As I regularly frequent Co. Clare and Co. Galway I have heard of the G Hotel for many years and have always heard of how fancy it was…. therefor I have wanted to go for a long time and as my partner is a professor in NUIG, we decided on this particular Wednesday that we would go down for the night and stay at the G Hotel.
My Adventures At The G Hotel
W arrived just after 3pm and checked in. Luckily for me, I am not a professor in NUIG so I did not have to leave to go and teach a class, instead after getting our stuff set up in our room I headed to the spa for an hour, but to be honest for what ever reason I wasn’t really feeling it. So I left after about 25 minutes most of which I spent in the steam room, I love steam rooms, I always find they particularly work wonders for my skin. I actually had a bit of work to do on my computer so I spent an hour or so working away from the comfort of my very divine room in the G, then I had a shower and got ready for dinner with my guy. We had whom I can only describe as one of the nicest waitresses I have ever come across, Dee was her name who was very helpful to me when it came to ordering some vegan dinner. That’s one of the main things the G Hotel can be be proud over, is their staff, all of whom I found to be very helpful and so friendly. After dinner, both of us actually still had some work to do, so we worked for a further hour or so and then went to sleep.
The next morning I woke up at about 8.30pm, got dressed for the gym and done a 40 minute workout, which was great as on Thursday morning at this time no one else was there and I had a nice private gym to myself where I blasted Eminem out. After that I done a quick tour of the hotel. Then went back to the room and got changed for breakfast with Oisín. Breakfast got delayed slightly as I tried to organise some vegan breakfast, which is not on the menu, I will talk about this below, but unfortunately the G Hotel really needs to work on their vegan options as on all three menus that I saw, bar some sides of vegetables and chips there was only ONE thing on all the menus that was suitable for vegans, which was disappointing. But the saving grace here was again the staff, who not only helped resolve the issue and due to the delay apologised and gave us a picnic to take home with us in the car, which was a lovely touch.
We had a nice stay here and found it handy for the night that it was in it, but apart from the staff, the room and some of the hotel decor, I didn’t really find anything too inciting that would make me want to come back quick.
Looking at the G Hotel from the outside, it’s not that pretty, but when you walk into the reception, you are greeted by an ultra funky black quartz room (it looks amazing) with white furniture at the desk. The interior through out the hotel is great and definitely something that may be hard to find else where. The hotel was designed by Philip Tracey and definitely has a cool funky look and vibe to it. Most of the rooms have a common colourful theme throughout and the reception is totally different. Every main room and dining room are designed differently and decorated differently. There is not much to say about the outside area, because it is (almost) in the city there isn’t really any outside area. But there are beautiful views from the front of the hotel of Lough Atalia, which was nice to wake up to.
The bedrooms are amazing!! The bathroom in our room, we both agreed is the type of bathroom we would like in our future house a few years down the line. With ‘his and hers’ sinks and ‘his and hers’ showers, a hugely spacious bath and a tv in the wall just above. The other thing that we loved about this hotel in our room was in the sitting area, there was a fire….a freaking fire!! Unfortunately we couldn’t put it on as the hotel had left a note to say it needed to be fixed. The bed was huge, a king size and our window went all the way down the side of the room, bringing in plenty of natural light and lots of views of Lough Atalia.
The spa was actually a bit of a let down. Yes the thermal suite is very relaxing and nice to look at, but to use the thermal suite, you need to book an allocated time (an hour) so you can’t just come and go as you please. I don’t know if the reason for this is to make it more private and intimate, which would definitely work well for private parties or hen parties OR if the reason is because the area isn’t too big, with only six (or less) bed to lay on. For the average Joe, just trying to pamper themselves make sure to book in to use the spa and pick the right time for you. The next thing that I found odd about the spa, was that it is not included in the quite expensive price you are already paying for you room, it comes at an extra cost for the hour that you spend……… In all the hotels I have stayed in, this is the first time I had to pay to use the thermal facilities while staying the night. The changing rooms I also didn’t think were anything to special. The decor is nice and relaxing and the thermal rooms were great, in the sauna they had a star lighting effect which will dim every few minutes which is also quite relaxing. But over all….. the spa didn’t do it for me.
Speaking as a vegan in 2017, the food was a huge let down. Literally on three different menus there was ONE thing that was vegan friendly…….just to clarify that again – on THREE different menus, there was ONE vegan friendly meal choice. As I said above the staff are top notch and very helpful. The food menu has nothing to do with the waitresses and waiters, whom I am sure have no say, but it definitely is something that the management need to look at and address. On the breakfast menu there is a section specifically dedicated to vegetarians, which is great, but on that menu bar the porridge which is made with milk, everything else are egg or made with egg and I know you are saying “Well Saoirse, why not just take the egg out??”, that is hard to do when the egg is the main focus. I tried to order a vegan breakfast of spinach, mushrooms, potatoes and tomato, but there was some confusion in the kitchen which delayed our breakfast by almost 30-40 minutes, everyone else had left and we were the last two people sitting waiting to eat, with check out getting closer and closer. A lovely female manager then came out and apologised profoundly for the delay and confusion and gave us two bags full of treats and snacks to take as a picnic on our way home, which was a lovely touch. When the food came out, I have to say it was delicious. The last thing I will say on the food is that it is very expensive. I thought a three course meal was included in our stay, it was not and for one rock sandy (non alcoholic) and two desserts it cost €25 …….. my dessert consisted of vanilla sorbé and Oisín had a small selection of some of the desserts. The dinner portion sizes were small, luckily we ordered a side portion of chips as we would of been hungry otherwise.
All in all the food was a bit of a let down and vegan dishes are definitely something the management needs to work on. What I took away however, is that in a bad situation, great staff like the G Hotel have, can really save the day and still help to make the experience more enjoyable.
I just don’t think it is worth the expensive price tag that comes with it, especially when you add on some of the extra costs you might incur (like the spa or food bills). The staff are the best thing about the hotel and the funky decor is second.