Although many questioned the wisdom of allowing a development including a large modern hotel to be built along the quay below Bantry House, it has brought welcome amenities and a standard of accommodation not previously available in the area.
Smart and contemporary, it’s a welcoming, colourful place with some funky features and a linear design following the shoreline that allows most areas to take advantage of the view.
Stylish, luxurious accommodation includes some two-bedroom family suites with sitting room and kitchen - and leisure facilities include 19m swiming pool, gym, sauna, steamroom and Jacuzzi.
Conferences/Banqueting (400/270). Rooms 110 (34 suites, 3 junior suites, 6 family rooms, 4 disabled). B&B €40-75 pps, ss €25; children welcome (under 12s free in parents room, cots available free of charge, baby sitting arranged, kids club). Free broadband; room service (24 hr), lift. Leisure centre (swimming pool, gym, sauna, jacuzzi).
Informal meals are available in the Maritime Bar, but the restaurant has a definite sense of occasion.
Decorated in sumptuous shades of burgundy and purple, with wooden structures reminiscent of an upturned keel echoing the maritime theme, the restaurant has wooden floors that are nicely complemented by comfortably upholstered chairs and plush banquettes beside the windows overlooking the harbour - and darkwood tables smartly laid with strips of white linen and simple, classy table settings.
Menus feature locally sourced foods, such as Beara peninsula monkfish, Bantry lamb and the famous Bantry Bay mussels, and the emphasis is on Irish ingredients spiked with touches of more exotic ingredients, such as sundried tomato coulis and chick peas with chorizo.
Service is pleasant and efficient and, although not adventurous, the wine list offers a fair range including half a dozen by the glass, and some half bottles.