by Lissa Poirot
The five-star luxury of The Merrion Hotel certainly doesn’t go unnoticed from the moment you tell your airport taxi where to take you, to the top hat and tails dressed doormen awaiting your arrival. Inside the opulent hotel, you may rub elbows with celebrities. (Kyle MacLachlan of “Twin Peaks” fame walked right on by as we checked in.) The hotel is located in a quiet, residential area, just a block away from St. Stephen’s Green and a short walk from all of Dublin’s best sites. But what makes the luxury hotel truly special is the way it caters to children with its Merrion Kids program, featuring Miss and Master Merrion.
Visit the 123-room hotel for a step back into the style of an 18th Century Irish townhouse, complete with manicured courtyard gardens, fine Irish linens, and decadent marble bathrooms.
Our Editor Loves
- Merrion Kids program
- Convenient location
- Kid-friendly onsite dining and room service
- Children Programs
- Connecting Rooms
- Free Wi-Fi
- Kids' Theme Meals
- Meal Plan
- Onsite Dining
Find the Best Price for Your Stay
The Merrion offers 123 guestrooms and 19 suites in its Garden Wing and Main House. A mini-fridge, flat screen television and Wi-Fi are available in all rooms.
The Garden Wing overlooks, what else, the gardens of box hedges and roses, and features standard and superior rooms and suites. Standard rooms only accommodate two adults and one child in a cot, so larger families will need to select the suites, which accommodate two adults and up to four children with one king and twin beds and rollaway beds in two rooms.
In the Main House, all room types only accommodate up to three people and families may have to select adjoining rooms, some of which have shared entries.
This hotel is in a great location - close to two parks and near museums. The staff can’t be best- service is very good. But with caveats. First , this is an adapted reuse of some very old townhouses. Do you need to I stand that going in. Our room extended accross the width of two of the original townhouses so there was an elevation change down to the bathroom. We found it charming but others may not. There is a more modern wing which may appeal to younger families for example. In addition , our room was very loud. We heard folks in meeting rooms on one side and people watching TV in their room on the other side. Interestingly I saw complaints online about street noise. We had none of that. But the noise from our neighbors was annoying. Nonetheless I give it five stars. It is a special place.
Upon arrival, you'll be greeted by a top-hatted doorman (say Hi to Tommy for me!), and you won't have to worry about a single thing for the rest of your stay. I swear the maids (many of whom are actually men) must have cleaned our room four times a day. We never seemed to have a dirty towel. The high tea (Art Tea) was 2 hours of harp music, lovely tea, and fantastic sandwiches and pastries. And you leave with a catalog of the art collection housed in the hotel, three pieces of which inspired your dessert. (There's a self-guided art tour that's free to guests as well.) Be sure to check out the Cellar Bar while you're there (and order the mac and cheese)! The location is ideal as well, across the street from the National Art Gallery, a stone's throw from St. Stephen's Green, and 5-10 minute walk from Grafton Street.
As part of its Merrion Kids program, children will be welcomed with a coloring book featuring Miss and Master Merrion. Room service menus have been tailored to tots. At the first floor sitting area and bar, children can enjoy "mock tails" as mom and dad sip on a Bailey's Irish Cream. The hotel will arrange for special amenities in your room, and are happy to assist in arranging kid-friendly fun during the day, or arrange for a babysitter during the evenings for an additional cost.
Tthe uber adult-only-looking infinity pool is open for children, who receive mini bathrobes, too.
The Merrion features a number of onsite dining spaces, although the main dining room, particularly for the included Irish breakfast, is the Cellar. Located in the basement, the whitewashed restaurant is filled with arches for a contemporary space. The restaurant is also open for lunch and Sunday brunch, 12:30 to 2:30 p.m., and dinner from 6 to 10 p.m.
The Drawing Room, located on the main level, features overstuffed furnishings and a fireplace for a comfortable setting for "Art Tea." Not just an afternoon tea, this afternoon presentation is a collection of culinary art surrounded by the Merrion's art collection. Served daily from 3 to 6 p.m.
On warmer days, the Garden Terrace opens for al fresco dining that includes light lunches and a more traditional afternoon tea. It is only open May through September.
Restaurant Patrick Guilbaud
The hotel's feature restaurant, Patrick Guilbaud, is a hit across Dublin and is Ireland's most award-winning restaurant. Save this one for a kid-free night and enjoy local and organic dishes in the restaurant's French decor.
Room service, including a special children's menu, is available 24 hours a day. Kids will find a menu based on the beloved children's characters, Winnie the Pooh and friends with items like Pooh's Pancakes, Piglet's Brioche, Tigger Soldiers and other clever names.
Planning & Tips
All About the Extras
The Merrion's gym includes a marble steam room and the intimate Tethra Spa, featuring an Italian-style, marble-tile infinity pool.
Complimentary Wi-Fi is available throughout the hotel.
The Art of Smart Timing
Dublin's busiest travel season is the summer months, when slightly warmer temperatures and more sun make it a popular destination. Winter is the city's low season, when deals are more plentiful.
Dublin's international airport is serviced from major airports around the world. Taxis and car hires are convenient from the airport to the hotel.
Located in Dublin City Center, many area attractions are within walking distance of the hotel.
For Mom and Dad
The hotel's bars include No. 23, a traditional library bar with leather seating and stiff drinks. On the Terrace, a Champagne bar under a warm Irish sun hits the spot.