Travel: 24-Hour Room Service - The Clarence, Dublin

GEORGIAN SQUARES, elegant arcades, quaint winding lanes: Dublin is extraordinarily picturesque. However, the Clarence is located on none of the above. In fact, when you approach it, the hotel looks unpromising, on a dusty, busy road, beside an unphotogenic stretch of the river Liffey. The building is austere by any standards and, when you go into reception, the wood panelling gives things a boarding-school feel. But once you're checked in, check out the beautiful design details that the new owners created in 1996 and let a warm glow settle over you.

The bedrooms are peaceful and perfect for a weekend bolthole, but it's in the communal rooms that the Clarence shines. The Octagon Bar is ideal for that first Guinness, the Study for a fireside reading session. The oddly named Tea Room is a cavernous restaurant, but after the wine's started flowing and fantastic huge portions of hearty Irish food has been consumed, it suddenly feels quite cosy.

The Clarence manages that tricky combination, calm and cool, and it would be impossible to talk about the hotel without mentioning one of its owners, Bono of U2. The Clarence has true rock'n'roll credentials, and the penthouse suite is ideal for recovering superstars, with a piano, a rooftop Jacuzzi, cream suede sofas and an awesome bed. The staff are fantastically discreet so no, they won't tell you everyone famous who's stayed there, but anyone with taste probably has.

LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION

The Clarence is at 6-8 Wellington Quay, Dublin 2, Ireland (tel: 00 353 1670 9000, fax: 353 1670 7800)

Transport: Dublin is mostly walkable, and the Clarence is well placed for the sights. If you're infirm or can't be bothered to walk, taxis are a better bet than the (very crowded) buses.

Time to airport: About 40 minutes, and there are plenty of taxis available.

ARE YOU LYING COMFORTABLY?

An haute couture version of a padded cell, the rooms are plain and simple, with cream walls and heavy curtains. The ecclesiastical theme is pushed with deep crimson furnishings and monk's-cell-like lights. The sinning's up to you. And, the penthouse suite is possibly the grooviest in Europe.

Beds: Deep and crisp and even, with lots of fluffy pillows, perfect for lazing in until at least midday. Very unmonastic.

Freebies: All the usual luxury unguents in the bathroom, with those cute towelling slippers that surely are meant to be taken home (the idea of recycling them is too, well, unhygienic).

Temperature: As you like, and unlike its New York "design" equivalents, in this hotel you can open the windows (some give on to tiny balconies).

Bathroom: The bathroom has his'n'hers basins and a very flattering mirror. Relax in the bath or get blasted by the power-shower instead.

KEEPING IN TOUCH

TV: Yes, and it has the full range of channels you never watch at home but suddenly find compelling in a hotel (CNN, Discovery...).

Radio: Yes, but if you're in the penthouse, a state-of-the-art hi-fi system awaits, with a hip selection of CDs.

Phone/fax/Internet: Hey, politicians hold press conferences on the roof. It's safe to say they are well equipped, technowise.

THE BOTTOM LINE

A "superior" (ie standard) room is Irpounds 180 (pounds 151) per night; a two-bedroomed suite is Irpounds 550 (pounds 462). The penthouse suite is Irpounds 1,450 (pounds 1,218), but a small pop combo could fit in it. Full Irish breakfast is Irpounds 14 (pounds 12) per person, and you'll be too full to eat for several hours after that. Dinner for two with wine in the Tea Room costs about Irpounds 60 (pounds 50).

Suggested Topics
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment

ebooksNow available in paperback
Arts and Entertainment

ebooks
Arts and Entertainment

film
Arts and Entertainment
Chvrches lead singer Lauren Mayberry in the band's new video 'Leave a Trace'

music
Arts and Entertainment

music
Arts and Entertainment
Home on the raunch: George Bisset (Aneurin Barnard), Lady Seymour Worsley (Natalie Dormer) and Richard Worsley (Shaun Evans)

TV review
Arts and Entertainment

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Strictly Come Dancing was watched by 6.9m viewers

Strictly
Arts and Entertainment
NWA biopic Straight Outta Compton

film
Arts and Entertainment
Natalie Dormer as Margaery Tyrell and Lena Headey as Cersei Lannister in Game of Thrones

Game of Thrones
Arts and Entertainment
New book 'The Rabbit Who Wants To Fall Asleep' by Carl-Johan Forssen Ehrlin

books
Arts and Entertainment
Calvi is not afraid of exploring the deep stuff: loneliness, anxiety, identity, reinvention
music
Arts and Entertainment
Edinburgh solo performers Neil James and Jessica Sherr
comedy
Arts and Entertainment
If a deal to buy tBeats, founded by hip-hop star Dr Dre (pictured) and music producer Jimmy Iovine went through, it would be Apple’s biggest ever acquisition

album review
Arts and Entertainment
Paloma Faith is joining The Voice as a new coach

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Dowton Abbey has been pulling in 'telly tourists', who are visiting Highclere House in Berkshire

TV
Arts and Entertainment

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Patriot games: Vic Reeves featured in ‘Very British Problems’
TV review
Arts and Entertainment
film review
Arts and Entertainment
Summer nights: ‘Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp’
TVBut what do we Brits really know about them?
Arts and Entertainment
Dr Michael Mosley is a game presenter

TV review
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
SPONSORED FEATURES

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    A nap a day could save your life - and here's why

    A nap a day could save your life

    A midday nap is 'associated with reduced blood pressure'
    If men are so obsessed by sex, why do they clam up when confronted with the grisly realities?

    If men are so obsessed by sex...

    ...why do they clam up when confronted with the grisly realities?
    The comedy titans of Avalon on their attempt to save BBC3

    Jon Thoday and Richard Allen-Turner

    The comedy titans of Avalon on their attempt to save BBC3
    The bathing machine is back... but with a difference

    Rolling in the deep

    The bathing machine is back but with a difference
    Part-privatised tests, new age limits, driverless cars: Tories plot motoring revolution

    Conservatives plot a motoring revolution

    Draft report reveals biggest reform to regulations since driving test introduced in 1935
    The Silk Roads that trace civilisation: Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places

    The Silk Roads that trace civilisation

    Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places
    House of Lords: Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled

    The honours that shame Britain

    Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled
    When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race

    'When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race'

    Why are black men living the stereotypes and why are we letting them get away with it?
    International Tap Festival: Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic

    International Tap Festival comes to the UK

    Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic
    War with Isis: Is Turkey's buffer zone in Syria a matter of self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

    Turkey's buffer zone in Syria: self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

    Ankara accused of exacerbating racial division by allowing Turkmen minority to cross the border
    Doris Lessing: Acclaimed novelist was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show

    'A subversive brothel keeper and Communist'

    Acclaimed novelist Doris Lessing was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show
    Big Blue Live: BBC's Springwatch offshoot swaps back gardens for California's Monterey Bay

    BBC heads to the Californian coast

    The Big Blue Live crew is preparing for the first of three episodes on Sunday night, filming from boats, planes and an aquarium studio
    Austin Bidwell: The Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England with the most daring forgery the world had known

    Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England

    Conman Austin Bidwell. was a heartless cad who carried out the most daring forgery the world had known
    Car hacking scandal: Security designed to stop thieves hot-wiring almost every modern motor has been cracked

    Car hacking scandal

    Security designed to stop thieves hot-wiring almost every modern motor has been cracked
    10 best placemats

    Take your seat: 10 best placemats

    Protect your table and dine in style with a bold new accessory