This popular suburban hotel is a busy spot. You will find some tourists and those traveling for business, but it is a regular haunt for locals too. It boasts a fitness and leisure centre with a pool, steam room, and a large outdoor Jacuzzi. Whether staying for business or holidaying with the family, it ticks all the boxes. Equidistant from both Salthill and the city centre, it is a great location for visitors to explore Connemara and the west from, and there is ample parking for guests.
The Clybaun Hotel offers a perfect way to while away an afternoon relaxing with family, catching up with friends, or simply people watching over the grand piano. Guests check in and out, visitors to the leisure centre and the bar are constant, the reception and conservatory areas are vast and a hub of activity where you can enjoy an elegant afternoon tea; incidentally — excellent value at €25 for two people. The menu offers guests a selection of traditional and herbal teas or even a glass of prosecco for those who want something a little more celebratory. The staff bring pretty blue delph and the all-important three tier stand filled with goodies. Scones are freshly baked and still warm from the oven, dainty finger sandwiches and tiny cakes and tartlets are exquisitely presented and scrumptious.
With comfortable seating and great service, O'Gorman's Bar and Bistro is the place to meet friends and family for a coffee, tea, or a pint or two in the Knocknacarra area. During the day the bar and restaurant is popular for enjoying a catch-up while having lunch. By night the atmosphere is fun and relaxed, it's a place for good food, drinks, and creative cocktails. It is a surprise to learn that this is a three star hotel, you would expect it to score higher. This bistro is not just a hotel restaurant, it's a family restaurant, and an extension of the local neighborhood. The staff here are friendly and attentive and know most of their regulars by name. Plenty of seating allows guests to relax wherever they are, with an outdoor patio that is perfect for sunny days. A checked carpet, plush chairs, and a sleek bar dominate this cosy dining space.
Starters of spicy Louisiana chicken wings and Galway Bay mussels in a creamy white wine sauce were classics and set the scene for what was to come. And yes, the chicken wings were actually very spicy. For mains we passed on the extensive pizza menu and went with a classic steak sandwich priced at €14.95, prime Irish steak on ciabatta bread, served with chips. Our other main was a confit duck leg on wild mushroom and lentil ragout, €11.50 from the specials board. Simple, good quality, food for great value served in a relaxing atmosphere. Here the focus is on preparing and cooking food in a way that allows the ingredients to shine.
For dessert we were tempted by the cheese platter (too few hotels have these nowadays ). We settled on the American style knickerbocker glory and a show stopping chocolate brownie served warm with ice cream, great value at €4.95.
O'Gorman's chilled out bar and bistro is the perfect setting for a beer or a cocktail. The outside seating area is perfect for summer lunches and gatherings. The hotel’s jewel in the crown is most definitely its helpful and efficient staff, some of the nicest I have met. This is food for all tastes in a cosy hotel setting and service with a huge, beaming smile.
The Clybaun Hotel, Clybaun Road, Knocknacarra, Galway. Phone: 091 588088. Email: [email protected].