Sometimes you’ve just gotta splurge, right? Well splurge we did on our recent trip to visit family in Co. Wicklow, we booked into a family room at the Druids Glen Hotel & Spa and were so impressed with the family friendliness of the place we’re already thinking about when we can return. If you’re planning a trip to Ireland with the kids, this would make a great base or even if you’re looking for a relaxing Spa break, this hotel has plenty to keep the whole family happy.
The hotel is just a 40 min drive from Dublin airport, nestled between the Wicklow Mountains and the Irish sea. Set in its own 400 acres of countryside, just taking a wander around the grounds will help you get rid of all that city stress and breathe in the fresh country air. We hired a car – not too expensive which made it super easy to head out to explore the surrounding countryside but you could easily grab a cab from the airport. The hotel boasts two golf courses, which looked amazing although we didn’t have time to try them out, poor Mr AWTYK was practically drooling at the thought!
Our Family room was plenty big enough for 4 with two double beds and plenty of storage space. The beds were luxurious and comfy and come fully equipped with individually controlled air-conditioning, a flat screen TV, bottled water, Wifi, robes and slippers (for the whole family), tea and coffee facilities (the biscuits were gobbled up immediately!), Elemis toiletries and plenty of fluffy towels.
The bathroom is huge and contains a separate bath and shower, important for us as my daughter hates having a shower! The bath also has an additional shower head – handy for hair washing!
Staff seem to come twice a day to fix the room and restock your drinks and toiletries as you would expect from such a luxurious hotel!
The hotel has a fully equipped gym and an 18 metre heated swimming pool which, as you can imagine from such a family friendly hotel is mainly full of kids having fun. There are lanes if you fancy doing laps but it was great to let Piper splash about, jump in and generally have some childish fun without worrying about disturbing anyone. They do have adult only swim times so if you want a work out just check the schedule when you arrive.
The Pool area also houses a plunge pool (eeeekkkkk no thanks but some others seemed to enjoy it!), a Jacuzzi, sauna and steam room. Obviously you will need to tag team if you want to use these facilities as kids under 16 are not allowed but it really was lovely to shut the door on the noise and have a 10 min steam to myself!
Top Tip If you think you will be using the pool on your visit, be sure to bring swim hats for the family, they wont let you in without them. You can purchase them when you sign in for a few euros but you may as well save the cash for a post swim Guinness or two!
And now for the best bit and the reason we loved this hotel so much – just how very child friendly it is, happy kids equals a happy and relaxed break. As mentioned, the pool is a great place for the kids to burn off some energy but the hotel is also home to a lovely kids play area (kids must be supervised) the Druids Den. It has plenty of toys, books and games for all ages. Piper loved playing on the retro arcade, table football and huge playstation.
But the fun doesn’t end there, the hotel has a DVD collection – mainly child friendly so you can snuggle up and watch a film in your room and a wealth of board games and packs of cards. There’s a cosy seating area just off the reception, we grabbed an evening drink from the bar and enjoyed many rounds of Guess Who and Black Jack.
They even have child sized robes and slippers in the room which made Piper squeal when she saw them – she felt so grown up!
We ate a yummy dinner in the Thirteenth bar and Piper was absolutely spoiled and delighted to receive a Druids Glen fun pack, none of your tatty crayon and pre-coloured menus here! Just another example of catering well to families, it kept her busy while we were waiting for our food so we could have a chat and enjoy the surroundings.
She also enjoyed sampling the non-alcoholic cider, available to help yourself from the reception area.
Food at Druids Glen is a big deal, the onsite restaurant, Hugo’s has been awarded 2 AA Rosettes for Culinary Excellence and is fine dining in bright, contemporary surroundings. It didn’t seem to be stuffy but we chose to eat in the more relaxed Thirteenth Bar which overlooks the golf courses thirteenth hole. It has an Alpine feel with log fires and cosy sofas and a tasty, extensive menu.
Piper chose spaghetti and meatballs (no surprise there) and gobbled it down – as you can see she was so keen I didn’t even manage to get a hand free picture!
I had a pulled pork burger – on the recommendation of the lovely and knowledgeable waitress and hubby chose a traditional burger. Both were absolutely delicious and generously sized.
Breakfast is set up in Hugo’s restaurant – 7am to 11am so no rush to get up too early. It's buffet style and they will bring you fresh tea, coffee and toast of your choose.
There is soooooo much choice and all totally delicious, you can go healthy with fruits, yoghurts and granola (we didn’t!) or full on with a tradional cooked breakfast. I can honestly say the Irish sausages were amongst the best I have tasted – I may have eaten 4!!!! Hubby was also chuffed to find his favourite white pudding available.
This is a tough one, family rooms are between €160 and €200 and it is very difficult to get availability on a Saturday as I think the hotel hosts a lot of weddings/golf tournaments. Comparing the quality of accommodation to that available in the local area, it’s really not that much more expensive and you do get so very much for your money. So I’m just going to say yes, great value for a very relaxing break.
Tricky! Most of it was pretty spot on, just a tiny bug bear as I always like to be 100% honest, I requested a hairdryer as we were going out for the evening, it didn’t come and I had to go to reception to chase, no biggy but the only thing I could think of!
Have you stayed at the Druids Glen Hotel and Spa? I would love to hear what you thought, leave a review here or pop a comment down below. You can also check out the latest prices and reviews on Tripadvisor by clicking on this link Druids Glen.