The key lifetime of Eire’s inns: ‘We as soon as crammed a shower with Evian…’

Kamila Kerner is high quality supervisor on the five-star Cliff Home Lodge in Ardmore, Co Waterford (

“Our turndown service is carried out each night, for each visitor. We attempt to match it in with the time of our company’ dinner, which implies once they come again the room is prepared for them to chill out and go to mattress. We go to nice lengths to verify our timing is ideal. It is crucial to us.

“A number of the issues we do are very typical, like closing the curtains and turning down the mattress, however we additionally do some fairly uncommon issues. Now we have a sleep and rest package deal, which is a lavender sachet we put together right here on website. Lavender places you into rest mode, and helps you fall asleep. There’s additionally slightly card, with a sleep effectively notice, and a routine programme that will help you go to sleep.

“We additionally swap the radio on to Lyric FM, which could be very stress-free that will help you unwind. The lights are dimmed, and we put water and slippers by the facet of the mattress.

“A lot of company would have particular pillow necessities, and would love firmer pillows, or hypoallergenic ones; some company desire reminiscence foam, so we do have a number of choices for them to select from.

“Now we have company who stick with us typically, and we all know precisely what they like, even one thing like understanding they like bigger cups for his or her tea and occasional. We notice all of the preferences, and suppose that is actually vital. They do not should ask for it – it is there once they arrive.”

The Repeat Visitors

“Lastly, the thriller was solved…”

Pictured is Laura Kelly, Supervisor at Kellys Lodge Rosslare, Co. Wexford. Image: Patrick Browne

Laura Kelly is supervisor of Kelly’s Resort Lodge & Spa in Rosslare, Co Wexford ( It often options in our Reader Journey Awards.

“For us in Kelly’s, success isn’t measured within the quantity of bookings we get, however within the variety of repeat bookings. There are particular company who’ve been staying in the identical room and sitting on the similar desk within the restaurant annually for over 30 years.

“Now we have shaped nice friendships with the company through the years. Some love nothing greater than enjoying a couple of pranks on us. On a really wet day this 12 months, one among our common company complained to our supervisor Eamonn that there have been two large leaks in his room. Eamonn ran as much as the room earlier than extra harm was achieved, solely to find that the visitor had gone into the kitchen and brought two leeks, which have been now completely specified by his room. Eamonn by no means lived that one down!

“We as soon as had a visitor point out to us at breakfast that they didn’t sleep effectively, as a result of at dwelling they’ve blackout curtains and so they felt that the curtains of their room right here didn’t present whole darkness. So, after breakfast service we went up, took the curtains down and swiftly despatched them off to the native seamstress who stitched in a blackout lining. The company have been thrilled once they bought again to their room that night.

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“A while again we had a woman come to the reception and complain that her youngsters’s garments had been stolen from her room. We have been most shocked by this, as we couldn’t perceive who would have taken worn youngsters’s garments from the room.

“It seems our housekeeper noticed the soiled youngsters’s garments in a pile, so she took them away and washed, dried and ironed them earlier than putting them again within the visitor’s room. Lastly, the thriller was solved and the visitor was very pleased with the result!”

The proper room (and pillow)

“We as soon as crammed a shower with Evian water…”


Mountain View Suite, The Powerscourt Lodge

Paul Hand is the Director of Rooms on the five-star Powerscourt Lodge in Co Wicklow (

“Housekeeping is so vital to make sure our company are snug, from making certain the room is clear to fluffing the cushions within the foyer. The housekeeping workforce be sure all company and guests really feel they’re in a house away from dwelling, and cleanliness is so vital to get proper.

“The proper resort mattress is all “tucked” in on the finish to make sure a clean prime. The “tuck” in our tremendous king beds could be troublesome to handle and requires good higher physique energy! To assist the mattress settle after this we spray some material softener on prime and clean it out, to make sure that additional softness and ideal look.

“The important thing to a correct fluffy pillow? Firstly, you want high quality pillow and to air it to set it properly within the cowl. One prime tip for brand spanking new pillows is to stay a pin in it to make sure the air can get out and in of the pillow, they won’t sit effectively on the mattress in any other case.

“We do have some unusual requests, that we’re pleased to fulfil for our company. We as soon as crammed a shower with Evian water, heated in kettles whereas the visitor was at dinner. We additionally turned a set right into a Bali beachside room for a proposal, because the couple couldn’t fly because of a damaged leg. She mentioned sure! We as soon as lined a complete room with white sheets and altered them day by day in the course of the visitor’s keep.

“We by no means decide messy company. Our company are paying for 5 star service and meaning with the ability to go away your moist towels on the ground. We’re right here to make sure our company can get pleasure from these little luxuries you don’t get at dwelling.

The 5-Star Foodies

“We travelled over three,500km to go to suppliers…”

Loughlin Druhan is director of meals and beverage at Adare Manor ( The resort’s Oak Room Restaurant received a Michelin Star this week.

“Earlier than we opened, we employed a campervan and travelled round Eire to take a look at completely different suppliers… We spent 9 days, travelled over three,500km, and visited over 50 suppliers.

“What was vital to us was to establish these particular suppliers, and develop these relationships. It is having that reference to them, and seeing their ardour for his or her produce. It is the identical ardour that we’ve got after we’re placing one thing on the plate.

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“Now we have our personal bakery workforce right here… Now we have 5 full-time bakers who bake all the things from sourdoughs to baguettes, banana bread to walnut raisin loaves. We do not purchase in merchandise. We even have two butchers and a fishmonger. Our two major eating places have very completely different necessities, so it was vital for me and the cooks that they might get precisely what they want, whether or not that is a particular reduce or a portion measurement. We purchase the product in complete and prep it in-house. There’s much less wastage, and we get precisely what we would like.

“Now we have our personal beehives, too. We began with seven, and now we’ve got 14. In our first 12 months, we produced 200kg of honey – some we saved within the honey frames for breakfast, some we bottled. We use some for our petit fours – we make wonderful honey and thyme goodies. Final 12 months, we introduced truffle tree saplings, which I do not suppose anybody has. They’re effectively hidden, and I am not going to inform anybody the place they’re, as a result of they’d undoubtedly be discovered and we might find yourself with nothing!

“That was a long-term funding from us – we cannot see truffles from that for 5 – 6 years. Hopefully that’ll be a pleasant little story to inform then. We’re not quick time period. We’re in search of longevity.”

The Concierge

“You are most likely questioning who my favorite company are…”


Denis TC O’Brien is head concierge at The Shelbourne ( in Dublin, final 12 months voted Eire’s Favorite Lodge in our Reader Journey Awards. He has been within the enterprise for 35 years.

“I all the time say that lots of people arrive as my company, however go away as my buddies. You get to know individuals – what they like, what they dislike. They most likely inform you greater than they do their buddies. You get to know all their little quirks, like how they like their scrambled eggs, and at what time they eat them.

“I prefer to suppose that I’ve constructed up relationships over my 35 years with those that, if I lifted the telephone and actually wanted them, they’d assist me. The community of concierges within the metropolis and outdoors is phenomenal. There are individuals who would pay hundreds of thousands to get inside our heads!

You are most likely questioning who my favorite company are. Any of them who’re nonetheless alive will not be talked about – that is concierge rule. However anyone who I actually took to was Sir Richard Attenborough. The phrase gentleman is used about lots of people, however he was the quintessential gentleman. Who’re those I do not like? Nicely, as concierge, you will not hear that both!

“Once I began within the enterprise my grandmother mentioned ‘Oh, I want you have been working in The Shelbourne, so I would be capable to go in and go to it’. I mentioned, ‘Certain Nan, anyone can go in’. And she or he mentioned, ‘No, it is just for the wealthy individuals’. However I all the time say to those that our entrance door revolves the identical for everyone. It does not matter who you might be, or what your title is, what your faith is, the place you come from. That door opens the identical for everybody.”

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The Vacation spot Spa

‘”It is the little touches that make the distinction.”


Devoted workers: Pamela Nolan, spa supervisor at Monart. Photograph: Fran Veale

Mark Browne is common supervisor and Pamela Nolan a senior therapist at Monart (, which was final 12 months voted finest spa in Eire in addition to No.2 in Eire’s Favorite Lodge.

Mark: “Whereas we all the time need to ship one of the best in customer support, we do not need it to be stuffy. It is predominantly an surroundings the place individuals are in bathrobes, so you may’t be standing on ceremony. Individuals come to spas for a lot of completely different causes. It could be that they’ve gone via a bereavement, or they’re having some well being points. It may simply be time to clear your head slightly bit.”

Pamela: “Our spa supervisor has been skilled in therapy for after most cancers care. In schools, you are skilled to not contact anybody with most cancers or somebody in therapy, however we do remedies on all people. The remedies are tailor-made to company, relying on what sort of most cancers they’ve, or what sort of therapy they’re having. That is the form of time once you nearly want one thing probably the most – you are weak.”

Mark: “Our Shaolin monks come over to us from China yearly. They journey all over the world, spreading their message of wellbeing and well being. We began a relationship with them and that is their eighth 12 months with us. It is actually, actually fashionable. Individuals simply like it. To be within the presence of them, and to study their strategies, is wonderful.”

Pamela: “On the finish of the remedies, our therapists put the heated slippers on the consumer, and perform a little foot therapeutic massage. It is the little touches that make the distinction.”

Do you know?


The Shelbourne foyer

Have you ever ever puzzled how a resort earns its stars?

Nicely, there is a prolonged guidelines of standards from Fáilte Eire, overlaying all the things from room measurement to bedside energy sockets. Every property is inspected yearly by its workforce of assessors.

So what makes a resort a five-star? Having a devoted concierge, suites in addition to rooms, turndown service and 24-hour meals service are simply among the standards.

“There must be a component of luxurious,” says Tara Kerry, registrar of lodging at Fáilte Eire. “The buyer who’s coming to a five-star resort expects that degree of luxurious, however what’s most vital is the service.”

Win one among eight vacation prizes!

What do you suppose is Eire’s finest resort? Vote now in our Reader Journey Awards 2020, and you will be entered right into a draw to win one among eight wonderful vacation prizes…

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