Smithfield Square, Dublin 7
The Generator Hostel in Smithfield is a fairly nifty location if you’re visiting Dublin for a weekend. You’re just a (totally accessible) Luas ride from the city centre and there’s some really great bars and restaurants down the road in Stoneybatter. Even though it’s not on the website – or, I can’t seem to find it – the hostel is wheelchair accessible with approximately 10 rooms kitted out to suit a wheelchair user. The bar in the hostel is often used for table quizzes and parties so even if you’re not looking for somewhere to kip, its doors are open to you anyway.
What has it got?
Rooms: Approximately 10 of the rooms will suit a wheelchair user. These rooms have larger bathrooms and roll-in showers.
Seating: The tables and chairs are a mixture of different heights. There are some very tall tables and stools, which would reach the forehead of a wheelchair user and then there are lower tables with moveable arm chairs and couches.
Doors: The front doors are a little heavy to open but there is a doorman inside the door at all times so if you can get it open, they can hold it for you.
Ground: Wooden floorboards and stone tiles.
Stairs: There are steps down from the reception to the bar area but there is a chairlift for wheelchair users. You can operate it yourself so you don’t have to wait for any staff to help out.
Bathrooms: There is a wheelchair bathroom at the reception area and down in the basement. It measures 65 x 95 inches and the door opens outwards so you have room to turn.
Spaciousness: The bar and lounge area are spaced out quite nicely so you shouldn’t feel overcrowded. The only issue that could arise is when people block the doors to the chairlift.
Helpfulness of Staff: They’re very helpful here and the reception is open 24 hours so if you have any issues, they’ll be there.
Parking: There is wheelchair parking available beside the Maldron Hotel on Smithfield Square and on New Church Street. There is also a car park below Light House Cinema with plenty of wheelchair parking spots.
Why did it lose points? The Generator Hostel got full points because every floor and service is available to a wheelchair user. There is even a lowered desk at reception so you’re not waving for attention. The chairlift sometimes gets blocked by people standing in the way and it’s a bit annoying that you have to use it every time you want to go from the bar to the bathroom but at least it’s there. I didn’t get the honour of staying overnight here but it appears to be up to scratch and at a decent price.