Castleknock Hotel just outside Dublin a perfect family-friendly venue for a staycation
Family holidays can be stressful, especially with small children, it can be a crèche-ing experience.
Not so at the fabulous Castleknock Hotel just outside Dublin which is designed around family getaways.
Having narrowly escaped with my life from our trip to Spain earlier this year following a row over tapas and soft-play, I was keen to try out a staycation.
So, we packed up the car and got the little one into a cosy snooze for the drive down south and were delighted to find a four-star hotel with everything we needed.
Situated just outside the beautiful Dublin suburb of Blanchardstown the sprawling Castleknock Hotel complex offers everything from an 18-hole golf course to spa facilities, playgrounds and swimming pools.
Our little bundle of joy can’t get enough of water so the dedicated baby and toddler pools alongside the 18-metre adult pool was perfect for us.
We got changed and dived straight in with the range of facilities meaning we were able to swap between baby duty and getting a few lengths in for ourselves or sweating in the sauna, the perfect tonic after a long drive.
Having had a good soak, dip and sweat it was time for dinner and we headed to the hotel’s delightful Earth & Vine restaurant.
One of two restaurants on site at Castleknock Hotel, Earth & Vine follows a farm to fork concept using traditional ingredients cooked in a contemporary style.
The relaxed yet stylish surroundings ooze class and are matched by the fare on offer. Traditional food cooked to a very high standard with professional service personnel who were more than happy to accommodate a grumpy toddler.
Highlights from the menu include the salmon gravlax with chive crème fraiche and watercress salad, the poached hake with crushed baby potato cake in a leek, chive and mussel cream, and the dark chocolate mousse served with prosecco-soaked berries and white chocolate crumb.
Another dish of note was the strawberry and lime cheesecake with Chantilly cream which was so good my partner said she would be willing to drive from Belfast to Dublin just to eat it again.
Our room was just as impressive as the food at Castleknock with modern design in a spacious setting that has enough classical features to retain a sense of home comfort.
Awarded ‘Best Place to Stay’ in the 2019 Fingal Chamber Awards, the hotel has 190 bedrooms, each of which includes a safe, flat screen TV, ironing board, trouser press, tea and coffee-making facilities, bathroom with underfloor heating, separate shower and bath plus complimentary 500mb fibre optic uncontested wi-fi.
Executive grade rooms and above also include smart TVs with Netflix and premium sports channels, Nespresso coffee machines and a view. Meanwhile, deluxe bedrooms and suites also include amenities such as air-conditioning, premium décor and furniture as well as USB sockets for electronic items like smartphones. Another one of the big plus points of the hotel is the children’s playground which comes with a covered and heated patio area adjacent so we were able to keep warm while we kept an eye on our little monster.
Castleknock Hotel is also located close to a number of fun-filled attractions in and around Dublin such as Dublin Zoo and Ireland’s first roller-coaster theme park at Tayto Park.
Our little one is still too small for the roller-coasters, sadly, so we headed out to Dublin Zoo which is just 15 minutes in the car.
The zoo is Ireland’s most popular family attraction and it was easy to see why, the outdoor safari trail allows you to see, hear and learn about the animals and proved to be lots of sensory fun for our son.
With an 18-hole golf course, a deluxe day spa, a well-equipped leisure centre, award-winning restaurants and welcoming bars, Castleknock Hotel really is everything you could want from a great hotel, all under one roof and within easy reach of everything that Dublin has to offer.
For a family looking for a bit of luxury and comfort on the island of Ireland, and somewhere that will keep the kids, mum and dad entertained, Castleknock would be hard to beat.
Spend some precious family time at the 4-star Castleknock Hotel where style and luxury meets comfort and relaxation in a gorgeous location on the outskirts of Dublin City.
Included in all the summer family packages are children’s welcome bags with an exploration map of Phoenix Park, Phoenix the giraffe and a colouring book with a bottle of wine ready in the room for the parents on arrival.
Guests at Castleknock Hotel can also enjoy full access to Tonic Health Club with an 18-metre pool, sauna, steam room, Jacuzzi, and children’s pool along with complimentary use of the hotel’s playground.
Enjoy a one, two or three-night summer stay at Castleknock Hotel based on two adults and two children sharing in one of their beautiful family rooms with breakfast and family passes to Dublin Zoo or Tayto Park.
Packages start from €400 per night and two nights from €650 based on two adults and two children sharing.
■ For information visit www.castleknockhotel.com or call 003531 6406300.