We stayed for a week in August and it rained most of the time. We were expecting a luxury rental, and the building was clean and the furniture in good condition. There was no parking available outside, the road was waterlogged, with pools deeper than the kids boots, and the deck was slippy. Our house was on a woodland path, which meant every other guest passed directly by our windows night and day. The front door was on the opposite side of the house to parking, which was inconvenient to say the least, considering the rain! When we turned on the oven, it was full of smoke and not clean and covered with tin foil. The storage heating didn't appear to work and it was freezing. We called for help and staff told us it would take 24 hours for the heating to work...not good on a cold, damp wet night, it came on for a brief bout of sunshine we had the next day. The TV promised entertatainment, except you couldn't access any of the listed hotel channels. The vermin killing boxes on the side of the house were within reach of our small kids and the playground provided no shelter and was not popular with our kids.
On the subject of children, any outdoor amenities at the property that could have been fun, such as walking off the pavements or on the bleachers were strictly forbidden. The swimming pool was packed on every occasion and the life guard always reading a newspaper rather than watching the pool. The games room, well, the equipment was mostly broken and it cost 2€ for a game of pool in the four star hotel. The children's crèche was in a windowlesspp room, piled high with toys and a very young girl, with no back-up. Our kids stayed twenty minutes, in which time they had already been given orange squash without my permission. I didn't leave them again.
The forest trails were suitable only for the over fours and certainly adult supervision was required at every moment as you could turn s corner and find an unrailed point where the rough sea was just below. Some of it was beautiful and when we spotted whales a little out to sea, at the main house a good twenty minute walk from our villa, we asked if they had binoculars we could borrow, but there was none. The restaurant at the hotel told us they could not accommodate our vegetarian children with half portions of their very mediocre menu. In fact we left two days early in disgust. When we said we were leaving due to our disappointment the staff did not even acknowledge we were unhappy or ask what the problem was or if they could solve it.
We wished we taken a hotel break anywhere else instead. At least there they wouldn't expect you to pay 1000 euro for a week, then ask you to pay 60€ for an extra set of sheets (if one was being washed, in a washer dryer combo that we couldn't get to dry anything) and 5€ for toilet rolls, when only four were provided for 6 guests for one week. Foreign guests take note, self catering in Ireland does not refer to food, it refers to all items from toilet rolls, dishwasher tablets, toilet cleaner etc etc. remember you will have to separate and bring your garbage to a central location in a large storage building. There are six cups, glasses, sets of cutlery and plates and bowls for cooking, as well as pots, but none big enough to cook and hold pasta for 6. The bedrooms were fine, except for the twin where the two beds of different heights were pushed together and room fixtures meant they couldn't be separated wide enough to be safe for a toddler and a preschooler.
In the main hotel, the breakfast was crazy expensive and not at all luxurious. It is the only hotel I have ever been in where thd first things I heard on entering were guests complaining to each other about the fact they had to pay for things such as newspapers, where they were normally complimentary.
No one smiled. Not the staff, not the guests, not the villa staff, well to be fair we never saw them, as the villa reception didn't appear to open while we were there, in fact it looked like a storage room.
We got directions from the hotel to the nearest beach for children and while the rain held off an hour and a cool wind blew around us the chikdren were delighted. Never mind the 17km drive, the waves and rocks that meant they couldn't enter the water, and the hundreds of jellyfish all over the beach, yes, we did get stung despite our best efforts and consoled ourselves with an overpriced disgusting coffees from a pub with a mobile home park.
Never, never again.
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