Bono and the Edge bought the Clarence in 1992 and with a major redesign, transformed their old hangout from a forgettable two-star into a worldranking five-star.
A triumphant symbol of the Celtic Tiger years, the Clarence is now one of the most fashionable hotels in Dublin and attracts a host of glamorous jetsetters from rock stars to supermodels. Londonbased designer Keith Hobbs has given the interiors an inviting, arts and craft feel, with American white oak panels, Italian limestone floors and tall bronze-framed windows lending a fresh, unpretentious elegance. What was once the ballroom is now the acclaimed Tea Room restaurant, with a soaring coved ceiling, charming service and probably the best Irish breakfast in Dublin. With U2’s stamp of approval, the hotel’s Octagon Bar has become a hot place to be seen, and the cocktails are dreamy.
TOP SUITE PENTHOUSE
Why we love it: During refurbishment, an entire floor was added to the hotel’s original four storeys to allow the construction of several new suites, with this dazzling penthouse as the crowning glory. Built over two floors, the Penthouse Suite features two master bedrooms each with their own bathroom, two living rooms, a turquoise dining room seating eight and a kitchen fully-equipped with Alessi appliances. The dark oak double doors lead into an airy, Shaker-inspired space with Irish-crafted furnishings of leather, suede and velvet. True to its rock ’n’ roll pedigree, the suite includes a well-stocked private bar, a baby grand piano and a panoramic rooftop terrace complete with open air hot tub.
- Square footage: 2,088
- Nightly rate: $4,000