Can you still go to a stylish restaurant for lunch with a baby? Absolutely!
Sophie’s at The Dean Hotel was a favourite spot for a special treat lunch when I was in work, or a great place to grab a cocktail and admire the view over the city to wind down after work.
When I was looking for somewhere to go to lunch to meet a friend with my baby in that area I was trying to think of wipe clean tables in cafes that would welcome children, so Sophie’s didn’t immediately spring to mind. Stylish and welcoming babies don’t automatically go together in my head. Then I decided I deserved a treat, so I gave it a go and I’m glad I did.
Emerging from the lift there’s a few doors to get through but the staff couldn’t have been more helpful opening them for me. They found me a nice table in a booth with room for the pram even though I hadn’t booked, and a couple of staff pointed out where the baby changing facilities were. These were back out through the doors so I didn’t bother taking the pram out again, I left it at the table and just carried baby and bag there.
I arrived a little early so I could feed my baby before my lunch companion arrived, and the lobby was very busy so I didn’t spot any obvious alcoves that would be super private. The booths in the restaurant were quite open, so even though I could have fed her there I opted to nip into the bathrooms. When the bathrooms are clean, nicely fragranced with good sinks etc I don’t mind doing that, and found it quite comfortable there.
My lunch of chorizo gnocchi was delicious and easy to eat one handed (a must for new parents!) and having a nice spacious booth meant I could get my baby out the pram and sit her on my knee and she was happy to look around at people passing by. It was busy, but because it is a spacious restaurant the tables are well apart so it wasn’t overwhelming for her or me. If she had cried that bit of a gap would have been appreciated.
I had a really relaxing enjoyable lunch, and felt welcomed by staff, so would definitely return.
(out of 5)
|Overall||3||We were the only party in the restaurant with a child so it isn’t an obvious child friendly venue, but the staff were incredibly welcoming and made it an enjoyable lunch.|
|Baby change||4||Baby change facilities are provided in the disabled toilet just off from the restaurant.|
|Mummy toilets||4||Mummy can use the disabled toilet whilst changing baby.|
|Parking||N/a||I took the Luas, but don’t think there is any parking.|
|Breastfeeding||2||As this is a city centre hotel there isn’t a whole lot of nooks and alcoves like you get in a lot of hotels which are handy for discrete feeding, so technically I can’t give it a high score, but I had a very pleasant experience.|
|Accessibility||3||Nice spacious lift, but there are a few doors to navigate.|
Note: All opinions are my own and based on my experiences – if you feel I have missed something please let me know and I will endeavour to revisit.
Image taken from The Dean Hotel website