An October 2005 trip
to Belfast by fizzytom
Quote: Let me persuade you that Belfast has come a long way since "the Troubles" and is one of Britain's most stylish and fascinating cities with something for everyone. A place not to be missed!
Attraction | "The Real Belfast with Urban Adventures "
Member Rating 5 out of 5 on June 15, 2011
Belfast Urban Adventures
Hotel | "No First Night Nerves at this Premier"
Member Rating 5 out of 5 on May 11, 2011
Premier Inn Belfast City Cathedral Quarter
2-6 Waring Street
Belfast, Northern Ireland
0871 527 8070
Hotel | "Travelodge"
We picked Travelodge because there was an offer on with rooms for just £5 a night. I can say that we found a decent hotel in a useful location. We booked on-line - a simple and speedy process. The hotel is near the Europa bus station and the Crown Pub. It is close to City Hall - handy for most of the city's bus services. Brunswick Street is open to traffic but is quiet. One drawback, though, is that at the back the hotel, there is a pub opposite staying open until the early hours. When the door opened you could hear loud music. If you are a light sleeper, earplugs should help. Check-in is 3pm but we arrived on an early flight. The receptionist let us leave our bags and suggested that we might be able to check in at 12 o'clock and should try back then if we wanted to do that. The bags were securely locked away and we were even given a numbered receipt so we felt confident they'd be safe. Freshly brewed coffee is available free of charge to guests in the reception area where there are a few easy chairs and plenty of free tourist information leaflets.
We paid at check-in making check out very quick, simply returning our room key. We found our room easily, the numbers are clearly signed. Our room was small but adequate for a short stay assuming you'll be out most of the time. Everything was in good repair and was clean. One odd point - the TV set was huge - too big for the room. There were tea and coffee making facilities but not enough milk! There was a desk but the lighting around it was woefully inadequate. The room had no central light, just two small lamps on each side of the headboard and a dim wall light at the other end of the room. The bathroom was also on the small side but was pristine . The hair drier didn't work and there was no bath mat. The water took ages to run hot and it was difficult to get a good temperature for the shower. Our room was at the rear of the hotel and looked out on a square with a few trees. The window barely opened more than a few millimetres. A cooked (£5) or continental breakfast (£4.50) is available until 11.30am in the Cafe-bar. We did not eat there so I cannot comment further. The cafe-bar is open until around 11.30pm serving drinks, snacks, and light meals. Free parking is available for guests. I have mentioned a few negatives but would still recommend this hotel - especially if there is an offer on. Even if there is not it is certainly worth the £55 which a double room usually goes for. The hotel has family rooms which are excellent value. All rooms are now non-smoking.
www.travelodge.co.uk Register to be kept informed of special offers.
Member Rating 3 out of 5 on December 4, 2006
Travelodge Belfast Central
15 Brunswick Street
Belfast, Northern Ireland BT2 7GE
Member Rating 1 out of 5 on March 4, 2007
53 Dublin Road
Belfast, Northern Ireland
Opium is one of the coolest bars in Belfast; first it's not easy to find, we stumbled on it by chance so you may need an street map. Second, it's so small that you might not get in. But it's not just that it's hard to get into that makes it cool. The interior really is something special. It may take a moment or two to get used to the darkness. There is some lighting but it's dim. Even during the day, bamboo blinds are drawn to keep prying eyes out. The walls are black and deep dark red. On the rear wall is a fantastic image of a Chinese woman from the nineteenth century - a black and white blown up newspaper photograph which fills the wall. A bar runs along three quarters of one wall and opposite are low level tables with low level seating. After a while they become uncomfortable, reinforcing my first thoughts that Opium is somewhere to be seen rather than somewhere to take the weight off! Upstairs is a small club area with a dance floor; DJs play here at weekends. The toilets are pretty cool, cutting edge design with more Chinese images.
The cocktails, though, are what draw people here. A good long list of old favourites, some newer cocktails then some truly fabulous ones with unusual ingredients like cactus leaves, star fruit and papaya. At £5 a throw for a cheaper one this is not bargain basement but the cocktails are pretty special. Also, there are numerous more unusual brands of premium spirits like tequila, some of which are quite costly but excellent to try if you are a connoisseur. There area number of bottled lagers and beers from all over the world, these too are not cheap but by now you'll have realised this is not a cheap bar. I recommend Opium for the impressive decor and for the cocktails but I would suggest you go out of your way. I feel it's a little over-priced, but aren't most places like this?
Member Rating 2 out of 5 on December 4, 2006
3 Skipper Street
Belfast, Northern Ireland BTI 2DZ
+44 (0)28 9023 2448
Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom