The Western Hotel, a hidden gem

The Western Hotel is something of a conjuring trick. On one side the frontage opens into an elegant Georgian townhouse hiding some modern comfortable rooms. Through the other entrance door is a small traditional pub. It is something of a surprise to find a spacious restaurant tucked away behind it, complete with its own bar and function room.

Right in the heart of Galway city, The Western Hotel certainly has an enviable location. It is in close proximity to the bus and railway station, just a short stroll away. There is a taxi rank very near the door and all main bus routes leave from here. Flanked all around by high profile shops, restaurants, and bars, it is at the centre of a hive of activity, less than a minute walk from Eyre Square. Best of all, this is a white tablecloth place without the white tablecloth price.

With comfortable seating and great service, The Western Bar and Restaurant is a good place to meet friends and family for a coffee, tea, or a pint or two in the city centre. During the day it is ideal for enjoying a catch-up while having lunch. By night the atmosphere is fun and relaxed, a place for good food and drink. Although I have never stayed here, it is a surprise to learn that this is a three star hotel, the restaurant alone should score higher. The staff are friendly and attentive and there is an outdoor patio that is perfect for sunny days.

Very good bread is brought to the table while you peruse the menu. Starters of fried goat's cheese with rhubarb marmalade and tempura prawn salad were classics that set the scene for what was to come. For mains we sampled the steak that the Western is famed for, this came with triple cooked chips, onion rings, pepper sauce, and garlic butter. Our other main was fillet of plaice baked with lemon and chilli crust. We finished with a house-made white chocolate and raspberry pavlova roulade because it would have been rude not to. A three course meal will set you back €21.50 per person from the early bird menu (5.30pm to 7.30pm ) or €24.50 from 7.30pm to 10pm. Simply good quality food for great value served in a relaxing atmosphere.

This is food for all tastes in a surprisingly spacious hotel setting and service with a smile. Just like magic, The Western Hotel is probably not what you expect it to be.

The Western Hotel, 33 Prospect Hill, Galway. Tel: +353 91-562834. Email: [email protected].

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