at least listened attentively, empathised and apologised and upgraded my friend to a "Junior Suite" with a lovely view of the Shannon and boats...my poor friend therefore had a decent night's sleep in a quiet comfortable room on the second night of our stay..
Other positives..I am trying to be as fair in my review as possible...Breakfast was fine...there was a good choice and we have no complaints at all on that score..also the location in Athlone was superb being so near the restaurant area and the castle and the view of the boats on the Shannon was a lovely sight from the hotel
What was such a pity also on check out the receptionist never asked if we enjoyed our day...this may seem a small point but I have travelled enough to suggest it is an important one..the check out was sadly purely functional without a smile..
I feel in summary this hotel has so much potential with a beautuful river scene and in an excellent location ...such a pity the above points have brought it down in our estimation ..
Unfortunately we will not be staying in this hotel again on a return trip to Athlone..too many hitches during our stay
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Radisson Blu Hotel, Athlone is situated in the town centre on the banks of the River Shannon overlooking the historic Athlone Castle.Sumptuous food is served daily in the Quayside Bar & Lounge and Elements Restaurant serves innovative dishes which highlight the region and the season’s best ingredients.Synergy Health & Leisure Club is available complimentary to all guests and features an indoor pool, sauna, steam-room and fully equipped gymnasium. The outdoor terrace is overlooks the Marina and is a unique feature of the hotel - Summer Barbeques are a specialty!Many of the bedrooms at this luxurious hotel afford stunning views over the river and old town area.The hotel is within a five minute walk of Athlone’s train & bus station. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Radisson Blu Hotel, Athlone Hotel Athlone
- Radisson Athlone
- Radisson Hotel Athlone
- Athlone Radisson Sas