Best Places to Stay When Planning A Christmas Shopping Trip to Dublin
So, we know it’s only November. But don’t tell us you haven’t had even one sneaky little thought about what you’re getting people for Christmas this year. After all, there are only 53 shopping days left, and the online Xmas clock is counting down every second!
There are those who, every year, manage to run around town on December 24th and buy pressies for everyone in a few short hours. Usually at a vastly discounted price. Which is fine if you’ve got the constitution to leave things to chance. But the rest of us would rather be putting the last minute touches to the Christmas decs, or lolling around with our feet up, having a a mince pie with a glass of sherry while waiting for the carol singers to arrive on Christmas Eve.
Some of us even like to make an occasion of the Christmas Shopping. A chance to dress up, hit the high street , and make what could be a chore into a bit of fun. It doesn’t seem quite so painful to part with your hard earned, when you do it that way. Even better if you can make a night of it. Glam up, hit the shops, then retire to a hotel for the night to enjoy, drinks, dinner and some pre-Christmas relaxation. Dublin City is a great place for a Girly Christmas Shopping overnighter. The shops and boutiques of Grafton Street enchant and tempt with their well dressed windows.
The lights glow as darkness falls and there’s always a street performer or two to liven things up as you shop. Closer to Christmas, you may even come across a brass band knocking out the famous Christmas songs or a choir of carol singers crooning. Let the smell of chestnuts roasting over a street brazier tantalise your tastebuds as you shop. How festive is that?
In the run up to Christmas, make your gift list and check it twice. Then grab your bestie and pack a bag. Treat yourselves to a bit of retail therapy with indulgence thrown in, at these legendary Dublin hotels.
BROOKS BOUTIQUE HOTEL
Brooks Hotel brings a bit of boutique luxury to the bright city lights. Located on Drury Street, you’re within two minutes walk of the shops of Grafton Street. Here you’ll find big designer names plus independent fashion shops and all the familiar High Street favourites for affordable fashion and gifts. Brooks prides itself on its place in Dublin’s Cultural Quarter, where theatre and the arts are rife, and the major sights of the capital are within striking distance Francesca’s Restaurant at Brooks serves a gorgeous dinner menu of Irish produce, devised by Executive Chef Pat McLarnon, who talks about his professional journey in our How to become a Chef series.
After a sumptuous feast, retire to the Jasmine Bar for your tipple of choice or to taste the numerous whiskeys on offer. In the run up to Christmas, avail of the Brooks, Brown Thomas and Bubbles overnight package. Price per night includes a welcome glass of Prosecco, €50 gift voucher for Brown Thomas, where you can also enjoy the assistance of a Personal Shopper in one of the most exclusive stores in Dublin (advance notice required), complimentary shop and drop service to your hotel room, complimentary turn down service with foot spa on request, delicious Full Irish breakfast and late checkout, among other luxury touches this hotel is known for. What a way to ease into Christmas!
THE SHELBOURNE HOTEL
You don’t get much more glitzy glam than a night at the legendary Shelbourne Hotel. This Renaissance hotel has been the home of the great and the good of Dublin and the world for almost two hundred years. Right on Stephen’s Green, the iconic porch covered entrance leads into a charmed world, where every day cares melt away and luxury is the name of the game.
Overnight in one of the decadent bedrooms. The Shelbourne is even more special at Christmas, where public rooms glow with festive lights and candles and the Christmas Tree twinkles. After your day of shopping, enjoy a seasonal dinner in the historic Saddle Room with its beautiful oyster bar and specialist steaks and seafood menu, served amid leather upholstery, dark oak walls and glints of gold. No 27 Bar & Lounge is the place to see and be seen for a drink before or after dinner. The Horseshoe Bar is the where Dubliners go to get a sassy cocktail or two. Superbly comfortable rooms beckon for peaceful night’s slumber when you’ve kicked off those heels. A superb spot for a Christmas shopping overnighter to remember!
THE MERRION HOTEL
In Dublin’s Georgian Quarter, The Merrion marries the elegant design of the period with every modern convenience required for the discerning traveller. Five star service from a team of staff who are there to answer your every need – even before you realise you have a need! Customer service here is second to none. Dine in the brand-new Garden Room, an exciting new restaurant which opens out onto the formal garden terraces at The Merrion.
Locals and critics have been getting truly worked up about its opening, and you’ll soon see why. Executive Chef Ed Cooney has devised a casual food experience based totally on seasonal artisan foods, with Ireland’s lauded small producers and regional specialities featured. Food is served here all day, from breakfast through lunch and dinner. Rooms at the Merrion are chic, sassy, and any other adjective you want to use to describe total comfort with unique style. Rooms are decorated sensitively, to reflect the heritage of the original townhouses of this part of Dublin city. Lavish upholstery, antique furnishings and the discreet touches that shout Georgian living are all here.
If it’s quirky and unique you’re looking for during your Christmas shopping overnighter, Dylan is the place. Interior design here involves specially commisioned one off pieces and that touch of individuality you love to discover. This hotel’s location just on the border of the residential area of Ballsbridge means peace and quiet is guaranteed when you finally put your head on that comfy, fluffy pillow.
But before that, you’ll have enjoyed a cocktail or two in Dylan Bar and heated Japanese Terrace and some delicious dining at Tavern at Dylan. Christmas lights and decorations only add to the intimate boutique atmosphere here. A city sanctuary waiting to be explored. Autumn Temptations deals throughout November at Dylan include sumptuous breakfast and complimentary valet parking. So you can fill as many shopping bags as you wish,with the convenience of having the boot of your car very close by for the drive home.
As part of the Hilton group, the Conrad Dublin carries all the hallmarks of a famous hotel brand. From the moment you’re welcomed by the Concierge, you’ll feel pampered every step of the way. You and your bestie will sink into the cocoon of comfort of a Superior Twin Room with its spacious storage and 48-inch LED tv, Nespresso coffee machine, wifi and docking station. Comes with a turn down service each evening and newspapers and complimentary shoe shine in the morning.
Already liking the sound of it? Well there’s more! Dinner is at The Coburg, a stunning dining experience. Drinks in Lemuels before or after, offer cocktails specially devised by the Conrad’s expert mixologists. A more casual pub feel abounds at Alfie Byrne’s Bar at Conrad, part of the Galway Bay Brewery family. Enjoy views of the National Concert Hall from the outdoor tables on the terrace and the collection of 33 craft beers and 30 whiskeys. Our only advice is don’t drink them all at once! The Conrad Dublin is close to all shopping and sight seeing, you’re only a brisk walk away and a short taxi ride back with your bags.
CLONTARF CASTLE HOTEL
Looking for the best of both worlds when it comes to your Christmas shopping experience? Well look no further than the beautiful Clontarf Castle Hotel. Situated on the outskirts of the city away from the hustle and bustle of the city centre but also close enough to easily get into the shops. Clontarf Castle Hotel is a tantalizing mix of both old and new, seamlessly blending its rich historical past with the comfort of modernity.
Guests can expect flawless service in atmospheric surrounds. Bedrooms range from Deluxe to spacious Executive and truly extravagant Suites. At every level, opulence and modern chic is mixed throughout, from the top-quality upholsteries to the soothing colour schemes. A great place to rest your weary feet and get a good night’s sleep! A day, out and about at Dublin’s finest stores will of course give you an appetite for a good meal and Clontarf Castle have a range of options for you to enjoy. Fahrenheit Restaurant, is the hotel’s fine dining option. Stuart Heeney, Executive Chef has created an outstanding dining experience which marries modern techniques with a wealth of local produce and Irish specialities. For those who would prefer a more casual experience make sure to visit Knight’s Bar, which harks back to the hotel’s medieval past. Choose from a selection of delicious dishes from the Gastro Bar menu while you sip on a craft beer or cocktail.