Slieve Donard Hotel

, Newcastle, United Kingdom
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Slieve Donard Hotel

, Newcastle

Rooms: 126

Downs Road - Newcastle - Northern Ireland - BT33 0AH - United Kingdom Hotel Website | | (0 8)43723681
604 Traveller

Reviews - Slieve Donard Hotel

Historical Traveller Reviews of Slieve Donard Hotel

First Class

from MattO
I surprised my wife with a a night away in the Slieve Donard to celebrate our second wedding anniversary. Initially I had booked the excellent Old Inn (Crawfordsburn) but learned that some friends were staying there the same night. As I wanted just my wife's company I cancelled it and booked the Slieve Donard. I requested that my card was not debited and no confirmation was sent by post to keep my wife off the scent which the staff obliged me with. We paid £190 for a superior/deluxe room with a sea view, evening meal and breakfast.
On arrival we were both really impressed with the fantastic hotel building with its amazing views of the Mourne Mountains and the sea. At the checkin desk we were informed that the room would not be availbale until 3pm but we could leave our bags. That was fine and we toured the hotel and walked around newcastle for a while. When we arrived back at the hotel to check in our bags had already been brought up to our room. The room itself was excellent, really spacious, well furnished, clean and in good order, as was the bathroom except for the bath and shower needing regrouting and resealed. Our views from the room window were stunning - clear views of the mourne moutains and the sea.
Our eveing meal was a buffet style affair consisting of starters, main courses, desserts, cheese and biscuits and coffee - effectively a five course meal. Ive eaten in a lot of good restaurants and although the food didn't match a specifically ordered meal in a good restaurant, for a buffet it was of the highest possible standard in my opinion. The starters, main courses and deserts were all first class. This was all washed down with a bottle of Sancerre.
Our eyes were bigger than our stomachs and we retired to our room the let the food settle. I phoned down to reception to ask if we could have an ice bucket for a bottle of champagne and a jug of water. By the time I got to reception the ice bucket and water were already there. We didnt make breakfast the following morning. Slightly hungover we checked out but happy in the knowledge that we'd had a really enjoyable night away.
The hotel, the room, the food and service were all first class. I have high expectations of a hotel that I pay £190 a night for but the Slieve Donard met them. Ive stayed in the Culloden and the Slieve Donard beats it hands down in all respects. I would definately return. And Im sure it'll be even better when the Spa and pool are completed.

Not up to scratch!

from maevoir2004
My wife and I stayed in this hotel for 2 nights just after Easter. A beautiful-looking hotel, fantastic location and scenery to die for. Unfortunately the hotel itself did not reach the same standard.

We arrived a little early to check in and were told that if we wanted to go for a walk, they would give us a call when the room was available. Off we went for a walk, but the call never arrived. When we returned to the hotel some time later, it was well after check-in time, and the receptionist (a different girl) knew nothing about the supposed call.

And so to the room, and delightful it was. Not exactly a nice view, but a spacious room, comfortable bed, clean bathroom, and great plasma TV. Things are looking up.

We ate out in Newcastle that evening and then came back to Fiddlers Bar in the hotel for a few drinks. This is where the hotel simply did not meet any level of service standard, never mind 5-star! Waiting staff stood in the corner while guests tried to get their attention to order drinks. Tables were not cleared of crockery until long after diners had gone, and new people had arrived with their drinks! When staff brought drinks to the table, they just allowed the empty glasses to sit, until I got so fed up I moved them myself. Absolutely dreadful!!

Breakfast was pretty much OK, although the decor in the dinaing area looks pretty shabby, adn is in dire need of refurbishment. The food itself was fine, although again the service was not the best.

That following afternoon and evening in the bar was a similar experience to the previous night. Such a shame, as it's a nice bar, there was a nice crowd, and some live entertainment. Ruined because people could not be bothered to do their jobs properly!

Not a bad stay overall, but I would expect better service even at a 2-star hotel!


from Atourist1
Really disappointed with this hotel. The room was very nice but the food was mediocre. We were charged £32.50 for a meal that we could have had in a cafe for £10.00. Was overcharged at reception with no apology offered. Bar and dining room looked a bit on the tired side. Only good thing was the bed - really nice and very comfortable. Not enough, though.!!

Is that really 4star?????

from A TripAdvisor Member
My girlfriend took me here for my birthday treat some time ago. I found some time now to write a review. At the time I worked for Hasting group so we stayed at a staff rate which was maybe a reason we were treated like a trash. Well, the hotel building is beautiful, set in even more beautiful location near the sea and mountains of Mourne. Well that's it, don't expect more. If you're coming for a romantic stay, make sure you're really in love, that's the only thing which could make you happy here.

Our room was nice and we even had a sea view. Dinner in the "fine dining" restaurant was horrible. I never complain in the restaurants and the rule: if you don't complain, don't expect too much was very appropriate. Meal was very below bad. I wanted steak and got highly overcooked strips of beef. Desserts were thrown on the buffett style table and you have to serve yourself!!! As my girlfriend doesn't drink red wine, we got 2 bottles of wine, planning to finshed them in our room. When we asked the manager if we can have our wine in our room, he looked at us funny and said, well, OK. So we walked accross whole hotel with bottle and a glass in our hands. Dinner was close to £30 for meals pp and bottle of wine for £15! 4 stars you said??? Definitely no. We ordered breakfast in bed and probably pissed of restaurant and kitchen staff with our late order (10am). Nothing on the dirty tray was right or fresh. Coffe stank, fryed eggs were really hard, but seriously, you never tryed anything like that. And well, both plates of cooked breakfast were wrong order, missing things etc.

My girlfriend mentioned this mistake to a receptionist and she didn't even looked at us and said OK!!! Well, stay out of here if you don't wanna risk dissapointement but maybe you'll get lucky. :-)


from A TripAdvisor Member
I made our booking over the phone with discount through the company that I work for and then confirmed it through email. It was for my son age 4, husband and myself for 2 nights, so we booked the Deluxe Family room and payed an extra £20 per night for Seaview.
From the moment we arrived until the time we left all the staff couldn't do enough for us. Very friendly and welcoming. Our room was more than spacious for the three of us and our son thoroughly enjoyed himself.
We will be booking again in July.
Can't wait many thanks.

Better to wait until renovations are complete...

from Molerai
This is a beautiful hotel with plenty of old world charm and conveniently located with some stunning bay and mountain views.

Unfortunately the renovation and construction work took the edge off my weekend break with some noise, lots of dust and a bit of a mess in the forecourt as they re-landscape the entrance!

I would also comment that the service standards don't match up with the grandeur of the surroundings. Our beds were not 'made', rather the duvet was straightened, the bath and bathroom floor were not cleaned, the bedroom wasnt vacuumed or dusted. We also had a flood from the shower which was only remedied after prompting the staff for the second time. Service could be better!!

The restaurant was beautiful with the finest cuisine and pleasant service.

lovely staff!

from KFnCAD
I've been staying at the Slieve Donard regularly on business throughout the Spring, and have really seen the building works progress. It's fair to say there has been a huge amount of disruption, however I have always had a great standard of hospitality and never fail to be blown away by the scenery. The hotel is on the beach, which is beautiful for an early morning or evening stroll. It's a grand old red sandstone building, which commands amazing respect from afar. There are beautiful public rooms with enormous fires, quiet corners for reading a book or snoozing..There are 2 dining options - my choice is the formal dining room, which has a wide menu of local produce and always great desserts! The staff are very attentive and really go out their way to offer great service, whether its the concierge, reception, dining room, the bar, room service etc. The breakfast's are the best I've found in my travels throughout Ireland..and very generous helpings too...
Like the previous review, I'm very much looking forward to the renovations being completed as the spa sounds amazing, however in the meantime I'll continue to give them my business & am even planning to have a belated anniversary weekend there!
Don't be put off by the building works, as there are now plenty of rooms open which means you hardly see a thing and I've certainly never heard any noise during my stays.

What a treat!

from A TripAdvisor Member
My Girlfriend and I stayed in the Slieve Donard for a night, and we were both dissapointed we could not stay for longer.

Yes, there is renavation work in progress, and the lesuire center is closed, but this did not impair our enjoyment in any way.

The room was lovely with a great sea view, and a plasma tv. The staff could not have been better, they were verry helpfull and friendly. we both loved the hotell with it's warm atmosphire and open fires, and we look forward to going back again when the work has finished so thet we can enjoy the new spa complex.

Top marks!

An absolute dump

from hkeenan
I am from Co. Down and so knew the Slieve Donard was supposed to be a nice hotel. Myself and my fiance stayed there in February as we were attending a wedding at another local hotel, Burrendale Hotel. One of the nice things the Slieve Donard offers is a view of the sea but we didnt see the sea the entire stay due to a alot of scaffolding at the front of the hotel. Our room was horrible - a smoking room despite us booking a non-smoking room, wallpaper peeling off the wall and shabby, stained furniture. It wasnt nice and I was much more impressed by the nearby Burrendale Hotel which was a similar price. The service at the Slieve Donard was appalling and it took so long just to have the booking located. My advice would be to stay in the Burrendale Hotel until the reburbishments have been completed.
Management Response from georgiebest7
Firstly, can I personally thank all of you that have posted a review for the Slieve Donard Hotel. As you may gauge, particularly from reading the last number of reviews, we are currently in the midst of the most comprehensive redevelopment and extension programme of any property to date in Northern Ireland. The investment, £15/€22/$25 million will be completed in July of 2006. When finished, the hotel will be one of the finest resorts on the island of Ireland encompassing 175 completely refurbished bedrooms, all with new beds, bedding and plasma screen TV's as standard in all category of rooms. This will sit comfortably with our newly refurbished Grand Ballroom, now the largest conference & banqueting facility in N. Ireland.

The most exciting facet to the development is our the new wing of the hotel comprising an additional 60 bedrooms and a world class leisure suite with state of the art cardiovascular equipment, a 20m pool, Ireland's only Thermal Spa Pool as well as plunge pools, rock saunas and aromatherapy crystal steam rooms. Our 2nd floor in the new wing will comprise a dedicated E'Spa Spa, which will have 17 treatment rooms, heat and holistic experiences, and a treatment portfolio to match anything currently in the market, anywhere in the world. The hotel grounds are also being relandscaped and we will be adding two new all-weather tennis courts on the resort, as well as adding some additional helicopter landing pads. All of the public areas are being upgraded and the exacting specifications of the entire project include natural materials such as sandstone from Scotland, Westmoreland Green Slates, and locally hewn Mourne granite. Fabrics have also been designed and where possible sourced locally, from suppliers such as Ulster Carpets and Ulster Weavers, so a detailed investment.

For those of you that have enjoyed your stay with us I'm delighted, however, for those of you that have had an indifferent experience and perhaps didn't get the apology perhaps your stay warranted, let me sincerely offer that to you now, and I hope that you pluck up the courage to come back to visit us again, ideally once the property has been relaunched this July 2006 as the new ‘Slieve Donard Resort and Spa’.

Safe travels.


from A TripAdvisor Member
We were certainly disappointed in our stay at the Slieve Donard! Amid the confusion of construction, general disarray, moldy turquoise bathrooms, and water-stained ceiling tiles, we felt we were in the midst of a bad horror film. What a mess! We were greeted by the noise of cranes early in the morning and certainly hope the renovations will be completed soon for the sake of future guests, but we will not be among them.

Top Local Tips for Newcastle

getting there you may miss the turn for the hotel if driving.. watch closely for downs road its easy to miss

Skip Newcastle and head to Dundrum The choice of eating establishments in Newcastle isn't great (although there are a lot of good fast food places) so we headed to Dundrum, where the Buck's Head offers great food in lovely surroundings at fairly reasonable prices

get new staff fabulous hotel but let down by staff


Other names for Slieve Donard Hotel

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  • Address: Downs Road - Newcastle - Northern Ireland - BT33 0AH - United Kingdom
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