Housed inside four restored, listed Georgian houses, the Merrion doesn't shy away from a little frill here, a delicate striped couch there. No, this place is definitely in touch with its feminine side. Downstairs the public spaces are dominated by quiet, girly drawing rooms where fires glow in hearths and you long for tea and scones, and - hey presto! - they're yours at the drop of a few euros.
The impressive contemporary art on the walls is part of one of the country's largest private collections. Service is discreetly omnipresent, and the spacious rooms overlook either the government buildings or the hotel's 18th-century-inspired gardens of acacia and lilac. Pamper yourself in the Tethra Spa, stretch your credit card at the Michelin-starred Patrick Guilbaud restaurant or dine at the somewhat cheaper and more atmospheric Cellar .