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Post Info TOPIC: Reviews on Silver Birch House, Glengarriff?


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Reviews on Silver Birch House, Glengarriff?


I'm considering renting Silver Birch House in Glengarriff for my group trip in October, but can only find one guest review. I've inquired with the rental company about more reviews, but haven't been sent any additional reviews yet (which makes me a bit nervous). Has anyone seen this place or personally stayed there?  If so, let me know how you liked it, or if you didn't.  Thanks.  

http://fivestar.ie/self-catering/silver-birch-house/



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Michele Fitzgerald



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Starting price of 3000 per week, above my pay grade. Looking at the options as you probably have it looks like corporate, wedding, or niche rentals are the main business. not the type of turnover that generates "reviews" ?

I know where it is which is a fairly decent touring base for Cork and Kerry a couple of good bars and eateries in Glengarriff and a generally nice scenic area.. other than that not much else I can say.

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I am not familiar with the rental house. It looks lovely online. It is listed on the website FiveStar. However, the highest rating a self-catering place can get in the Republic of Ireland is 4 stars. In Northern Ireland they go up to 5 stars.

Glengarriff is pretty small. If you wanted a slightly larger very charming town you might consider Kenmare. And larger than Kenmare is Killarney.

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5 Star International is a private rating organisation rather than an officially recognised one, bit like Michelin if you like but without the long history.

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Hmmm. I didn't think of that, but you may be right - they might attract mostly corporate renters, and that type of customer would be less likely to leave a review. Still, in the pictures it looks like such a wowzer, I'm surpised that the only person who has commented on the place so far is a American from Reno, Nevada who stayed there with his family.  I'll be a bit more direct with the rental agent and instead of asking "Could you please send me more reviews?" (which I've already done), I'll ask why the property has such a lack of reviews.   

Thanks for the feedback on Glengarriff.  I've spent very little time there. I've spent a lot more time in Kenmare, which I love, but I've yet to find a self-catering lodging set-up there for a group my size, that I really like and that has an adequate bed count.  Irish holiday home owners seem to favor double beds, so they'll advertise "sleeps 8", but in most cases that's only true if guests are willing to double up in the same bed (which my group of mostly single Americans and Canadians definitely won't be willing to do).   The Silver Birch house has 11 bedrooms and 19 beds (just adding this info in case anyone else is looking for a place with lots of beds). 

 

 



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Michele Fitzgerald



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I agree that finding such a large house is daunting. How many are in your group?

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Group size will be 16-18 (including me and a helper).  I could opt for hotel lodging in Killarney or Kenmare, but I really like the intimacy and other advantages/special experiences that are only available with self-catering situations.  It's always been easy for me to find delightful holiday homes for my small groups of 6-8 people, or spots just for me.   But I'm finding this step-up to a slightly larger crowd a bit more challenging -- still fun, though. I like looking at all the wonderful vacation rental options that are available (regardless of size). I think Ireland must have more holiday home rentals than any place on the planet. 



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Michele Fitzgerald



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The only other place I can think of down there is a little further east between Macroom and Cork, Farran House has been going a long time and gets good TA reviews http://www.farranhouse.com/ 



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     I've never been responsible for more than six, but I can well image the difficulty dealing with as large a group as you mention.  Of course, the demographics of the group (age, gender, personalities) will also affect logistics confuse  confuse

I do have a few thoughts that might be slightly 'Outside of the Box':

     Few visits to Ireland opt to avoid Killarney, given its plethora of tourism options.  With so large a group, down time ('on your own') could be an issue in Glengarriff, whereas Killarney offers shopping, evening strolls, pubs and music sessions.

     Last June, 4 of us rented a two bedroom apartment from: http://www.parkplacekillarney.com/group-booking    Note, that they state the option to offer bed configurations to suit.This is a large, secure apartment complex located on the North end of High Street, making all of town center easily accessible on foot.  Two bedroom, 2 bath units could sleep up to 4 persons (although 2 persons would each share a room).  My cost for five nights was 308 Euro, inclusive of heat and electricity.  I suspect a Group booking price for sufficient units to suit your group would match or be lower than 3000 Euro, but can't say for sure.

   Some details on our Killarney stay are included in my Trip Report:  http://ireland.activeboard.com/t58107182/ticking-the-boxes-tour-june-2014/

     Also based in Killarney is http://derostours.com/new/contact-us/  Deros is a tour company that is also a fully licensed Carter service.  I can't speak to their Carter services, but they get consistently high ratings for their standard tour offerings of Dingle, Gap of Dunloe and Ring of Kerry offerings.  I have personally utilized their Gap tours on three separate occasions without complaint. 

     I have no vested interest in either of these establishments, merely limited exposure/familiarity, but I believe that a mix of either these companies (or similar competitors) MIGHT offer a suitable GROUP experience tempered with a semi-individualized freedom that might be appealing.  I can't imagine that you and your assistant want to be 'On Duty', 24/7!  confuse  confuse



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Host

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You might price out some guesthouses too. They would be more intimate than a hotel and have public space for your group to meet and hang out. A couple in Killarney that I like are Earls Court and Killarney Lodge. Both are walking distance to town, which is a plus.



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Thinking along those same lines I'll give you another idea.  We are staying at The Priory in Killarney this October.  I have never stayed there before so can't give you a personal review but everything I read is positive.  The hosts have certainly been very accomodating to us.  This property has a house and 4 cottages,  The house sleeps 10 adults and the cottages sleep anywhere from 2 to seven people.  Perhaps a combination of these would work for your group?



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Host

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The Priory looks lovely. You will have to let us know how you liked it on your return. Which cottage are you staying in? This is the link: http://www.thepriorykillarney.com/



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"Ireland Expert"  Michele Erdvig

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Wow! This is a beautiful place.  Not the right location for this trip, but I'll definitely put this on my possibilities list for future group trips to the Cork/Kerry area.  Thanks!



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We are going to be staying in the Loft - I'm really looking forward to it.  I promise I will let you know how it works out.  I have my fingers crossed that its as good as it looks and as nice as they hosts have been to us. 



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Thanks for the lead on Duros and the notes on your Killarney stay.  I've now got three great leads (from this forum!) on charter services, so I'm sure I'll find the perfect fit for this upcoming group trip.



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Michele Fitzgerald



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Happy to help with the group trip. Let us know if we can help in any other way.

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The Priory is an excellent alternative to Silver Birch.  Gorgeous, good location too.  I'll definitely check it out and contact the owner for pricing. The main house really only sleeps 8 for all singles who will want their own bed, but with 2-3 cottage rentals added to the mix it could work.   By the way, Trip Advisor has 40 reviews on this place, most of them excellent, so you should feel good about your choice of the Loft. Very little likelihood of it not working out.   I rent self-catering homes a lot, for myself and for groups and guest reviews hugely factor into my decision making.  I've yet to make a bad pick. While great reviews aren't a 100% guarantee that you're going to get a situation that matches what is being advertised, scores of 5 star reviews on a site like Trip Advisor is as good as you can get when it comes to knowing what you're in for, next to a personal visit before you actually rent.



-- Edited by senzar on Friday 23rd of January 2015 05:49:16 PM

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Michele Fitzgerald



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Thanks Michele. I will do this - price out the guest house options you recommended. 



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Michele Fitzgerald

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Thanks for the reassurance on the Priory.  I have used Trip Advisor in the past and acutally that is where I found them.  The pictures and the reviews drew me in.  I hope it works for your group - and I hope its as good as it seems to be.  Trip Advisor is almost as good at Ireland Yes - but not quite.



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