Langtons is mainly famous for its maze of bars, with seating areas and restaurants that stretch right through this substantial building to a garden and private car park.
Although the fine classic frontage remains, the old traditional bar at the front has been modernised, an outdoor bar and dining area has been added and, beyond the bar, the big Langton Ballroom has also been renovated - and this extraordinary place even houses a theatre. Eamonn Langton, proprietor since the 1970s and now joined by a new generation of family members, is an unusual publican and hotelier in many ways and renowned for his fascination for design, which permeates every aspect of the business.
A claim to fame that has aroused public interest of late is Eamonn Langton's long connection with the late David Collins, the internationally renowned Irish designer who did very little work in Ireland - except for Eamonn Langton in Kilkenny. The best known example is the controversial modern window of The Marble City Bar (see entry), but Langtons Hotel is awash with Collins projects.
Viewed as an hotel, first impressions may be mixed as the arrangement of the reception area means arrival can seem a bit disorganised. However, this is a slightly wacky hotel of some character and has genuine hospitality at its heart - as summed up by the note to guests: "Feeling a bit chilly? Bring a hot water bottle to the bar and we will fill it for you!"
The good-sized rooms are furnished with aplomb and have well-appointed bathrooms, making it a good place to stay if you want to be in the city centre.
Langton’s also offers a lively middle of the road dining experience - good food without frills, friendly service and good value for money.