The Westin Dublin, Dublin $$$$
Concierge.com's insider take:
This 19th-century building, a former branch of Allied Irish Bank, has been restored and extended to create a 163-room hotel near Grafton Street and Trinity College. The old banking hall, with soaring ceilings, ornate marble columns, and a first-floor Atrium Lounge in which afternoon tea is to die for (and accordingly priced), is a truly magnificent space. The banking counter has been moved to a downstairs vault and repurposed as the trendy Mint Bar, where you can order—with the words "daylight robbery" ringing in your ears—a $650 Minted cocktail (a vanilla and chocolate concoction that includes a 200-year-old cognac and liquid gold). Despite the grand surroundings, however, service is friendly and down-to-earth. Don't expect the period features to extend to the bedrooms—this is the global Westin brand, after all—which are plush (rich mahogany furnishings, crisp white linens) yet bland. The Westin makes a big deal about its trademark Heavenly Beds, and rightly so—you'll sleep like a baby, even without an exorbitantly priced cocktail.—Gail Harrington; updated by Pól Ó Conghaile
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