Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Malmaison Belfast

Continuing my Belfast posts...

Hidden inside a former Victorian seed warehouse is Malmaison Belfast. It is no surprise to learn that the carved stone-fa├žade hotel is Grade-A listed. Inside, the foyer hints at the trademark black and burgundy themes of the sumptuous Mal chain, with plush velvet seats and chaise lounges, plus heavy drapes.

After a swift and friendly check-in, we head up to our room. Having previously stayed at Mal London (as well as Mal Belfast), we knew what to expect, and even though this time we were in a cheaper room, there was certainly no scrimping on comfort or indulgence. Our room overlooked the street, but it was wonderfully calm. On the Saturday evening we caught the end of Beady Eye’s live outdoor set at the nearby Belsonic Festival, which wafted in through our open windows on the warm evening.

Over our two-night stay, we had breakfast in the dining room on the first day (a Sunday, so there was a later finish) – and my boyfriend filled his boots with the eggs Benedict, which he’d been salivating over since our last visit. On the second morning, we opted for breakfast in bed as breakfast finished at 10am on a weekday, and we were enjoying time off from work. For no extra charge, our breakfast was delivered in belted hampers, with a newspaper on top, and inside the compartmentalised hampers were an amazing choice of yoghurt and granola, fresh juice, fresh pastries, cereal… It was so good, I took a photo and Tweeted it.

Belfast is a city that has much more to offer than a troubled political past and is such a welcoming city. Apart from anything, the customer service we experienced everywhere in Belfast put everywhere in England to shame. There’s so much history to this city and there’s so much ignorance in England about the Northern Irish capital, which is only an hour away by plane. The English played such a pivotal role in creating the Troubles in Northern Ireland that it’s astonishing how little awareness many people here have about the country our forefathers fought so hard to attain. So if you haven’t already, take a trip over and enjoy the city for yourself – it’s well worth it.

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