Our Favourite Coffee neighbour : Kaffe O, Ormeau Road, Belfast

Kaffe O Cafe Ormeau Road, Belfast

After busy Sunday mornings, finishing up breakfast, ensuring our rooms are left like our guests found them and finally helping them navigate to their next destinations …. we need coffee !


Sunday mornings in Autumn and Ormeau park are a stunning combination. Unspoiled mornings in the park provide the perfect journey to Ormeau Road, Belfast. We take the five minute walk through the park (although we wish it was longer) through to one of Belfast’s most famous streets. This road has three characters to it. Lower Ormeau is the little brother than keeps getting into trouble, hanging around with bad company, it been difficult to shed its reputation. As of it late it attracting new businesses and is popular with the student of Queens University. The second character is Ormeau bridge – likes to try and keep the peace in the family and witnesses the rowers of Queens committing to practice in the early hours of the morning.
The third character is Upper Ormeau, home to the famous Ormeau Bakery. Opened by Robert Wilson in 1890, the bakery thrived on this site under three generations of the Wilson family, until Andrew Mills acquired it in 1980. The exterior of the building has changed little during this time. Sadly, the bakery ceased production in April 2004.


Its in this part of Ormeau that Kaffe O offers its neighbours and visitors rest-bite from the city with a genuine Nordic Coffee experience. The first thing you notice is the minimal design and how the interior lends itself to authentic Nordic design. Straight lines, balanced lighting and minimal distractions to help customers enjoy what they are there for : coffee and company. This morning, I took away my usual Americano and a Latte for Kelly … next time, ill go with their recommendation … its places like this you know you experimenting with what coffee should taste like.

Theatre Event Guide for June 2013

Fancy a night at the theatre and a little bit of culture……check out our theatre event guide for June

    Maranatha House

    June Event Guide – Theatre

1-16 June Can’t Forget About You at Lyric Theatre

13 – end of June Weddins, Weeins and Wakes at Lyric Theatre

10-14 June Meisner Technique at Lyric Theatre

4-15 June Hairspray at the Grand Opera House

12-15 June We Will Rock You at the Odyssey Arena

13-14 June Love for Sale at the Grand Opera House

13-14 June The Meal at the MAC

15 June Cluedo – Murder Mystery at the Grand Opera House

14-23 June Katie Don’t Go at the MAC

15-16 June Stars Can’t Shine Without Darkness at the MAC

16 June The Play of the Book at Lyric Theatre

17-22 June 9 – 5 the Musical at the Grand Opera House

20-22 June Piaf at Lyric Theatre

20-22 June The Real Man at the MAC

25-29 June The Bell Jar at Crescent Arts Centre

26-29 June Giselle at the Grand Opera House

World Police & Fire Games start in 55 days!!

This August Belfast is set to host the World Police and Fire Games, following in the footsteps of some of the world’s greatest cities (including New York, Barcelona, Stockholm, Melbourne and many others). The Games have been running biennially since the 1980’s and are made up of serving and retired fire, police, and prison officers from around the world.

The official website for WPFG (http://www.2013wpfg.com) estimates a staggering 10,000 competitors, 56 sports, and participation from 70 countries. The entire event is set to bring in revenue of between £16m and £21m, with the added bonus of raising the city’s international profile immeasurably.

The WPFG events will take place in a number of different locations across the city with the sports ranging from the more usual (e.g. badminton, tennis, golf and swimming etc.) to the more unusual competitive activities (e.g. dodgeball, stair race, SWAT, ultimate firefighter etc.). The fortnight of the WPFG is set to be unforgettable and exciting, bringing thrills and exhilaration to all those who attend.

Where better to book your accommodation for the World Police and Fire Games than here at Maranatha House, a WPFG Approved accommodation provider. Time is running out fast until the event kicks off, where better to book your stay than in the guesthouse that has been granted the Trip Advisor Award for Excellence for the 2nd year running. Not only is Maranatha House in an excellent location – close to the city centre and main tourist attractions while also close to many of the grounds where WPFG events will take place. We also offer our guests parking facilities, free wi-fi, cooked and continental breakfast, and a guest lounge for groups to use.

Our staff are friendly and efficient and will do their utmost to provide you with the best quality and service during your stay.

A Weekend in Belfast….

Planning a weekend in Belfast this year?

This month we have decided to offer some suggestions of activities, places to eat and drink in order for you to make the most out of our great wee city.

First things first, be sure to book your room in Maranatha House (of course!!) in advance to avoid disappointment. Here we offer free wi-fi, fantastic breakfast, parking and a great location as well as helpful and friendly staff.

After a long day of travelling we suggest you check out some of our local pubs. We recommend the Errigle Inn – easy to get to from Maranatha House, live music on set nights, good food and efficient staff. Relax and have the craic over a few drinks before returning to your room here in the guesthouse.

Get up for a delicious breakfast the following morning to fuel up for the day. We highly recommend then taking a black taxi tour of the city (especially if you have never been to Belfast before). Our receptionist will be more than happy to arrange this for you and you will be picked up from the guesthouse and dropped off wherever you want to go. The tour offers a fantastic insight into the history of Belfast, with a large focus on The Troubles. All of the drivers providing these tours will regail fascinating stories of incidents past and bring you to see the infamous Belfast murals and peace walls. The black taxi tour is certainly something you will remember long after you depart from Belfast.

Once the tour is over, ask the driver to drop you off in Stranmillis, on the south side of the city. This is the student area of Belfast. We highly recommend going to ‘Got Milk?’ for a milkshake. Here they have almost every flavour of milkshake imaginable. Think of any chocolate bar or sweets and they will have it as a milkshake. Once purchased take your milkshake and exit left down the hill. You are now walking towards Queen’s University – an astounding beautiful building. Beside Queens is Belfast Botanic Gardens. It is well worth taking a stroll through the gardens (while enjoying your delicious milkshake) and perhaps sitting for a while to bask in the beauty of the gardens if time permits. If milkshakes and gardens are not your thing, we recommend taking a walk through the Ulster Museum (located beside the Botanical Gardens). Entrance into the museum is free and we can personally attest to it remaining on of our favourite places in Belfast.

So now its lunch-time! There is a plethora of great cafe’s and restaurants in Belfast. If we have to decide on recommendations for one weekend in the city, however we suggest Soul Food on the Ormeau Road for healthy food of very high quality. All of the cakes and traybakes in Soul Food are homemade and delicious! The cafe is located no more than 15 minutes walk from Maranatha House – a delightful walk through the park – should you wish to return to the guesthouse for a mid-afternoon nap (you are on holidays after all).

If you find yourself full of energy and longing for further activities to occupy you until dinner time we suggest heading to the Titanic Belfast. Jump in a taxi or alternatively take a jaunt down along the path by the river (this will take about 50mins). With over 800,000 visitors in its first year, the Titanic Tour is sure to be very interesting and undoubtedly memorable. It will take you approx. 3 hours to get through the centre so make sure you’re time is budgeted well.

You shouldn’t have any problems getting a taxi from outside the exhibition centre back to Maranatha House where you may wish to return to at this stage to change and get ready for dinner.
If you are a fan of seafood, we highly recommend Mourne’s Seafood Bar located in the city centre. Mourne’s is nationally and internationally recognised for excellence. For this reason, you will need to book your table in advance. During the summer months you may need to book at least 2-3 weeks in advance, especially for a weekend night. It will be worth it! Pop next door to Kelly’s Cellars for pre/post dinner drinks. Kelly’s boasts to being one of the oldest bars in Belfast and you will quite often find yourself walking through the door to a traditional Irish music session. Up for a night out in the city? Head for the Cathedral Quarter for your choice of excellent bars and pubs.

Sunday morning should be spent at St. George’s Market. This is a wonderful craft market that takes place every weekend. A stroll through the market is a real feast for the sense. Butchers, bakers, candlestickmakers – you’ll find them all here. As well as a music stall trading vinyls, antiques stalls, vietnamese scarves and art, 2nd hand books, and more. Amidst all this trading is live music set up in the centre of the market where you can buy a coffee sit and listen to the music and bustle and people-watch.

From here it is a 3 minute walk to the city centre (city hall). Perhaps take the opportunity now to do some shopping. We recommend heading to Victoria Square Shopping Centre. Once you’ve had your fill of the shops head to Muriels for lunch. The style here is a little boudouir and chic, cosy and comfortable. The food is excellent (we especially recommend the mussels) and they offer an extensive cocktail menu. If you are finding it difficult to choose off the menu, ask about their cocktail of the month. It is usually safe to assume that this will be delicious.

If there is a game on, head out to Ravenhill Stadium after lunch to catch an Ulster rugby game. Home to Ulster Rugby, an afternoon in Ravenhill is a great day out. Good fun, good entertainment, and a bar (for those of you wanting a pint). Once again you are within minutes of Maranatha House should you wish to return to your room before dinner.

For night number 2’s dinner we recommend D’arcy’s at Shaftesbury Square. Reasonably priced, the food here is beyond excellent in terms of both taste and value. Quite often, D’arcy’s will have a deal on if you order before 7pm. The food is hearty and wholesome (just what you might need after a late night on the town the night before). Pop next door to Lavery’s bar for a post-dinner drink. You will never have a problem getting a taxi from directly outside the door here.

As you can surmise from the length of this entry, our wee city of Belfast has lots to offer and we found it very difficult to pick out only certain things to recommend to our readers. Perhaps in future entries we will discuss topics separately – restaurants, pubs, outdoor activities, indoor activities. Be assured, in any case, that should you come to stay with us – be it for a day, a weekend, a week, or a month – we will not run out of recommendations and suggestions for you!! We look forward to welcoming you…..

Time flies…

Sorry we haven’t been keeping this blog up to date, but we’ve been a little busy. We have redecorated several of the rooms, insulated the house from top to bottom, come up with a new menu, attended a tour of just about every tourist attraction in Belfast, started offering dinners in the evenings, designed a new exhibit for the dining room wall and checked a few guests in & out in the meantime….phew………..we’re exhausted!

4 Minute drive to Titanic Museum, Northern Ireland’s No. 1 attraction…

Maranatha House are delighted to be the closest Guesthouse to Titanic Belfast, which has just been recognised as Northern Ireland’s No.1 tourist attraction….

New Year Offer

Happy 2013!! For the month of January only, we are reducing all of our rooms, call us on 02890 460 200 or book directly here to avail of this special offer. Until 31st January 2013, our single rooms are £40 per night, doubles and twins are £60 per night, all prices include a full breakfast. Limited availability on certain dates but enquire for details.

Belfast Christmas Market

Not long to go now until the Christmas Market comes to town!!
Running from 17th November to 20th December in the grounds of the City Hall and featuring dozens of market stalls offering a stunning range of crafts, food and decorations from across Europe and beyond including Dutch, French and Irish cheeses, German sausages and beer, toasted baguettes and crepes, pastries and cakes, plants and flowers.
We love it every year and look forward to welcoming our regular visitors back to Maranatha House, some who come to enjoy the market and others who come to sell their speciality foods and gifts.

It’s only been 7 years….

It may have been 7 years since we signed on the dotted line and took over as the new owners of Maranatha House, but we have only just found the time to update our “About Us” page……

“Us is… Dennis and Kelly Bree. Our friends are bored of us talking about Maranatha House and our desire to welcome new guests, try out new ideas, experiment in the kitchen and generally aim to please each and every new arrival to the house. Belfast born and bred, but with several trips around the world each and a passion to bring home new ideas to Northern Ireland, Maranatha House is our main home and, we hope, yours during your stay in Belfast.

This is us looking a little more glamorous than usual, it does help when you take away the aprons…..”

Corporate Rates…

Call us directly on 02890 460200 or drop us an email to info@maranathahouse.com to discuss short or long term corporate rates. We can provide bed and breakfast accommodation as well as conference facilities and meeting rooms. Why not have your breakfast meeting here and discuss the latest project over coffee and scones, we are more than happy to accommodate and offer very reasonable rates.