Temple Bar's most prestigious hotel, and occasional home to your potential new best friends/elevator buddies, co-owners Bono and the Edge of U2, this renovated 1852 grand old hotel is the place to sample Temple Bar's nightlife, even if your pals are too busy rocking to hang. The design of the public spaces uses a subtle - maybe even a little dull, considering its rock heritage - palette of natural tones and materials, and the rooms and service could both be a bit more sparkling - but the cachet of staying in Bono's hotel is really why you're there, isn't it?
Guest rooms, with Shaker-style furniture, are a bit underwhelming, decorated in a mishmash of earth tones accented with crimson, royal blue, gold, and chocolate. With the exception of those in the penthouse suite, rooms are small, although beds are comfortable. There can be some noise because of the hotel's central location, but the river views in some rooms (at a higher price point) and chance to be steps from the nightlife make it worth it for most guests.
YOU SHOULD KNOW The laissez-faire service seems to take its cue from the minimalist style - although things have improved recently - so if you like to be pampered, stay elsewhere.
Bathrooms have white tiles and wooden accents, with Paul Costelloe toiletries plus bathrobes and slippers.
The large windows and wood panelling give the small lobby an authentic and traditional feel.
It's hard not to like Cleaver East's mission statement - "bloody good food that doesn't cost the earth in the heart of Dublin" - and what's more, it delivers on its promise, in elegant and historic surroundings. We like.
"Not Afternoon Tea" is a fun cocktail-heavy take on afternoon tea, minus the cucumber sandwiches.
Perhaps unsuprisingly, a hotel owned by rockstars delivers the goods on the bars front. The Liquor Rooms is a cool "prohibition" style cocktail bar with a bistro menu and a great underground vibe. The hotel's Octagon Bar maintains the unique shapes and Arts and Crafts style of the old hotel, and feels properly glam. Its Study area also has many original features and is open 24h to guests for food and drink, and then there's Texan BBQ and whiskey at the Bison Bar.
Don't miss the Liquor Rooms - its one of Ireland's best cocktail bars.
A great location on the edge of Temple Bar and the River Liffey means that pretty much all of Dublin's main sights are within walking distance.
The Winding Stair (4-minute walk) offers great Irish food in a cute former bookshop. Or for something completely different, pick your food and get it grilled in front of you at the Mongolian Barbeque (6-minute walk), which has good early-bird specials.
You're spoilt for choice in this area, but among our favourites are The Auld Dubliner (5-minute walk) - tourist prices, lke everywhere here, but too fun for you to care much - and The Palace Bar (7-minute walk), which has a more authentically Irish vibe.
WHY WE LIKE IT
Irish rock royalty - U2's Bono and The Edge - own this hotel, and that's almost enough for us; luckily, though, the hotel also has great bars, some lovely historic design, and comfortable beds, as well as a killer location.