We bought a two night stay with the hotel based on an offer we saw on Grabone. I had emailed ahead of time to let the hotel know that this was a special weekend for us and if possible could we check in early and have a nice room with a view over the river. I received a helpful email reply to confirm we could check in an hour earlier that normal checking time (so 3pm instead of 4pm) and also that they would get us a room with a view of the river. We arrived about lunchtime and thought we'd chance our arms to see if our room was ready it was and they checked us in straight away. However, on arrival the girl at reception told us we could pay an extra 10 euro per person per night for a room in the new part of the hotel. This rang alarm bells straight away - we were wondering why we wouldn't automatically have a room in the revamped part of the hotel but I said we would take a look at the room they'd given us and see. When we got into the room we were disappointed. The room reminded us of something out of Faulty Towers with a small double bed that bowed in the middle and mustard bed covers and old dated decor and furnishings. The window was small and the view straight out the window was half wall and back of other rooms and half of the river. We decided to go back down to reception to pay the extra for an upgrade to the new part of the hotel. After paying 40 euro for the upgrade we were told because there was a wedding on there were no rooms left in the new part of the hotel but that they would put us in a 'newer' room in the old part of the hotel (but we still had to pay 40 euro for the privilege) - this, as you can imagine, started our stay with a bit of a bad taste in our mouths. The room that we were 'upgraded' too was just ok. It had a very small high up window and didn't have a bath - the rest of it was fine. We put the menu for breakfast to be delivered to our room on our door with a selection of what we'd like delivered the next morning. Unfortunately by 10.15am there was no word of breakfast being delivered and we knew that breakfast stopped being served at 10am. I check the door to find our order was still hanging on the door and hadn't been collected the night before. I rang down to reception to let them know that our order hadn't been taken and we were still waiting for our breakfast - the girl on the phone assured me she'd have someone up right away to take the order and have breakfast delivered. After half an hour there was still no word of anyone coming to take the order hanging on the door so I rang down again and got a different girl on reception who had no idea that we were waiting for our breakfast and said she'd just send breakfast straight up. Another half an hour later (11.15am now!) we had a cold irish breakfast delivered which was like rubber and I suspect was what had been left over from the breakfast in the dining room. There was none of the cereal, fruit, juices, coffee or even ketchup with the breakfast that we had ordered. Disappointed wasn't the word. We called down again to ask for coffee at least to be brought up and another 20 minutes later coffee and ketchup arrived by which time the breakfast was barely edible. When we go away having breakfast in bed is one of our favourite treats so we were left really let down by this and our whole day was thrown off because we didn't get to do all we had planned while waiting on breakfast. We opted to go down for breakfast the next morning and it was very pleasant and the girl waiting on the tables was very attentive. We didn't eat dinner in the hotel either night as it was very busy down in the lobby and bar with very big weddings both days so we cant comment on dinner served. On the Saturday night the wedding which was going on down below had very loud music which kept us awake until the early hours. On the up side - the staff were incredibly friendly and helpful and the downstairs lobby area with an open fire and bar is very pleasant. We used the pool quite a bit and apart from the many signs with rules and instructions that was one of the positives of our stay - infact we asked the girl at reception if we could go for another swim after checking out and she was more than helpful and accommodating. Ballybofey itself is a sleepy little village so there wasn't loads going on when we were there. We left with mixed feelings about the hotel but ultimately were disappointed and don't know that I'd recommend the hotel to friends.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Nestled in the bustling town of Ballybofey, Jacksons Hotel is an award-winning Hotel on the banks of the River Finn and Drumboe Woods. Renowned for its hospitality and great food, Jacksons is the ideal base for touring Donegal and the North West of Ireland. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Jacksons Hotel Ballybofey
- Jackson's Hotel Ballybofey, County Donegal