Just over 30 km south of Dublin city this luxurious golf resort and leisure hotel enjoys a stunning setting between the mountains and sea in the Garden of Ireland. Though only minutes from Greystones it benefits from a tranquil rural setting and a wonderful feeling of calm as you arrive.
The marbled lobby with its dramatic fireplace is surprisingly large, and this spaciousness is a general feature of the hotel, from the extensive grounds to the roomy suites and guest rooms, many of them “double/doubles” (with two queen sized beds). It is well known as a business hotel and it’s extremely comfortable with all manner of luxury, including individual ‘climate control’ (heating and air conditioning), and separate bath and walk-in showers.
Alongside two championship golf courses the hotel also boasts a lovely heated pool and Jacuzzi that enjoy natural light from a huge floor-to-ceiling window. The small gym and award-winning spa get much use from golfers, holidaymakers and business travellers. The hotel has marked out walking and jogging paths around its grounds and there are bikes to borrow should you wish to explore the lush green estate.
While mainly a golf resort, families have also become a priority for the resort in recent years. Much investment has been made to deliver an excellent secluded and gated playground, a new indoor playroom with toddlers’ zone and an older kids playroom where complementary movies, console games and popcorn are available.
Family packages at Druids Glen are surprisingly keenly priced for a hotel of this calibre and there are numerous items built in which ease the pain for parents. Alongside welcome packs and seasonal holiday activities there’s a special kids’ menu, for example, and children under 12 eat free. The restaurant also features a special kids buffet during school holidays, making a family break here relaxing and good value.
The aim is to provide opportunities for families to enjoy quality time together, so a kids' club is not offered; while this may seem to be a disadvantage to parents researching the options for a family break, it is more than offset by the quality of the amenities and activities offered, and it's an ideal base for forest walks and visits to Glendalough, Brittas Bay, Powerscourt and Glenroe Pet Farm. Older kids will love the equestrian and fishing opportunities or a day at Clara Lara Adventure Park, as well as the games and movie rooms.
Hugo's Restaurant (see below) is the main restaurant for all guests, for breakfast and dinner, with lunch and bar meals also available in the 400-year old clubhouse, Woodstock House, and ‘The Thirteenth’ or, in fine weather, on a sheltered deck outside the brasserie.
Staff throughout the resort are noteworthy for their friendly and helpful manner.
Conference/banqueting 250/220; business centre, secretarial services, free broadband wi/fi. Golf (2x18); leisure centre, swimming pool; spa, beauty/treatment rooms, walking, garden.
What were once two restaurants is now one bright, spacious brasserie with lovely leafy vistas over the golf course (though there’s more atmosphere in the end room with the fireplace).
The decor is cleanlined and modern and the food is both ambitious and contemporary. There is a pleasing emphasis on seasonality and local produce (food sourced within a 60 mile radius if possible, although not very detailed on menus), and separate vegetarian and gluten free menus are offered.
At its best a meal here can be a real highlight. Good cooking is seen in well executed dishes like a pretty starter of St Tola Goat Cheese Mousse Black Olive Tuile, Beetroot & Thyme Panacotta, and perhaps a main course 'Taste of Kilmullen Lamb' - Loin, Cutlet & Slow Cooked Leg, with Fondant Potato, Black Garlic, Salsify, Cabbage, Lamb Jus.