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Staying at the Listowel Arms Hotel in Listowel, Ireland

Listowel Arms Hotel

A boutique hotel in Co. Kerry, once associated with Daniel O’Connell and C.S. Parnell

It was only by chance that I stayed at the Listowel Arms Hotel at all. The fog in Dingle had canceled my plans to drive around the peninsula so my dad and I decided to push on towards Galway that afternoon and stop when it got close to dark. That lucky town was Listowel, Co. Kerry – “the Literary Capital of Ireland”. I noticed a plaque outside noting that the hotel was associated with Daniel O’Connell, The Liberator, and also with C.S. Parnell. If it was good enough for them, it’s certainly good enough for us.They had a twin room free for a rather princely sum of 60 euro each but where else were we going to go in the dark? This was the only game in town. The price did include wifi, full Irish breakfast and parking until 9am, so there was that. When I got to the room I noticed that, while the room had two twin beds, they were pushed right together. Weird. Luckily they were on wheels so I was able to move them apart. Who orders a twin room but wants to sleep right next to the other person? I want my space.

Twin Room

Our twin room after I pushed the beds apart.

Otherwise the room was quite lovely. The couch was a comfortable bonus but since it was placed next to the tv, it made more sense to sit on the bed and watch. It was the rest of the building that was memorable. The hotel is posh with lots of polished woodwork, multiple fireplaces and grand spiraling staircases. I get the feeling that they don’t see a lot of tourists here. The Writers Bar was pretty quiet when we went down for an evening pint and the breakfast room was likewise empty the next morning. The spread available was great and included items like yogurt and fresh fruit on top of the typical Irish cooked breakfast. It was all served in a room that made me feel like I should keep my voice down and stick my pinky out while I drank my tea. The high-ceilinged room looked out over the River Feale with the racetrack in the distance providing a nice morning view to go with our cuppa.

If you want to spend a little time in Listowel, you could check out Listowel Castle, which is right beside the hotel or if your timing if right, you can check out the Listowel Races next to the River Feale.

If you’re travelling in the area, I would recommend going the extra 16 miles past Tralee and staying at the Listowel Arms Hotel instead. It’s a bit pricey but grandeur and history doesn’t come cheap.

Fact Sheet

  • Where: The Square, Listowel, Co. Kerry, Ireland
  • Cost: Standard rooms start at €120 and include breakfast
  • Amenities: free wifi and parking, full breakfast included, restaurant and bar
  • Number of room: 42
  • Rating: Trip Advisor 4.5 stars


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