If you're in need of some me-time this autumn, indulge in the luxury of a five-star staycation in the heart of Dublin city's Creative Quarter.
Having just watched the Downton Abbey film, we left the cinema wondering 'wouldn't it be nice to feel like a Lord and Lady, even just for a day?'.
While the glorious 1920s surroundings of the Stella Cinema evoked a regal feeling inside us, a two-hour stint just isn't enough to immerse ourselves into the sumptuous, sophisticated lives of the Crawley family.
And so it was, we landed at the five-star Westbury Hotel in the heart of Dublin, a fitting setting for us to practice our Lady Mary and Lord Grantham impressions.
As soon as you arrive at the steps of The Westbury – voted Ireland's Number 1 Hotel by Conde Nast Travel Readers in 2018 – you are transported into 1930s opulence, where the impeccably dressed doorman will take your bags as you're whisked up the grandest staircase this side of Downton Abbey to check in.
The hotel boasts 205 rooms, giving a bird's eye view of the sprawling Dublin streets outside. You'll find you are spoilt for choice, but we recommend opting for the four-poster bedrooms to really indulge in that Lord and Lady experience.
The rooms are kitted out with every essential for the ultimate relaxation experience. From the award-winning Malin + Goetz products you'll find in your luxury bathroom, to the Nespresso machine, and in-room exercise booklets, the Westbury has thought of everything for the perfect couple's retreat.
If you can peel yourself away from the luxury of your four-poster bed, the hotel is ideally situated in the Creative Quarter of the city, with the iconic Westbury Mall on your doorstep.
Shops like Stable, a textile shop where you'll find one-of-a-kind knits woven from Donegal Yarn, as well as home furnishings, and Parfumarija, where you can pick up some of the world's finest niche fragrances can be found in the Westbury Mall. Not only this, but the beautiful selection of jewellery at Loulerie can be found only a stone's throw away in the creative quarter.
The nearby Powerscourt Townhouse Centre is a champion of Irish design, from Article, where you can shop some of the best contemporary Irish homewares around, to the Design House, which stocks designers like Philip Treacy and Caroline Kilkenny.
The Westbury Hotel is also within walking distance of key tourist attractions in Dublin: St Stephen's Green, Trinity College, and Dublin Castle.
But guests don't need to leave the hotel for an enlightening experience. The Westbury houses its own private art collection in The Gallery, where you can feast upon originals by Sir John Lavery and Louis le Brocquy, and many more.
The Art of Dining
While you pore over one of the country’s foremost art collections, you can treat your sweet tooth to an Afternoon Tea the Dowager Countess would be proud of. The extravagance of the Champagne and Dom Pérignon options is neatly complemented by the gorgeous pastries, homemade scones and gourmet sandwiches.
For dinner you have the choice of two options: Balfes – an all-day menu with a huge outdoor terrace, perfect for people watching; and signature restaurant WILDE, which is the ideal romantic setting. Both restaurants offer a range of fresh fish and succulent meat daily, and the same quality service you'll have grown accustomed to at the hotel.
After dinner is the perfect time to sample some cocktails in the multi award-winning Sidecar bar. The 1930s aesthetic is everything you want in a lounge – stylish, slick and elegant, with a modern twist. The staff – who will make delicious martinis at your table from the Gatsby-esque martini trolley – are dressed in white jackets and are only too happy to guide you on choosing your signature drink.
The Sidecar has been awarded Best Hotel Bar at the Irish Craft Cocktail Awards 2018, Best Cocktail Bar at the Sunday Business Post Gold Star Awards 2019, as well as Best Five Star Hotel Bar of the Year at the Bar of the Year Awards 2019.
For morning delights, take advantage of the complimentary sumptuous full Irish breakfast in the luxurious terrace vibes at WILDE when you book direct through the website.
If you really want to make your hotel stay an unforgettable experience, The Westbury can provide bubbles sent to your room, with fantastic rates on a romantic weekend break (available until December 31, 2019).
And if you can't quite escape the little ones for an indulgent break away, The Westbury also caters for the whole family, with a Little Bears Family Package, a babysitting service during the day, and at bedtime, kids can choose to sleep in a luxury tepee, and settle down with a supper of milk and cookies as a special treat!
The only problem is, you won't want to leave...
Read about all of this and more here.