Dempseys Hostel Kinsale, Kinsale

9 Reviews
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Dempseys Hostel Kinsale Reviews

Pitiful in all regard

Never thought a hostel in super Kinsale would be so embarrassing to stay in. I feel shame to my boots. Staff are disgusting in all walks. My partner was followed into our room by them claiming it had to be checked. No caution knock. Just wanted to see her in altogether. They received a strong telling off. Father and son run, both are incapable. The price is a rip off. Hostel is rank, bad pong all over. Kinsale is great, don't stay overnight.


Not bad

Not sure where to start with this hostel. it wouldn't be quite as bad as some make it out, not as impressive either. I absolutely think there has been some crowd sweetening with the good reports. the whole company is very family run (the dempseys), of course it is all amateur hour here -- nothing is done well. the staff are ok -- not good, not poor -- average but missing the mark. the house is clean enough in areas but the summer room out the back had sticky patches and dead flies all around the windows. also the door would not shut properly made me nervous. toilets are a little smelly and other guests aiming at the bowl needs work as there were dribbles. the hostel is not busy most of the people are working there I think the mood in the house is a little off not very happy. not thriving. There was this strange younger guy working there and he was not happy and I have to stress he had the weirdest manner, also there was word going around that he had walked in on one of the female guests on purpose and there was an investigation within the hostel going on. Bizarre! Kinsale has the nicest eating spots in cork and the history is everywhere. the scilly walk is very tranquil; I took lots of pics. I even got to the famous forts and they are magical. The hostel is above a petrol station, which has its minus points. it is noisy. there's a lidl back the road from hostel. I was happy going to shops down town including supervalu and Spar, and there are a nice selection of other shops too. handy to grab a postcard to write. I wouldn't be saying too much to my friends about the hostel in a postcard. I am coming back to Kinsale later in the year. I would not say I wont be going to Dempseys, but I might try elsewhere too.


Worth staying to see how a hostel should not be run

We recommend this hostel to everyone to just come and witness the sheer bottom of the barrel depths of how a professional dwelling is run. we are still evidently shook at the fright this place gave us. this building is tragic all ways from Sunday. the staff do nothing helpful. they are moody and have no personality -- this is everyone who worked, meaning worked in an ironic way. Beds, rooms and kitchen areas, bathrooms -- everywhere all smelled which was strange as the windows were left open even at night, so that's just great -- it allows unwanted predators to attack while you sleep. my friend and I asked could we close these we got a puzzled unwelcome look. There are no places to store your stuff we had a dorm had we plucked for a private room this would have been a different story but we felt we should have been treated better, we booked a female dorm but we saw more than a few males dashing in and out of our room and I swear blind there was a male in the room with us that night but when we awoke next morning he was gone. we asked the staff but they wrote us off maybe it is a mixed dorm but we were not told this and we would not have taken it if it was mixed. The owner of the hostel is not kind and very offensive this too can be said of the receptionist a younger man who is very immature and very creepy this is true of other staff. Internet was very weird as other people were tapping into our private devices so we stopped using it is not secure not at all the hostel is not safe either. it's especially not safe for young females, as the male staff are all sleazy and forthcoming also it would not be family friendly, not a spot for young kids. there was nobody there under the age of 20 when we stayed so that's good as the owner is aggressive and would frighten a child. we were treated like we weren't welcome. There are many nice treats to be enjoyed in town.the fort of Charles was magical. the hostel is to be ran away from but Kinsale is nice.


Worse than the worst

The big grumpy old bear in the crumbling old house -- of all the hostels in all the world we had to walk into this one. The owner is something to behold -- he Hates people and we guarantee he gets that same hatred back. His basic skilled staff seem terrified of him jump to attention; when he says he's caveman like in his approach, never stopped shouting, complaining, and always checking?? What?? The cleaning? This hostel is not clean ... it's obvious the staff hate this place and him. there is no effort anywhere -- the microwave was fizzing and about to short out when we used it. the fridge was flickering, which prevented us from storing food. the stoves were emitting flames where they shouldn't. water in kitchen sink was mucky -- we ate out instead. The staff -- especially the receptionist -- are rude, inappropriately forward, untidily dressed, and in no way helpful. there are mainly males on duty and the whole place is just creepy, and as a group of females we felt very unsafe. we could not relax in our dirty, unchanged beds. in the night we felt as though there was somebody on guard outside our door the hall, floor kept creaking. the local townsfolk deeply revile the Dempsey company as they were shocked we were staying at this hostel. the locals are adorable and so friendly -- the friendliness stops at eastern road. there were hairs and stains on the sheets, which I feel queasy just thinking of. no private bathing, brittle tiling in showers, no soaps or washing extras. staff loom around doing nothing productive. the manager/owner milling about in a threatening fashion -- creepy, oh so creepy. we left early the next morning. we would have been better sleeping on the pavement. we told the authorities in city about the hostel and they revealed we were not only persons to say it. the hostel is watched very closely. the Dempsey family drive pick-up trucks with gaudy lettering, so at least you know them and can hurl rotten fruit. honest and true Ireland is awesome; kinsale is kitsch, but this hostel is like a horror movie. Eastern road, you'll never rest here.

Restaurants are stupendous as we were forced to eat out due to hostel facilities being terrible.


Beyond dire

I spent a hellish week in Dempsey's hostel which many may know is in an immensely stunning town called Kinsale, now I resided in Dempsey's for one week as I wanted to spend my holiday time exploring this part of Ireland, my partner and children were always saying we'd visit and should this happen it'll be for at least a week, while we were at this hostel I took careful note of what was going on, I am a bit fussy about my surroundings. the first thing I want to mention is we were charged 22 euro EACH by the owner an older man for each night this INCLUDED our children who were under 7 years of age, we were lead to believe on the phone that the children once under 12 are half price, the owner himself was very brusque and denied any previous phone conversation which I am certain was a different gentleman who I spoke to but the owner should have been aware that we did speak with his staff. next thing was although we requested a dormitory when we called we were told that ONLY private rooms were available, we excepted this, now I do know it might seem unusual for a FAMILY to book a dorm but we were on a budget but let me tell you that throughout our week in Kinsale the dorms were completely empty, this was easy to document as the refill pad behind the desk clearly showed each room A to G we stayed in room A and the dormitories were room C & D but right across the page were the names of the guest and further along was the payment by the guest, now before I continue I appreciate it was very invasive to leaf through this book as it was in the staff area but my partner and I were convinced we were being done up like turkeys, anyways I will continue on ... a person could definitely see that all week no names appeared in the dorms and everyone stayed in the more expensive private rooms. and i could hear the owner Mr dempsey telling people that they were full in the dorms, So our stay started out badly as we were aware that daylight robbery was taking place, the other thing we noticed looking at the book is some that stayed in rooms similar to us got charged LESS than we did some 10 per person and some 15 per person we learned this from speaking with other visitors, also we were very annoyed when we discovered that the keys are ALL the same for every room and those elusive dorms are the safest having key codes on the doors I am now suspicious that the reason dorms have codes is to prevent guests entering the rooms to find them empty, this was irrelevant though as everybody seemed to know what those codes were, not actually safe, another shocking thing is many people in the town know the outside front door code and we witnessed all manner of people who were not guests let themselves in, the manager joked and said they were mechanics and other workers but this was not the case as we met those described mechanics/workers earlier.It is common knowledge in the town of Kinsale that Dempsey's Hostel used to have NO locks on any of the room doors and have only got them now due to the backlash. these are solid proven pieces of information which leads me to dazzling puzzlement as to WHY is this person in charge of this kind of establishment? The room was appalling, the paint was literally bubbling up into a paste on the walls although they did their best to hide it with careful positioning of the bunk bed which itself was filthy as was all the furniture, which was rickety the linen was torn and stained, the sink was teetering on coming free from the wall, the carpet had mud and grass driven into it the electrical fixtures were broken this was throughout the hostel, the stair carpet was disgusting the toilets were putrid the manager was away for a great deal of the time and when we questioned him, the problems were never solved, the worst thing was the tap water was brown AND the kettle in our room for the free tea and cookies was half filled with beige water the room also smelled very unpleasant. my wife and I actually had to resort to bought bottled water which we were miffed about as Kinsale apparently has fine drinkable water, most shocking thing was the fire extinguisher was out of date, and the smoke alarms did not work as when we burnt our fry one morning, possibly due to the stress, the alarm did not work despite the room being filled with smoke. the internet access is pathetic as some rooms do not get coverage ours being one of them, I will say ONE thing in defense of Dempseys, it is clear we got the worst room, the others are bad but not as bad, dampness wise, the carpets, curtains,bedding everywhere is beyond terrible but the wet soaked walls are only in a couple of other rooms and definitely not as severe as our room, if you do decide to stay there, insist you don't get room A behind reception. room straight across suffers from damp too, how do we know so much about the rest of the house you may ask, the gentleman who looked after place NOT the owner showed us round unbeknownst to the owner. the kitchen was hardly big enough to allow a number of guests to cook and the appliances are ancient and caked in dirt, the light bulb above the cooking area was covered in deceased flies as was the window sills everywhere, the dustbins were NEVER emptied, going back to those toilets ... a bit more detail. toilet paper was often thrown around the restrooms and we did see oily prints on the starter sheets of those toilet rolls, the toilet nearest the entry way was cracked and spilled water out on to the floor, showers were unusable either roasting or frosty, we were promised towels on arrival never did they come. We later found out that the hostel charges 20 per person for private room and not only were we charged more than some but we were overcharged in itself, the owner knowingly and wittingly took the extra 2 euro each from us that's quite a nice profit for not even doing a good job the hostel is repulsive, the manager was absent the owner as good as stole from us, he was aggressive ... the only thing positive was because it is such a horrible place few stayed along with us so there was quiet. I should make a point that the owner is a very ill mannered person and he was turned out most inappropriately in less than acceptable clothing and he did have a bit of a whiff, I'm sorry to be so personal but this is a fact. It is my utmost wish that you will post the reality of this place, they are never too full in the dormitories you will get charged more than is the cost, children are discouraged, the heating is never switched on unless you beg, the water will probably give you gastric problems like I said WE didn't drink it, the manager has his priorities elsewhere the owner is to be avoided. I'm not blaming anybody only the owner he was there he was understanding of all that went on. Since our stay I have spoken to literally dozens of previous guests of this hostel, I regularly meet fellow globe trotters through my blog and they say the exact same thing and worse, there should be more stringent measures for places like this, honestly it is by far the worst place I have ever entered, I have nothing good to say about it at all, it is close to petrol station and supermarkets but that's it ... I will never ever forget my horrible time here and I have only scratched the surface of how disgraceful this hostel is.


Worst experience ever

Avoid!! Worst experience ever with hostel. After we had asked the price, we asked if we could see the room. The answer was: "You want it or not?!" Then we said okay we think about the room (that we couldn't see). We were talking about that situation on the street when the manager asked if we are still thinking, we said not anymore. Then the manager: "Leave the property now." And actually we were just standing outside the fence on the street. This guy is a psychpat, avoid FAR his property!

Age 42 | Hungarian

Kinsale is not exactly over run with hostels.

I stayed here with a bunch of friends and family and all fairness I found it to be drab looking and not exactly peachy inside or out, but the manager and other staff bend all shapes and sizes to assist you in any way that's needed, there is plenty to do around the area and they (staff) are simply delighted to tell you all about it. highlight is Charles fort, scilly and the ghost tour is certainly worth a punt. the garage is next door and all the fellas working there are friendly and this is owned by the same person as hostel so obviously the good manners and excellent service runs throughout his entire workforce. its a little pricey and not pampering but as hostels go the people running it make it worthwhile, I understand people have had less than nice encounters with these people, but there are two sides to every story and we tourists are not always the easiest to get along with. Towels need to be rented, no oven, great gas stoves though, loads of cups, cutlery, forks, plates and all kitchen essentials. no food is provided. I would happily return when I can, it's a little gem all considered the manager stated that repainting of the interior is on the agenda, it IS very clean but because it's dated looking inside there is a rundown feel and this can be misconstrued as dirty, toilets were gleaming, showers a bit low pressured but perfectly sanitary, kitchen is pokey but not untidy or dirty. there's free wifi and the manager owner and staff are always milling about to chat.

Jeff O sullivan
Age 46 | Ireland

Dempseys Hostel Kinsale is an adequate budget place to stay. It could use updated bedding and carpeting, but it is clean enough. There are large common areas for dining, games, and TV. The manager is polite and helpful and seems genuinely interested in keeping things clean and tidy.

The Location

The hostel is about five minutes' walk from town, so it is not really in the center of the lovely town of Kinsale. It is located next door to a small gas station but set back from the road a little bit, so it is pretty quiet. The walk into town is a short one. There is also a Lidl nearby, convenient for buying groceries. There is a place to park a few cars behind the hostel.

Rooms and Bathrooms

This hostel has basic rooms that are fairly clean, with a wash basin, mirror, table, and chair. The wash basin is a nice touch and the table provides a place to put your stuff. The mattresses are thin and should be replaced for the sake of comfort. There are three dorms that have four, six, or seven beds and four family rooms that can accommodate three to four people each.

Bathrooms are small but clean. Adjusting the hot water in showers can be a little tricky until you get the hang of it. The shower stalls give you enough privacy to dress in your own space, with hooks to hang your towel and belongings and keep them dry.

Common Spaces

There are several common areas. There is a TV room with a large sofa and a computer. Wi-Fi is available for a charge. There is also a separate glassed-in porch/room with dining tables, sofas and chairs, a pool table, videos and DVDs. So there is space in these common areas conducive to socializing, but it seems the hostel atmosphere depends on the number of people there. We found it to be quiet -- this is not a party hostel. There does not seem to be a curfew. The kitchen is small, but workable enough for simple self-catering. There are burners; microwave; fridge; toaster; and an assortment of cutlery, dishes, and pots.


If you are looking for a charming location or up-to-date furnishings, this hostel is not going to fit the bill. It is a basic, older hostel with a manager who is willing to do what he can to help with your stay if you ask.
United States

More reviews...

Dempseys Hostel Kinsale Reviews from the Web

Great place to stay, frendly staff, highly recommended


The staff were rude and it didnt feel secure of safe. Would not recommend.


Patrick the manager was incredible


The staff is marvellous, Alex is great



Our hostel is a small 32 bed hostel and we are in that business now for 21 years. Located on the main road into town, the bus will stop at door on request. We are 5 min walk from the centre of town and the harbour. The town is internationally rewarded as one of the prettiest in the world and the harbour walks and pub entertainment is second to none. Famous for its nautical battles , piracy and cosmopolitan nature, you may hear 10 languages strolling around Kinsale.
We accept credit cards or debit cards when guests are paying at check in.

Please note bookings for any kind of groups inc sports, stag, hen or 21st birthday parties need to be discussed by phone or email prior to booking.
Please keep noise levels down between 11.30pm and 8am to respect other guests comfort.

Check out is 10am thank you.If you need a late check out please let us know and we will try to accommodate.

Location and Contact


The hostel is located along the main road to Cork, near the edge of Kinsale town as you head up the hills. Look out for Dempsey's Garage and you're there.

Address: Eastern Road, Kinsale, County Cork, Ireland

Dempseys Hostel Kinsale is listed on the following booking sites:

Not listed at Hostelworld


Website Dempseys Hostel Kinsale Kinsale
Phone Number: +353 (021) 4772124
To add or correct information for this listing, please use the Listing Correction Form.

Facilities and Amenities

+50 Traveller

Family-Friendly Hostel

Solo Traveller



Wi-Fi in Lobby/Commons

Wi-Fi in Rooms

Towels (1 euro rental)

BBQ Grill

Entirely Non-Smoking


Hot Showers



Lounge Area

Movie Library/Rental

Outdoor Seating

Pool Table

Power Point/Sockets in Rooms

Airport Pickup


Credit Card Payments

Lockers in Rooms

Luggage Storage

Wheelchair Accessible


Min. Age without Parent: 19

Checkout: 10:00 (10 AM)

Maximum Stay: 1 week

Minimum Stay: 1 night

Open Dates: All Year

Reception Hours: 10 30 am to 8 30pm


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