Posted by: susanjcaldwell28 | August 11, 2013

THE ESPLANADE HOTEL, BRAY, CO WICKLOW

I’m  just back from a two night stay in this hotel.  It’s our third time staying there and I have always been very impressed.  We used to stay in the Martello but the last time we did, they put us into a very bad room, despite being repeat customers,  and it was extremely noisy so we switched allegiance and have never looked back.  The staff in The Esplanade are always extremely helpful and pleasant, no matter how busy the hotel is, and from the moment I rang in to make enquiries this time until we left the hotel,  they were amazing.  This hotel is an architectural gem in all  its turreted balconied splendour of pale green and red brick.  I love the gotchic effect of the arched windows and stained glass panels intermixed. The hotel marries old world style with modern convenience admirably.

The family rooms are basic but very clean and with extremely comfortable bedding.  My hubbie, being 6 2,  often complains about hotel beds not been long enough but this is not the case in The Esplanade.  We informed them we were vegan and we were assured we would be catered for and we were.  We bought our own almond milk and vegan margarine and the chef prepared us fried potatoes every morning which we had with tomato, beans and mushrooms and toast.  We had cereal first and there was also sunflower seeds and mixed nuts and fresh fruit available.  We were also able to get decaf coffee.  Everybody was delighted with the brunch.  The package included dinner on one evening so we ate out the first night and had dinner in the hotel on the second.  Our starter comprised of garlicky ciabatta with fried mushrooms and a really imaginative salad imbued with garlic and melon.  It was absolutely fabulous. For our main course, we received a stirfry of veg in a very light pastry basket with savoury rice on the side.  It was absolutely delicious,  the pastry was very light and had the texture of spring roll pastry and the vegetables were gently infused with spices.  The rice was lovely too.  This was five star dining in a three star hotel. I did mention to the waitress that there was no vegetarian or vegan option listed on the menu and there should be because a lot of people, ourselves included,  dont like asking for something off menu and in the time we were having dinner, I heard three people enquire about vegetarian options. They could even put on one option and specify it could be served with or without cheese etc, making it suitable for both vegetarians and vegans.  The food was exceptional and I think the hotel would gain more customers if such interesting vegan and vegetarian options were actually listed on the menu.

We were able to leave our almond milk and vegi marge in the fridge and it was delivered out to us every morning.  One of the receptionists was kind enough to text her son to get me a recipe for energy bars made with almond milk.  On the last morning, the restaurant was very busy with everybody checking out and coming down to dinner at the same time. However, if the staff were flustered it never came across and our extremely friendly and efficient waitress (I neglected to get her name, she had dark hair and glasses)  from dinner the night before came over to us near the end and asked was everything okay and had we received everything we needed.  We got an exceptionally good deal price wise and the Esplanade does many offers all year around. I have stayed in many places in Ireland and abroad over the years and I have to say I have never come across such pleasant and helpful staff.  We will return and as far as I’m concerned, if you are staying100_4493 in Bray, The Esplanade is the only show in town.  Absolutely wonderful and extremely highly recommended.

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Responses

  1. Fab! Definitely will be staying here when in Bray. Fantastic that they will accommodate vegans and veggies.

    • Yes Michelle, it was really great, they should just put the options on the menu, as I said, so people know exactly whats on offer. The dinner and brunch were both fantastic, you should give it a go hon.xx


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