ENNIS’ Rowan Tree Hostel has been named as Ireland’s top hostel for the second year running. The hostel, at Harmony Row, was awarded the top prize at the Hoscars 2011 annual awards in London.
Brian O’Neill, managing director of the Rowan Tree, said, “Being named top hostel two years in-a-row is a fair feat and we are delighted. We try our best to offer great hospitality and this is a great compliment to our staff. With the recession, it’s great that there is still good news out there.
“Ennis is a great place for us to have this hostel, it’s ideal for families, tourists, Irish people, groups, everyone. It’s a great addition to the town and we have been delighted with the success of the Rowan Tree in Ennis,” he added.
TV presenter Craig Doyle hosted the awards at a gala ceremony in London. The awards, created by Hostelworld.com recognise excellence in the budget accommodation industry. Winners are chosen by Hostelworld.com customers from 25,000 properties across 180 countries around the globe.
According to Brian, the hostel now aims to be among the top in the world. “We need to get more customers so we can get more reviews. We had a 96% satisfaction rate and the hostel that was top in the world had a rate of 94% but they had more reviews,” he said.
The winners of the awards are chosen based on their overall score in six categories, fun, cleanliness, staff, security, location and character, and were voted for by over one million Hostelworld.com customers.
While the Rowan Tree was named best hostel in Ireland, it was closely followed by another Clare hostel – Doolin’s Aille River Hostel with Sleepzone Connemara in third place.
Hostelworld.com’s chief executive, Feargal Mooney commented on this year’s awards, saying, “The Hoscar awards ceremony is now regarded as the biggest event in the budget travel calendar and the announcement of category winners is eagerly anticipated each year by hostel owners and customers alike. Hoscar reviews and ratings have become a significant factor for customers in accommodation selection and the continued growth in reviews and ratings from genuine customers on Hostelworld.com reflects the expanding appeal of hostel accommodation worldwide.”