After a long day's cycling from Mullingar and anxious for a dry bed (as opposed to a wet tent) we arrived at B-Side Hostel and rang the number posted on the door. We were told that there was no room at the inn but there was the chance of a cancellation. We were told we would be called back within the hour and low and behold, ten minutes later, we were rung and told that we had two beds in the dormitory...to ourselves!
Needless to say, we were delighted. The hostel manager that weekend--the owners were away; I think his name was Jason?--was very welcoming. My daughter and I had an eight bunk dorm room to ourselves and earplugs were kindly provided. (Carrick-on-Shannon is a lovely town but has become something of a stag/hen party capital. The earplugs were not needed however. Carry your own blinders if you want to avoid viewing the parade of inflatable phalli and tutu-bedecked grooms-to-be.)
The room was spotless, the bunk beds comfortable. The kitchen, bathrooms and common room were also spotless. Overall, it is an excellent place to stay and close to everything in Carrick. They also seem to screen visitors so they are not over run by stag and hen revelers which is only a good thing.
The only criticism I would have is that there was no one staying in the hostel in the evening and thus no one to contact to ask for more toilet paper as both bathrooms ran out. This was not an issue for us as we were carrying our own for camping but would have been a major bummer (no pun intended) had we not been. We paid fifty quid for our room--not too bad I suppose, considering it was high season and we had it to ourselves--and would expect toilet paper in the bathrooms at least.
Also, (and I'm nitpicking here but I liked the place and want it to do well) a jug of milk and some tea bags and instant coffee are fairly standard for hostels around Europe and Ireland--several on the Ring of Kerry put on local eggs and cereal or toast; a shout out to Sive Hostel in Cahirsiveen!--and wouldn't go amiss here either, but I got the impression that B-Side is new and still working out the hospitable kinks.
Overall, a fine place and I would definitely stay there again.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Renovated in 2011, B-SIDE Hostel offers comfortable and very reasonably-priced quality accommodation. B-SIDE is situated in the very center of Carrick-on-Shannon, Leitrim, beside the river, Carrick’s great restaurants and pubs, the rowing and tennis clubs and cultural centre, the Dock. B-SIDE Hostel accommodates guests in its 4, 6 and 8 bed rooms and provides full kitchen and lounge facilities. B-SIDE is ideal for individuals, families and groups. ... more less
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