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Near the Liffey - Certainly not Iffy!!
Isaacs Hostel (Dublin)
Member Name: mariankelly
Isaacs Hostel (Dublin)
Date: 22/01/05, updated on 28/01/05 (181 review reads)
Advantages: Central Location, Cheap & Cheerful, Great atmosphere
Disadvantages: You need a recipt after 11pm
Isaac’s is what only can be described as an old feel type of place. It is a renovated wine warehouse, with stone work outside, and old oak benches and tables inside in the reception/dining/meeting area. I have stayed here at least 10 times in the past 5 years, always renting out a twin or triple private room, so this is my point of view on the establishment.
The hostel is defiantly my favourite, cheap and cheerful with plenty of entertainment from the other occupants. You will make friends, you will see a great city, and all for a great price.
If you do stay here, there is an excellant pub just around the corner, directly across from the police station, which when you mention that you are staying at Isaac's, always have a lock in and include you in it. Their meals are also great, and staff are very, very friendly!
Isaac’s is so simple to book with. Deposits are required, and booking with a credit card is best if you don’t live near Dublin to call in yourself.
- Website. Isaac’s have their own website, that you can use for booking as well as finding out any information that you need. This is how I usually book, and a confirmation is emailed. Alternatively, there are many Dublin tourist websites that you can book through.
- Phone. You may book by phone, securing your room or rooms on your credit card.
- Travellers Cheques can also be used.
I have always found the people that deal with my booking to be very pleasant, answering any questions or queries I have quickly and efficiently. I will deal with the receptionists at a later time!
All prices are in €uro, since that is Ireland’s national currency. Prices will vary, as they do in most places, depending on the time of year that you visit.
Single – from €29.95 to €37
Twin or Double – from €26.25 - €33
Triple (3) – from €21.50 to €30
Quad (4) – from €17.95 to €25
6 – 10 bed room – from €12.75 to €20
12 – 16 bed room - from €11.50 to €17.50
Now I have seen the dorms, but never stayed in them. They are all bunk beds, with very little else in the room. As for my choice, I always book either a twin or triple room. None of the rooms have bathrooms, but when you book twin/triple, the rooms are split up. The room door is adjacent to another twin/triple, and the two rooms share a bathroom with shower. I have never had a problem with this, sometimes when we stay, there are no occupants in the other room and so we have the bathroom to ourselves.
The rooms themselves consist of two or three single beds, kitted out with warm bedclothes for whatever the season, always very clean, and 1 or 2 pillows, with a spare in the wardrobe, which is very large – I know, because I’ve hid in them a few times, don’t ask.
Every room that we have had is also equipped with a bedside table and litter bin, and a large window with a big window sill that you can sit on, looking out into the street, the DART line, or the alley at the front of the building.
The beds are comfy, and I have never had any complaints really. The rooms are bright and airy, and nicely decorated.
For the private rooms, as I have mentioned, there is one bathroom for every two or maybe three of the private rooms. This is a separate door located just beside the room, consisting of a toilet, washbasin and shower, with plenty of soap for washing your hands, and also a small tower for hand drying. You are advised to bring your own towels, although I think if you do forget them, you can pay a small charge and they’ll give you some.
My friends and I, nosy as we are, had to have a look in the ‘dorm’ bathrooms. There are separate male and female on each floor, consisting of fairly standard toilet cubicles, and then shower cubicles. Hand basins were also lined against one wall. For some weird reason, there were plugs here too, so maybe if you wanted to electrocute yourself, this is where you go. Everything again looked very clean, with a cleaning rota on the wall up to date.
I’m not sure how many floors Isaacs have, definatly 3 if not 4, as we always stay on the 2nd or 3rd. There are 58 rooms, and the hostel attracts a lot of younger people, who often get loud and rowdy as they return to the hostel after one, or ten, too many, so beware, you will hear a bit of noise if you are a light sleeper. The hall light stays on most of the night, and above most of the doors is a small window, so this again, may bother you.
For some mad reason, some of the private rooms, about 2 or 3 on each floor, have what looks like those frosted cubey things for walls on one side, which is a bit weird really. You can make out the shapes of bodies the other side, so if you didn’t want one of those, I would mention it, although we’ve never gotten one. Also along the hallways are the stairs and male and female dorm bathrooms, and private ones.
This place always seems busy! You enter the hostel down an alley off the main road, it’s not secluded or unlit or anything, and so feels quite safe even late at night. There is a long entrance area, which is filled with long benches and tables, all dark oak on colour, with the reception desk down the end, usually manned by one or two people. After a few minutes delay until you check in, you receive your key card, and go behind the desk to the door leading to the stairs. Up goes to the bedrooms, down to the ‘cellar’ for left luggage and lockers.
The people on reception have always been friendly towards me, and it’s handy with being open 24 hours. Sometimes you had to wait for one of them to appear, but otherwise it was good. Any queries or help that you need, you can easily ask them and they will help.
The reception room doubles as a dining and meeting type place, there are tv’s, and at night people entertain themselves, with sing a long and music sessions often taking place nightly.
Isaac’s have a communal kitchen, which comprises of about 5 rows of hobs, sinks, and cupboards, and a couple of microwaves. Fridges were also on one wall, great for storing items to keep them cool. There are no ovens, much to the dismay of one German crowd, who hastily microwaved their pizza. My friends and I have often cooked here, finding that there were always plenty of utensils.
There usually is also a great atmosphere, sharing ingredients with the various other people who are staying. Alcohol is also permitted in the dining area, which is the general seating area in reception. The kitchen must get cleaned at night too, as it’s always spick and span, although you are obviously expected to clear up your own mess.
There is a restaurant, which according to the other guests was quite expensive, and a light breakfast is included in the price, if you get down between 8 and 10. I have never availed of this, although I hear I didn’t miss much really.
*Check in / out *
Check in times are from 2pm, and you are expected to check out before 12pm. For dorms, there is also a type of lock out that occurs from 11am and 2.30pm, to allow the cleaners in.
Tough luck if you have a hangover, they will kick you out!!
After 11pm, you are expected to show your receipt to get back in, although I will cover that in….
As I just mentioned, at 11pm, the hostel places 2 very burly but lovely men on the door. To get back in, you need to show proof that you have a room, by means of a receipt that they give you. I think this is an excellent idea, and really makes you feel safe. They will also soon put you in line if you’re making a racket coming down the alley!
Safe Deposit boxes are available for a small fee, and there is a left luggage cellar, again for a small fee – about €1 or so. For the bikers, you may also leave your bike if you wish to stroll about the City, or simply park up for the night.
Key Cards are needed to gain entry to the rooms both behind reception and to your room, so this is also a great feature. All in all, I always feel safe here.
There is a free ironing facility to iron your glad rags before you head out, and a small internet café, although just around the corner, there is a bigger, better one.
Vending machines are available with a variety of drinks and snacks, handy for the late night munch attacks.
Isaac’s also have regular BBQ’s during the Summer months, something definatly worth looking out for!
Isaac’s is located down a side street called Frenchman’s Lane, about 2 minutes from Dublin City’s bus station, Busaras. A few minutes walk away, you will be upon the busy streets of O’Connell Street, Henry Street, and a little bit further, Grafton Street and Temple Bar for the great nightlife.
It seems quiet, but everything is within a few minutes. Connelly Station is just up the road, and many pubs line the streets around the hostel.
Dublin’s DART train system runs right alongside the hostel, but for me, it was as if it wasn’t there. It stops at night, so there’s no problem there, but during the day it wasn’t a problem really, even though on one trip, our window faced directly onto the bridge that takes the line beside the building.
The Liffey River is just a minute away, and there are plenty of supermarkets close by. Busaras Station is also great for trips out of the city, as is the DART.
For individuals, the cancellation policy is 24 hours. For groups, there is a non refundable first night payment required, and this cancellation must be made in writing 14 days before the arrival date of the group.
This hostel is part of the Isaac’s Group, who also own Jacob’s Inn around the corner, also a great hostel.
2-5 Frenchman’s Lane,
From the airport, the Airlink Bus operated by Dublin Bus, will bring you to the central bus station, Busaras, and Isaac’s is just a minute away.
The Aircoach bus service will bring you to O'Connell Street just a few minutes from the hostel.
From Dun Laoghaire Ferryport, take the DART to Connolly Station, walk down Talbot St. and take the third turn left for Isaacs Hostel.
Thanks so much for reading ~Maz x
*This review also appears on Ciao, under my name Evil_Irish_Twin -Thank you!*