Yes, you can (and yes, you should!) have a drink (or four) in the Temple Bar neighborhood, where travelers, tourists, and locals alike have been flocking in search of dark stouts and late-night entertainment for centuries. Yes, you should visit the Guinness Brewery and take a tour of the Jameson Distillery Bow St., and of course, there’s plenty of classic Irish pub grub to try.
But save time to visit the wondrous library at Trinity College, stroll through the famous Christ Church Cathedral, and enjoy the delights of public parks like St Stephen’s Green. You can delve into history at Dublin Castle, learn about the Irish diaspora with a trip to the Irish Emigration Museum, and take day trips to see the area’s spectacular cliffs, mountains, and coastal scenery.
Dublin has so much to offer, and we know that you’re going to love uncovering all of the city’s hidden sights and attractions. We also know that you’re going to appreciate the wonderful range of luxury hotels and boutique bed and breakfasts in the Irish capital, so keep reading to learn about the best areas to stay in Dublin.
Don’t forget to check out our web story: The 12 Best Boutique Hotels in Dublin
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Where to stay in Dublin
Dublin is a city that’s full of character, and every suburb, neighborhood, and different area of the Irish capital has its own distinct flavor, style, community, and atmosphere. For first-time travelers, that makes this a difficult city to visit because you’re going to want to stay everywhere!
If it’s your first time visiting Dublin, then we recommend staying in the most central area. The most popular places to stay in Dublin are found around the old quarter – a place that’s better known as Temple Bar. This area is packed with heritage, and you’ll find plenty of Georgian townhouses and historic pubs that have been enticing travelers for centuries.
But be warned, parts of Temple Bar are also notorious for their late-night entertainment. This is where the pub-crawls unfold and where partygoers flock, so if you’re not down for a wild night out in Dublin, make sure you pick a boutique hotel that’s set a few rows back from the main pub street in Temple Bar.
To the south of Temple Bar, you’ll find St Stephen’s Green. Around this famous public park, there are quiet streets packed with Georgian-era homes and buildings, many of which are now luxury boutique hotels offering beautiful but laid-back stays in Dublin.
Head north of the river, and you’ll find up-and-coming neighborhoods like Smithfield, where street art is found on every corner and where repurposing is at the top of the agenda. Go east, toward the coast, and you’ll find a similar story in the regenerated Docklands, although the hotels here are much more high-end than in Smithfield.
Wherever you turn in the Irish capital, you’ll find excellent accommodation options to keep you comfy during your stay in the city. So keep reading to find out the best places to stay in Dublin!
The 12 Best Boutique Hotels in Dublin
1. The Marker
You’ll love the architectural style of The Marker, a modern, luxurious, and downright stylish hotel that’s quickly become a landmark on the Dublin skyline. The hotel embraces old and new because the futuristic checkerboard facade overlooks the regenerated Docklands of Grand Canal Square, where you’ll find history, heritage, and plenty of swanky cafes, bars, and restaurants.
The 5-star, luxury rooms at The Marker really are a marker of excellence in Dublin. Plus, you’ll love how the plush purple, yellow, and white hues of the furnishings are both contemporary and comfortable. The best rooms offer waterfront views, while all rooms and suites have marbled bathrooms that feature marvelous Villeroy & Boch bathtubs!
You can relax in your marbled bathtub, or better yet, book a session at the hotel’s spa, where you’ll find a unique eucalyptus-infused steam room alongside a sauna and whirlpool Jacuzzi. Work out in the gym or swim a few laps in the infinity pool. After that, get ready for breathtaking, 360-degree views over Dublin from The Rooftop Bar & Terrace.
You can order cocktails and sharing boards on the rooftop, but the real fine dining experience awaits you in The Brasserie. Serving breakfast, lunch, and dinner, The Brasserie offers Irish steaks, fresh seafood from the Irish Sea, and decadent desserts, such as Lemon Polenta Cake and Pumpkin & Orange Cheesecake. Top off the evening with a nightcap at The Marker Bar, where you can order G&Ts and Espresso Martinis late into the night.
Marble bathrooms and a two Michelin-starred restaurant make The Merrion Hotel one of the best boutique hotels in Dublin. This is without a doubt one of our top picks in the Irish capital, and we know that you’re going to adore the Georgian decor, Georgian design, and Georgian history of this luxury Dublin hotel.
If you hadn’t guessed, The Merrion Hotel is located within a beautiful Georgian-era building that’s found right in the heart of central Dublin. Dating back to the 1760s, the hotel’s Georgian structure hides two gorgeous gardens that are designed in a classic 18th-century style. In fact, they wouldn’t be out of place in an episode of Downton Abbey!
You’ll be living the aristocratic Dublin lifestyle in your luxury hotel room, where you’ll find vaulted ceilings and grand marble fireplaces. The furnishings are all carefully selected, but while Georgian in character, they provide you with the height of modern comfort.
The hotel’s spa is very much rooted in the present, although the indoor swimming pool is designed to emulate the Roman baths of centuries long past. You’ll appreciate the ESPA products, personal training sessions, and the unusual but revitalizing Biological Recherche treatments available.
For foodies, the real highlight of a stay at The Merrion Hotel is a dining experience at Restaurant Patrick Guilbaud, which has been awarded two Michelin stars! The 8-course tasting menu is always a “surprise menu,” but rest assured, you’re going to be in very capable culinary hands.
The Westbury Hotel is one of the coolest boutique hotels in Dublin. Book a room at The Westbury Hotel, and you’ll be enjoying the refined luxury of one of the city’s most glamorous accommodation offerings.
The rooms are understated yet colorful and simple yet superbly comfortable. Cream decor contrasts wonderfully with bright pillowcases and plush pillow-top beds, while the marble bathrooms allow you to live in the lap of luxury.
The culinary choices on offer at The Westbury are sure to impress, and you can’t miss out on the popular tradition of an Afternoon Tea on the terrace. The hotel’s signature bar is The Sidecar, an award-winning cocktail bar where handpicked craft spirits are mixed with an unusual array of ingredients to create an innovative drinks menu. The Captain’s Order includes wine, gin, aquafaba, and vanilla syrup, while Rudolph’s Regret features Irish whiskey, Scotch whisky, Chambord, and lots of cherries.
Test out the cocktail list, then try out the dinner menu at the hotel’s WILDE restaurant, where seasonal Irish produce is served in traditional surroundings. The restaurant has a Wild Game and Wild Wine menu, where Irish pheasant and venison are expertly paired with Cab Savs and Bordeaux reds. The main a la carte menu features fresh fish, fresh steaks, and fresh yet filling salads that will entice you to make a reservation for the next evening, too!
Another one of the coolest hotels in Dublin is The Hendrick Smithfield, where you’re greeted by an effortless red brick facade and post-industrial chic interiors in one of the city’s up-and-coming suburbs. The Hendrick Smithfield likes to see itself as an edgy, post-modernist hotel, and we think you’ll agree with that sentiment when you stay here.
The Smithfield area is known for its street art, and inside the hotel, you’ll find lots of modern art and unique photography on display across the lobby and corridors and in the rooms. The stylish Hendrick Bar is a work of art in itself. You can pick up a barista-made flat white on your way into the city or relax in the evening with cocktails and beers.
You’ll love how the modern, edgy styles continue in the simple yet ergonomically designed hotel rooms. You can sink back into the super-soft King Koil mattresses and feel the raw power of the intense Power & Soul shower in the bathroom. Rooms at The Hendrick Smithfield have sleek wood floors, contrasting color schemes, and all the functional amenities you could need on vacation.
If you’re looking for boutique, then you’ll find it at the Dylan. Set on the outskirts of the city center, this is one of the most stylish and most popular hotels in Dublin. You’ll soon see why when you stroll through the historic entrance of this former Victorian-era nurse’s home.
There are 72 superbly comfortable rooms at the Dylan, and while the layouts, windows, and architectural styles are all very Victorian, the amenities, decor, and furnishings are seriously contemporary. Memory foam mattresses provide you with an effortless night’s sleep, while underfloor heating and Italian marble keep the bathrooms both practical and stylish.
You’ll find equally plush furnishings in the busy yet relaxed surroundings of the Dylan Bar, where it’s far too easy to spend all day ordering pastries, coffees, or cocktails from the unique, walnut-paneled bar.
Save space for lunch or dinner at The Eddison Restaurant, where seasonal Irish produce is always available. The menu is classic, featuring favorites such as fish and chips, turkey sandwiches, pork belly, and Irish steak, but you can count on only the freshest local ingredients being cooked in the kitchen.
6. Number 31
Number 31 is as understated a hotel as the non-descript name suggests, but we know that you’re going to love this boutique hotel’s unique sense of effortlessness when you’re staying in Dublin.
You’ll be staying in a renovated townhouse in a quiet neighborhood in the suburbs of Dublin. You might not even notice the hotel from the outside because the facade blends seamlessly with the surrounding residential homes.
This is one of our favorite boutique hotels in Dublin, and that’s because every single room at Number 31 has been individually styled and designed in order to create a unique, homey character.
The Plush Rooms are luxe but minimalist. You’d be forgiven for thinking that you’re staying at a friend’s house – if your friends put you up in luxury hotel rooms, that is! The Family Room, though, is also known as the Jazz Room, and it’s styled with bright pink décor and over-the-top jazzy furnishings.
Breakfast is served every morning in the communal conservatory, where you’ll be treated to a home-cooked feast of kippers (cured herring), eggs benedict, salmon, and mushroom frittatas. If you’re looking for a home away from home, you won’t find a more homey hotel than Number 31.
The Hard Rock Hotel needs very little introduction. If you’re looking to stay right in the heart of Dublin’s tourist action, then this is the place for you.
Dublin’s Hard Rock Hotel is located in Temple Bar, the famous (or infamous) heritage and entertainment district, where you’ll find Irish bars serving drinks until the early hours of the morning.
The Hard Rock Hotel draws heavily on this tradition of Irish hospitality, though. You’ll love the warm, welcoming lobby that’s colorful and homey, but at the same time, offers subtle glimpses of the rock star lifestyle.
Check into your room, and you’ll find the decor to be just as colorful. Plus, you’ll find all the classic features of a Hard Rock hotel waiting for you. Sink back into the signature “Sleep Like a Rock” bed linens, control the lighting, television, and soundtrack of the room from your mobile phone, and enjoy the rock star memorabilia and artwork hanging on the walls.
Temple Bar is just a short stroll away from the Hard Rock Hotel, but make sure you sample the food and drink at the hotel’s in-house restaurant. Zampas Bar and Restaurant is quite unlike the other pubs around because this unique restaurant serves up Peruvian dishes cooked with local ingredients.
Peru is the home of the potato, of course, and this Irish favorite is taken right back to its South American roots by the chefs at Zampas, who use homegrown heirloom potatoes in the kitchen. Order up Pisco Sours (or a Guinness) and then enjoy fresh ceviche, Irish steak, or chicken asado in one of Dublin’s best fusion restaurants.
If it’s history and heritage you crave, then The Merchant House is one of the best boutique hotels in Dublin. As the name suggests, this unique property was built by rich merchants in the 1700s. Plus, the restored building is found in Dublin’s old quarter, right in the heart of Temple Bar.
This Georgian-era hotel has just four suites, so book early if you’re looking to stay here. Although the room numbers are limited, the suites don’t lack character. Each of the four bedrooms is luxurious in terms of furnishings and decor, and each of the bedrooms is named after a famous character from Irish literary history.
The W. B. Yeats Suite and the James Joyce Suite both feature antique fireplaces and have room for at least three people to sleep. The Oscar Wilde Suite also has a unique fireplace, but with just one bed, it’s intended for traveling couples and literary romantics. The fourth and final option is the Bram Stoker Room, a compact but equally luxurious bedroom inspired by the author of Dracula.
Step out of The Merchant House, and you’ll be in the center of the action, with the pubs and bars of Temple Bar just steps away and the best museums and attractions of central Dublin all within easy walking distance.
9. The Wilder
Enjoy a low-key stay in Dublin when you book a luxury room at The Wilder, a converted townhouse that’s hidden away on a quiet street just a short stroll away from the leafy surroundings of St Stephen’s Green.
The Wilder might be low-key on the outside, but head past the red brick residential façade, and you’ll find one of the best boutique hotels in Dublin. The townhouse itself dates back to the Victorian period, and much of its 19th-century character has been retained in the contemporary upgrades that have brought the hotel into the 21st century.
Rooms at The Wilder feature Victorian sash windows, high vaulted ceilings, and gorgeous beds and bathrooms decked out with luxury linens and toiletries. Standard rooms have refreshing rainforest showers, but upgrade to a suite, and you can enjoy the pleasure of bathing in a freestanding bathtub!
You’ll absolutely love the guests-only Gin and Tea rooms at the Wilder, where you’ll have an exceptional choice of craft gins and craft tonics on the menu. The Tea Room serves up a selection of cheese and charcuterie boards, while the hotel’s staff are going to be more than happy to suggest the best restaurants nearby if you’re looking for an evening meal out on the town.
If you’re hoping to escape the city center, then book a few nights at the Clayton Hotel Ballsbridge, where you’ll be staying in the beautiful surroundings of a repurposed 19th-century schoolhouse.
Rooms at the Clayton Hotel are simple but luxuriously refined. You’ll love the fluffy, plush bed linens, and you’ll appreciate the luxury-branded toiletries in the minimalist bathrooms. The hotel has a gym and fitness center, but if you’re on vacation, you might prefer to check out the Grandstand Bar, where you can relax on comfortable lounge chairs and order drinks from the G&T Factory.
You can start your day with a Vitality Breakfast, where the hotel’s signature morning menu features healthy items such as fresh fruit, muesli, and smoothie shots. Alternately, you can start the day with a full Irish fry-up. The Grandstand Restaurant serves lunch and dinner, where you can keep things traditional with the hotel’s famous carvery roast dinner and a cold pint of Guinness.
Central location? Check. An indoor swimming pool? Check. Contemporary charm and boutique luxury? Double check. The Camden Court Hotel is guaranteed to tick all of your boxes and plenty more boxes you didn’t even know needed ticking!
You’ll be greeted at the entrance to the Camden Court Hotel by a hanging garden of lush plants, greenery, and colorful flowers. Rooms are modern and stylishly designed with floral patterns and bright colors, while the rest of the hotel is equally as bright in decor.
Work up an appetite in the fitness center, swimming pool, sauna, and steam room, because the dining options at Camden Court are seemingly endless! You can enjoy a Full Irish breakfast, a light lunch in the Lobby and Mezzanine area, and then dine at the hotel’s Iveagh Restaurant for dinner. The hotel is also next to Camden Yard, where you can enjoy outdoor barbecues and beers throughout the year.
This four-star luxury hotel is just a short walk from St Stephen’s Green, but if you’re looking for nightlife rather than gardens, Temple Bar is just 15 minutes away on foot.
One of the coolest hotels in Dublin is actually a hostel, but it’s surprisingly boutique in character. You don’t need to book a bed in a dormitory at Jacob’s Inn Hostel (although if you’re on a budget, then why not?), because the best rooms at this hostel are as luxurious as any other boutique hotel in the city.
Private rooms are super spacious, with bright and modern decor, soft bed linens, handy work desks, and private en-suite bathrooms. It’s a great option if you’re looking for privacy but still want to socialize because the hostel puts on events every day of the week.
The daily walking tours are totally free of charge, while the hostel’s pub crawl is somewhat legendary in backpacking circles. There’s bottomless coffee, juice, and porridge for breakfast, while the rooftop bar has some of the most outstanding views in Dublin!
That completes our list of the 12 best Dublin hotels! Did we miss any cool boutique hotels in Dublin? Comment below so we can add them to the list!
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