Sam and Evelyn Hazlett were restaurateurs and love good food and feeding people. The generous breakfasts at Ash-Rowan Lodge, a comfortable, friendly, informal place, keep you going throughout the day. We noted nine solid dishes on the menu, including mushrooms on toast, flambéed in sherry and with cream, kedgeree in ramekin dishes with cream and a 'hint of cumin', and variations on the Ulster Fry theme, depending on how faint-hearted you are feeling. The Hazletts' attractive Victorian family house stands in a tree-lined Belfast residential road and the welcoming hosts are especially popular with classical musicians making guest appearances with the Ulster Orchestra, most probably because of the homely atmosphere.
Each bedroom is decorated in an individual style: they are all comfortable and full of bits and pieces, as is the entire house. All have dressing gowns, and crisp Irish linens on beds. Some have antiques, some newer wicker furniture. Prettier, quite spacious rooms at the top of the house have sloping attic ceilings, old white crocheted bedspreads, armchairs, plants, mixed colours. There are plenty of family 'things' in corridors and on landings: books, ornaments, a bird cage, old mirrors and porcelain, and dried flowers. A conservatory extension was being planned when we visited; it may now already be built and nicely filling up with 'things'.