The Old Inn | 15-25 Main Street | Crawfordsburn | Bangor | BT19
Review: Mike Jones
Built in the early 17th century on the site of an old coach house, is this iconic property derived from a wealthy and prosperous era in the village of Crawfordsburn in County Down. Location is good, sitting close to the seaside town of Bangor and 15 minutes from Belfast.
The traditional thatched property is as welcoming from the outside as it is within, and upon entering the hotel we marvelled at the low oak beamed open ceilings and roaring fire place pleasantly wafting the aroma of oak smoke. A friendly team greeted us with a sense of warmth reflecting their long standing service to the hotel, it was clear that the hotel’s team took great customer service seriously. As we had arrived a little early we were invited into the bar area for a coffee and freshly baked shortbread.
The modernisation of this hotel with the actual building dating back to 1614 reflects the age and beauty of the original style, with oak panelled walls, and a (new addition) bespoke oak staircase leading to the rooms upstairs.
We stayed in The Highway Room, which was very spacious and dressed in a warm neutral colour scheme. The focal point of the room is the beautifully crafted four poster bed, crisp white cotton sheets and soft pillows allowed a very restful sleep.
THE TREETOP SPA
With amazing views over the wooded area of the Crawfordsburn Country Park the Treetop Spa offered everything we needed for the ultimate outside spa experience .When we saw the hydro pool we actually just wanted to immediately have a dip, the steam coming from the pool was very inviting, but we couldn’t resist a little walk around first to see what else was on offer and weren’t disappointed when we spotted the hot tub which is always one of our favourite spa suite stops.
The spa also features a sauna and steam room, a orangery style relaxation room, complete with luxurious heated loungers, and a wood burner for the chillier days. We had a wonderful few hours just unwinding and felt rejuvenated and ready for our evening meal.
1614 BAR & RESTAURANT
The bar & restaurant is named to reflect the original date of the hotel and eluded a warm, cosy atmosphere with attentive staff offered a fabulous dining experience. The restaurant layout offers tables positioned ideally for an intimate date night or social booth style seating.
Renowned for sourcing local produce, Executive Chef, Gavin Murphy, has created a menu for all seasons.To start, I chose the soup of the day with Wheaten loaf and salted butter, followed by a chargrilled Sirloin steak, crispy French fries and a creamy pepper sauce. My wife went straight to mains and opted for the roast duck breast, buttered beetroots, pickled red cabbage, Chateau potato and passion fruit Jus. The food was perfection, every accompanyment on the plate complimenting each dish with some unique flavours.
Following a fabulous meal, a glass of traditional Irish Guinness was definitely the order of the evening, A good selection of wine, drinks and cocktails are available and the hotel features live music a few times a week.
After Breakfast we checked out and had time to check out the Vibrant and extremely friendly city of Belfast with its own unique history. The Old Inn is definitely one of the most impressive hotels in the Region and we wouldn’t hesitate to return. Thank you for a wonderful trip all at The Old Inn.
Prices for Bed & Breakfast with access to the Tree Top Spa is from £160 per night – www.theoldinn.com