There are cities that become favorites even if you don’t actually live there. You simply enjoy them for all they have to offer and visit them as often as you can. For you these cities have a certain charm. You might even say they are magical. For a long while now, I’ve thought this way about Dublin, Ireland. There was no doubt last time I visited that I would return. It took a few years, though. Finally, in 2019 Hyatt opened its first hotel in Ireland. Okay then, the Hyatt Centric The Liberties Dublin was another reason to visit and my curiosity piqued!
How I Paid and My Room Assignment at the Hyatt Centric The Liberties Dublin
Don’t think for a minute that I’ll go easy on the Hyatt Centric as I pen this hotel and hotel room review. I may be a Hyatt fan girl, but that often means I hold Hyatt properties to a higher standard. After all, first impressions matter and if you’ve not yet stayed here I want you to have the best and most informed impression possible. I’m not writing to promote Hyatt. I’m writing to inform readers!
Specifics About The Hotel And Some Hyatt Centric The Liberties Dublin Backstory
Hyatt Centric is a lifestyle brand so it made sense for this to be Hyatt’s choice in Dublin, especially given the area of the hotel. The Centric brand choice also made sense given the space available to build the new site and hotel. The property is managed by Hodson Bay Group, a family owned Irish hospitality and hotel group providing first class hospitality, hotel management and property development.
Hyatt Centric The Liberties Dublin has 234 rooms with 12 suites and 2 premium suites. The hotel opened in 2019, only a few months prior to the start of the pandemic. It did manage to stay open during COVID, housing emergency workers only. Summer 2023 is considered its first full season of business
When I was there occupancy was robust with around 40% Americans. The rest of the guest roster was largely Irish domestic tourists and visitors from all over Europe.
For Dublin, the Hyatt Centric hotel rating is always in the top five and for the Centric brand (of which there are 68 properties) it is rated ninth in the world. It is one of the top centric properties in Europe along with Centric properties in Madrid and Venice.
The general decor of the property is meant to showcase the 900 years of Dublin’s history, starting with when the Vikings arrived in Dublin. There is extensive historical artwork around the hotel as well as an entire exhibit in the lobby entrance to the elevator and rooms. It’s worth taking some time to read and enjoy the exhibit and artwork.
My recent stay at the Hyatt Centric was for a week. For one night I used a World of Hyatt free night award and the remaining nights were booked with Hyatt points. The all cash rate was well over $200 USD a night. Remember, if you’re paying cash for a hotel stay, let Pruvo monitor your rate for price drops!
This is a good hotel to use a World of Hyatt free night award that comes with the Chase Hyatt credit card yearly renewal as the cash rates during the busy season can be high. Hyatt Centric The Liberties Dublin is a World of Hyatt Category 4 property, meaning free nights start at 15,000 Hyatt points per night.
Because of my Globalist status with Hyatt I was proactively upgraded to a suite, and knew this ahead of time. What I didn’t know ahead of time was that I was assigned an accessible suite. I’ll get into this upgraded room choice later in the review, but know that this is the room type I’m reviewing.
Using my Hotel Room Scorecard I broke down the individual elements of my Hyatt Centric The Liberties Dublin room which scored a 26 of 40 points.
The Hyatt Centric places you a bit off the beaten path. By that I mean it’s not in the heart of the city near Trinity College, Temple Bar area, or the River Liffey. The Liberties is a long established neighborhood of Dublin that has been rejuvenated and refreshed and is as they say “up and coming”.
Dublin is a great walking city, though, so for me that meant being able to walk in all directions and easily get to my destinations and the areas and parks I wanted to explore. I loved the location because I walk everywhere. You might not. The areas tourists would typically enjoy are no more than a 30-minute walk, so take that into consideration. There are trams, buses, and taxis/Uber if you prefer them to walking.
As an aside, Dubliners take issue with the fact that their city is one of the big ones in Europe lacking an underground transportation system. You cannot get to the airport using the metro as you can in so many other cities. Apparently politicians have been promising an upgraded public transport system for years but never follow through on actually creating one.
The room did have natural lighting, with two floor-to-ceiling windows. However, the poor lighting in the room was a big issue for me.
For instance, in the living room space there were no lamps and no lights. When I need more light in a hotel room I often ask the staff and more often than not, they provide extra lighting. Management was proactive and really took my request to heart BUT there were no extra lamps.
How is it a hotel has no extra lamps? Hotels everywhere have extra lamps, so not sure what the issue is.
They ended up finding me a very small dimly lit lamp which I used on the bedroom desk. The lamp from the desk I moved to the top of a chair. Yes, gingerly balanced on top of a chair because there were no side tables in the living room. I’ll get to the weird living room design later in this review.
I do want to point out that I had GREAT help from the property night manager with the lights but there were no extra bulbs and no spare lights.
Yes, I recognize that the average guest stays maybe two nights, but there are guests who work or just want to sit on the couch and READ with proper lighting. I don’t want to sit in a bed to read or work because the lighting in the rest of the room is dim.
Even in the alcove desk area the lights were over the carpet and NOT over the desk. And there wasn’t a light or lamp on the desk.
Window Access (4/5)
Hyatt Centric The Liberties Dublin is located on a very busy street with both car and general street noise. Because of the hotel’s location, I would imagine that most of the rooms have a city view. I had a side street view making the street noise a non-issue.
There are two levels of window shades, one for sun/privacy and one for black-out darkness. I know it can be unrealistic to expect hotel windows that open, but for me that’s always what makes window access a 5 star rating, instead of a 4.
Bed Comfort (4/5)
The bed was too hard for me, but not as hard as some beds at other hotel properties I’ve stayed at. The pillows worked well and there were already different pillow types on the bed, so I was able to choose which worked best for me. Too often all the pillows are the same, but not in this case.
Let me talk about my being upgraded to an accessible suite. I did talk with hotel management about this. As a personal policy, even if the only upgraded room is an accessible one, I never accept the room or upgrade. I don’t require an accessible room and don’t want to take one in case someone who needs one books a room. I think it’s incumbent upon a hotel to inform guests who did not request an accessible room that they are being assigned one.
The Hyatt Centric general manager agreed with me and did apologize. I know she will talk to her staff about this as well.
I’m laying this out for you because I have never stayed in an accessible hotel room before. I can only review the room I actually stayed in. From what I understand, it’s the bathroom, at least in this hotel, where there are the most differences between rooms (though I certainly noticed other room design differences).
The bathroom design had some strange and missing features. For instance, the light for the bathroom was not IN the bathroom. It was just as you walk in the door of the hotel room. There were no switches for bathroom lights INSIDE the bathroom.
The bathroom was huge and had an open shower design. The shower splashed everywhere.
I don’t know about you but ever since hotels started going to big canisters of shower gel/soap and shampoo, I bring my own supplies. In most showers there are still trays on the wall where you can place your own supplies. Not in this one.
In the shower there was not a tray for sundries. My sundries had to sit on the shower floor. While you might think what’s the big deal with that, I’d ask why not just put a tray on the shower wall. It’s a simple thing that those of us who are now (or always did) bringing their own sundries when they travel might really appreciate.
Interior Appointments and Furnishings (3/5)
The hotel is only three years old so I was surprised by all the design misses in the rooms. For lots of reasons I felt the room design showed a poor use of space. It felt like a lazy way to design a room rather than a thoughtful and creative one.
There was no dresser or drawers anywhere in the room, not even in the closet. The safe was on the floor of the closet. I’ve seen safes in some odd places but never on the floor.
Without a doubt, this will be the area of disagreement between people who either do or do not appreciate the design and layout of a hotel room.
I like when a hotel room is sparsely decorated. I prefer fewer pieces of artwork in a room. Even though the living room area was sparsely decorated with only a few pieces of art, it just didn’t come together in either function or design.
I did like the colors of the carpet and the couch colors. However, given the size of the room and the length of the living room wall, the couch was small and there was not even one pillow on the couch. Again, there was no lighting and only two small pieces of art about the literary life of Dublin on the opposite ends of the wall. It just felt like someone went to the store and bought odd pieces of furniture rather than thinking about the space itself and how to best fill it and more importantly, how to make guests feel comfortable.
There was a desk along the wall in the alcove. The chair, however, was very uncomfortable for sitting in for any length of time. Why not have an adjustable REAL desk chair by the desk? There was also shelving above the desk which was totally left empty. Why not put something creative and decorative in those shelves? I’ve seen shelving in hotel rooms where there are books about the location or books about art.
Come on Hyatt Centric The Liberties Dublin………put your thinking cap on and use the space you created!
Plugs and outlets were plentiful, though the outlet in the living room was placed off to the side by the window. There were outlets near the bed and universal plugs and USB charging ports at the desk. I needed to borrow an adapter. I recognize it’s on me to carry my own, which I do. Just needed an extra one this time around. The hotel did finally find me one that worked, so I appreciated that.
I’ve started requesting Yoga mats when I stay in hotels. Though there is a gym in the hotel, they did not have any Yoga mats. Given that Hyatt Centric is known as a lifestyle brand, I found this disappointing. It’s the first hotel I’ve stayed in this year that didn’t have a Yoga mat available.
The property provides boxed water, and it was super generous with providing water. It was also generous with whatever supplies you needed.
When writing hotel reviews I often review the minibar and available snacks. The minibar and coffee area was well equipped with a kettle and Nespresso style coffee maker. There was a good size fridge. No snacks, but plenty of beverage options!
For breakfast there is a restaurant area just off the lobby. It offers a full menu of plated foods. Nothing is buffet style, but the hotel is in the planning stages to see about going to a buffet rather than plated breakfast from a menu. Breakfast service was great, attentive and fast.
The menu has a huge variety, so whatever your breakfast needs are, you’ll be satisfied. I found all their options to be generous and more than enough to satisfy my needs.
And their in-house pastry chef bakes a delicious Irish soda bread!!
There are many large common space areas at the hotel. There is a large pub style bar, the restaurant which does serve lunch and dinner, and work areas. They are well used by people in the community as well as hotel guests. For me they were not well lit in the evenings, so I’d say they are meant more for evening socializing than for working. On some nights there is live music in the lobby, which is a fun touch I don’t see too often in hotels.
When I review a hotel I always wonder what complaints hotel guests have, so I ask the hotel team.
In the case of the Hyatt Centric Liberties, guests complain that early check-in isn’t available and that rooms are not ready. Now if you’ve traveled from North America to Europe you’ll know that most flights arrive in the early morning. This means early arrival at your hotel. And while it’s not pleasant, it often requires a long wait. It happens to us all. I’ve even observed flight crews waiting for hours.
When I arrived at the Centric I was way early so naturally my room wasn’t available. The hotel staff proactively offered breakfast while I waited, which was such a wonderful and unexpected treat. This rarely happens and was much appreciated!
The other complaint people have is about available parking for cars. Apparently, tourists rent cars that they want to keep in the hotel garage for a few days while they enjoy Dublin. They then use the car to travel around Ireland.
The Hyatt Centric garage is small and the spaces are small so this can create issues for people who have car rentals. As a general travel tip I’d suggest checking with a hotel to see what’s available in the way of parking before renting a car, especially if you won’t be using it for a few days. Could just save you some stressful times!
Hotel Service at the Hyatt Centric Liberties
While you can tell I wasn’t all that thrilled with the hotel room and thought the design and layout detracted from my stay, I can’t help but mention the service because it really does tie into my being generally impressed with the hotel.
The staff gets wonderful reviews and I understand why. They are helpful, energetic, and the check-in and lobby area are VERY well staffed. The concierge team is excellent and staffed with locals who know their city and make great recommendations!
The service team in the restaurant and bar areas are great too. Breakfast is busy and the wait staff can hustle 🙂
If you choose to engage the hotel staff in conversation they are a fun bunch to chat with. There was never anything I asked for from housekeeping, the front desk team, or the hotel management team where the staff didn’t happily oblige. I thoroughly enjoyed the friendly, warm and very Irish helpful environment.
Final Thoughts On The Hyatt Centric Liberties
The Hyatt Centric is a good value and a great value on points. What it offers and the service were both spot on, even though the room itself did not work very well for me. I realized it’s a matter of quantity vs quality, and sometimes less is more. I did get to see a standard room and that setup would have been fine for me.
The location puts you close enough to everything you’d want to see. I would absolutely stay here again. Putting together this review was fun because it brought back memories of an enjoyable hotel stay in a city I’m quite fond of. I’m thrilled I tried something different when needing a hotel in Dublin and glad Hyatt made the move to open a property in Ireland.
I think of the Hyatt Centric Liberties as a hotel for people who enjoy mixing their hotel stay with spending time in a local area rather than in a super touristy area. That certainly includes me and if it includes you, by all means gather up your travel gear and give this hotel a try and see what you think for yourself. When Irish eyes are smiling, as they do at the Hyatt Centric The Liberties Dublin, a lot of good things happen!
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