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This past week, TPG Creative Director Adam Daniel Weiss stayed at the The Morrison, a DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel in Dublin, Ireland. Here is his review of the experience.
Last week, TPG celebrated his birthday in Dublin this year, which just so happens to coincide with the week of St. Patrick’s Day, and invited friends from across Ireland and around the world to enjoy the Irish charm and revel with him. He rented an apartment through Airbnb (more on that later), however as I arrived a day before him, I needed to find a place for one night by myself. It seemed like a good opportunity to review a new hotel, so I decided to stay at The Morrison, which is now a Doubletree (Hilton) property.
The night I was there, it was offering a decent rate of 199 EUR ($253) a night. I’m HHonors Diamond member thanks to the annual spending threshold bonus on his Citi Hilton HHonors Reserve card so I put the stay on that card since you get 10 Hilton points per dollar spent at Hilton properties and there is no foreign transaction fee (plus you get a free weekend night at $10,000 spent per calendar year).
As a Diamond member, I received 2,532 base points, plus the Hilton 50% Diamond bonus points, plus a 1,000-point Hilton Diamond MyWay benefit bonus as well as an additional 253 United miles for the Double Dip partner choice through Points + Variable Miles and I also nabbed 1,000 points through their current Weekend Rewards promotion.
To redeem points, you’d need 50,000 points, so on my stay that would be about .5 cent per Hilton point, which is okay for Hilton redemptions, but I didn’t have a ton of points and this was a work trip, so I opted to pay for the rate.
The hotel was located just on the banks of the River Liffey, which runs through the center of town. Having been to Dublin a few times before, this was to be my first time staying on the North Side of town, as I usually stay closer to Trinity College and where my friends live or at the Westin. The Morrison was located just 40 steps (I counted!) from the Millennium Bridge, which crosses the Liffey to the Temple Bar area.
As I arrived before standard check-in time of 3pm, my room with my requests (high floor, far from the elevator) was not ready yet. However, they did have a king bed room on a lower floor with a “garden view” available, and since my jetlag was about to start setting in, I figured that I should take the room.
Following check in (where I was never asked for any form of ID, then or at any other point in my stay- the Irish are trusting people!), I took the lift up one flight to the mezzanine level to my room. Unfortunately, as nice as the room was, the window was jail-cell sized, and the view was not of a garden, but rather looked directly into an abandoned building.
I spoke with the front desk who told me that they wouldn’t have an alternative room ready for a few hours, so I checked my bags, walked around town and took in the local sights. I checked back several hours later and my room was ready, so I took my bags from the front desk and went up to have a look.
I walked into my room on the 5th floor and found a big improvement. It was large, open, bright and sunny, and although it was on the smaller side (probably around 200 sq ft), it was well appointed.
The bed was plush and comfortable, and the room featured purple and pink accents (including neon light-up side tables), two small couches and a decent-sized (40-inch) flatscreen. Each room also features a quote from a famous Irish author, musician or artist. Not your typical Hilton!
My view had definitely been upgraded, as now instead of cement views, I had a wall of windows overlooking the adjacent buildings. It appeared that there was a terrace, however it was locked and unavailable for me to use.
One issue I did have with the room was that the TV was a bit hard to navigate, and it was on the left side of the bed. Had a couple been sharing the room, only one person would have easily been able to watch TV from bed.
WiFi was included in the room, and I was able to get the username and password by checking out a feature on the television. The bathroom was a bit unnecessarily large, with more floorspace that could/should have been allocated to the room. The bath amenities included Citron products by Crabtree & Evelyn.
It was tiled in marble, featured plenty of delicately folded and ribbon-wrapped towels and had a bath that could easily fit a family of four.
There was just one sink, so couples get ready to share the counter space!
I did manage to check out the gym…by peeking my head in. It was a two-story facility located on the mezzanine (the same floor as my original room), and it featured ellipticals, treadmills, weights and the like. There seemed to be some people doing some serious workouts and taking advantage of the amenities.
The followings morning I popped down to the lower level of the restaurant Morrison Grill for breakfast, which was included thanks to Diamond status. The breakfast area had a lovely spread of a traditional Irish breakfast such as black and white puddings (a personal obsession of mine), eggs, rashers of bacon, roasted tomatoes, mushrooms and the like.
The staff at the property really couldn’t have been nicer (back to that Irish charm I was mentioning earlier) and were always helpful with directions and suggestions. For the cost, and especially the location, the Morrison is a solid choice for Dublin first-timers, especially if you want to be close to the sometimes-wild Temple Bar area but also able to escape it. All in all, I was really pleasantly surprised with the hotel’s eye for design (not something you find at every DoubleTree) and individual character, and I’d stay there again. This card’s sign-up bonus of two free nights can be worth as much as 190,000 points if you redeem them at top-tier properties like the Conrad Maldives, and it also confers automatic Gold status and the ability to earn Diamond status through spending.
This card’s sign-up bonus of two free nights can be worth as much as 190,000 points if you redeem them at top-tier properties like the Conrad Maldives, and it also confers automatic Gold status and the ability to earn Diamond status through spending.