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“Outstanding Experience”

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Inis Meain Restaurant & Suites
Ranked #1 of 4 Inishmann B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Somerville, MA
Level Contributor
39 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Outstanding Experience”
Reviewed 7 June 2013 via mobile

I enjoyed a Fri and Sat night stay. Strongly advise to take the first ferry on Friday (depart Rosaveel 10:30 am) and depart last ferry on Sunday (departs island 4:30 pm). Arrived on Inis Meain approx 11:45 am. Owner met us on the dock and drove us to the hotel. Only four suites in the whole hotel. Beautiful horizontal architecture that blends with the environment. Provided: bikes, binoculars, fishing poles, maps and advice where to walk. Breakfast every morning brought to your room. And a delicious light lunch packed to go in a daypack ( rucksack) - delicious soup in a thermos and tasty flat bread. If you arrive on the first ferry and depart on the last, you get lunch on Friday AND Saturday AND Sunday.
The hotel is spotless, meals delicious (dinner just a bit pricey, but not outrageously so). The island is walkable. Walked for miles over easy paths and coastal terrain. Undescribable beauty - and quiet! Have not experienced such quiet in years. You can hear the cows munching on the grass. Attended Mass (in Irish) on Sunday morning, and I'm not particularly religious. The entire overall experience (the Inn + the island) - magical.

  • Stayed May 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Brigit-Saule
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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143 reviews from our community

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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (27)
Date | Rating
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English first
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 June 2013

Everything about this hotel is original, and designed to make you relax, slow down, and escape the fast pace of modern life for a while. Inis Meain Restaurant and Suites is just that: four suites attached to a restaurant. There's no lobby. No reception. What you have instead is a lovely warm welcome from the owner Marie-Therese, amazing food from her chief husband, Ruairi, who also oversaw the construction of the place, and ever helpful service with humour and laughter from Sal, the manager. The design of IMR&S is original in every respect. The rooms are simply stunning. The website promises a 180 degree view and what a view! Of Galway bay and the mountains of Connemara beyond! So much thought has been put into this place. Guests are given bikes, walking sticks and fishing rods. For lunch, you get a backpack with a hearty broth and flat bread. And very encouraging advice about walks on the island. In other words, every incentive to get out in the fresh air and explore this pre-historical remote island, once inhabited by the fierce-some Fir Bolg of Irish legend (they left behind two forts on this island). To start you off each day, a box of treats is dropped out with treats for breakfast - yougurt, fresh fruit, apple juice, boiled eggs, fresh bread, jams and butter. And also wee chocolate puds for elevensess. You almost feel like you are in the Hobbit! Your room is also superbly stocked with wines, champagne, etc. Perfect for an aperitif, to relax and enjoy the incredible view. The philosophy in the restaurant is consistent with the whole experience. The best ingredients prepared to bring out flavours - delicious fresh caught lobster and the best Irish beef steak. We visited Inis Meain with our 11 year old. This place is so obviously designed for couples. What impressed me hugely was how welcoming all were for a small family. It was just the most delightful and unforgettable experience.

  • Stayed May 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank TheoFarrell
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Boston
Level Contributor
10 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 June 2013

I stumbled across this unique island establishment online, and am so glad I visited. Having grown up hearing stories about County Galway from my Irish parent, I was eager to experience the beauty of this region for myself. The island of Inis Meain was everything i could have possibly hoped for and more: lovely hikes through fields, miles of beautiful stone walls, incredible vistas, beaches, cliffs, ancient stone forts, horses, cows, birds, flowers. we were blessed with hot sunny weather our entire visit. The people of Inis Meain are a bit quieter than the mainland people we have encountered, but very friendly nonetheless, and we felt truly welcome everywhere we went. If you are traveling through Ireland car free, and want to find good hiking and be out in nature, this is the place! Accessible by ferry (via shuttle bus from Galway).

Ruari and Marie Therese have created a unique place and experience for their guests. We were well cared for in every way, and enjoyed meeting fellow guests. If "I" and "S" from the UK are reading this, thanks again for that pint! Ruari is a wonderful chef, and I particularly enjoyed the hearty soups he prepared. Marie Therese can rustle up some good home baked cookies! I thank them, their staff, and their neighbors for the wonderful hospitality we received.

Room Tip: We stayed in Suite 1 for a two night mid week stay. Our room was directly beside the restaurant, and...
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  • Stayed June 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank PatchesBoston
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Dublin
Level Contributor
7 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 8 May 2013

Inis Meain is so good you almost don't want to tell anyone else. The rooms are understated luxury, the best kind. The experience is completely unique, choreographed by a wonderful couple who bring their world experience to a magical corner of the earth. The food is local, simple and incredibly delicious. A stay at Inis Meain is a treat beyond belief and good for the soul.

  • Stayed August 2012
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Loveniceholidays
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cork, Ireland
Level Contributor
24 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 May 2013 via mobile

Approaching off the ferry through a raw landscape of stone, sea and sun, a cutting edge building houses a very comfortable suite with panoramic views. A thoughtfully stocked fridge and equally well considered selection of books complement the scene. No phone and no tv are essentially appropriate, not missed at all. The food in the restaurant is superb, locally sourced and cooked simply and with respect for the ingredients. A technical excellence underpins a delicate simplicity of dishes.

Highly recommended if you really want to chill out away from it all.

Stayed April 2013, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
1 Thank HighStandards24
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cork
Level Contributor
32 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 April 2013

I visited the Inis Meain suites and restaurants last may with my wife - I haven't bothered with Tripadvisor for a while, but if any place that I have been to in the last year - even over the last decade -deserves an excellent review then this is it.
There were so many memorable aspects of our trip. The island location gave the place a separateness that makes it special to start off - we flew across and the weather was beautiful. The plane didn't get too far off the ground or water at any stage, which is not for nervous fliers, but it kind of puts you into a retro frame of mind before you even get to the island - the scenery is spectacular and in 10 minutes you're there with a coach waiting to ferry you to the suites.
The whole island is spectacular, particularly the coastal loop around the south of the island - there is no path, you just find your own way after the road ends. The entire island is covered in intricate dry stone walls of flat limestone enclosing tiny fields, but there are no walls between the cliffs or seashore for a distance of about 100-200 yards in from the shore. The landscape is primordial - you really believe this piece of the earth has looked the same for the last 5000 years or so. The colours of the rocks, the sky, the stones, the shells, the water, the lichens are incredible. It took about 4-5 hours to amble round the southern half of the island and it was a fantastic experience. We saw nobody else, the place was astounding and I could not recommend it highly enough - one of the best things I have done in my life.
The only warning is that this is weather dependent and we had a beautiful sunny day, which cannot always be guaranteed in this part of the world. Also the beach at the north of the island behind the airfield with the swooping terns was deserted and also spectacular. We didn't get too far on to it as we were being warned off by the birds, so we kept as clear of them as we could. The bikes from the suites were great - cube mountain bikes from memory - and that kind of represented the inis meain suites to me. When they do something even if its leaving bikes for you to explore quite a small island - they do it fantastically well. My grandmother could have cycled up a vertical slope on one of these things. Even the part that initially annoyed me about this place turned out to be a good thing. The requirement was that you had to book a 2 night stay - we have 2 small kids (2 and 4 at the time), so it is a big deal to farm them out for 2 days, but it was worth it and the trip would not have been half as good if we did not have at least one full day to explore the island.
The suites themselves fit into the landscape beautifully and architecturally feel perfect. There is loads of room with a full length window looking out to sea. Lying on the beds (v comfortable) looking out you see the sky, raise your head onto the pillow you see the twelve bens in connemara, then sit up and you see the sweep of the sea across to connemara up to the mountains and the sky above framing the picture - one of the most beautiful views in ireland and a fantastic way to wake up and meet the day.
In the morning a box is left at your door with a natural breakfast with muesli, a terrine from the restaurant, fuit, yogurt, rollmop herrings, and coffee - this is not a hotel with a bar and cooked breakfast where you sit and chat and look at people, its different and very cool. It all makes you think you might be in a scandinavian nirvana operated by perfectly boring aesthetes. Not true. The owners and operators (they seem to do almost everything themselves) Ruairi and Marie Therese are as grounded as you could get. Both are very nice and charming, fundamentally sound people doing what they do extremely well, to a standard of excellence you don't often get in Ireland.
The reason we went here was we read a great review of the restaurant in the FT. It lived up to the hype. A short menu with some lovely wines and not too expensive, but again everything on the menu that I tasted was excellent. The scallops with grated carrots and I think ginger and sesame with potatoes were quite simply one of the nicest dishes I have ever eaten. I had lobster the first night which was also good, I was not so keen on the sauce with the lobster (brandy suace from memory), the crab meat salad starter was so good the first night I had it again the second evening. Before any courses hit the table, we had a dish of periwinkles to get through in their shells. I'm salivating now at the memories.
The pub was about 10 minutes walk up the road - irish spoken - with great pints of guinness and a nice warm fire.
This is a place that every person who appreciates fine food, rugged beauty and the outdoors should visit at least once in their lives.
We will be back.

Room Tip: all rooms are the same - one is a larger suite, so there should be no difference.
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  • Stayed May 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank MaroonedinCork
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Dublin, Ireland
Level Contributor
50 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 April 2013 via mobile

Third visit. It just gets better. Attention to detail is everywhere. Relaxed ease with the service. Insights and experiences are authentic to the island, the food , preparation and sights making the stay so memorable.

First class bikes to tour on are provided, packed lunch delicious. You end up trusting them on recommendations and choices. Ruairi is updating the landscaping with his unique aesthetic that is loyal to the location and property.

Lobster, monkfish exceptional. Wine recommendations hit the spot. Breakfast choices refreshingly new. No trad irish fare, focus is on taste and combinations delivered on the best breakfast tray we have had.

Our daughters taste was accommodated with no fuss age seven. Barry, Salog and the de Blacams were considerate warm hosts. Ruairi picked us up and dropped us to the airstrip.everything taken care of with ease and help was everywhere.

Treat yourself to this perfect respite. You will be refreshed and inspired.

Stayed March 2013, travelled with family
Helpful?
Thank john h
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Inis Meain Restaurant & Suites

Property: Inis Meain Restaurant & Suites
Address: Inis Meain, Province of Connacht, Ireland
Region: Ireland > Western Ireland > Province of Connacht > County Galway > Aran Islands > Inishmann
Amenities:
Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 4 B&Bs / Inns in Inishmann
Number of rooms: 5
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Inis Meain is one of the Aran Islands, 15 miles off the west coast of Ireland. It is just 3 miles across and supports 160 inhabitants. Ruairi & Marie-Therese de Blacam created Inis Meain Restaurant & Suites to enhance visitor's appreciation of the island by providing a style of accommodation and dining that is complimentary to the location. The suites are simple and understated in styling, with ample space and views. The restaurant serves mainly island-sourced food. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Inis Meain Restaurant And Suites
Inis Meain Restaurant Hotel Inishmann
Inis Meain Restaurant & Suites Ireland/Aran Islands

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