Discover the Irish castles giving Cinderella's palace a run for its money.
With its lush green landscapes, majestic coastal cliffs, and villages steeped in captivating folklore, Ireland is an irresistible vacation destination for all. When we discovered that Ireland also lays claim to historic castles ingeniously transformed into some of the country's most luxurious resorts, we started packing our glass slippers for our next fairytale adventure.
Whether you're exploring Dublin's lively streets, ambling along the breathtaking Cliffs of Moher, or unraveling the mysteries of the Giant's Causeway, there's something undeniably enchanting about an Irish getaway. But it's absolutely Happily Ever After if you stay in one of these Irish Castles.
Lauded with a prestigious five-star rating by Forbes Travel Guide 2023, Adare Manor stands proudly as a pinnacle of luxurious living and an emblem of Irish hospitality. With a heartfelt warmth akin to a home away from home, every detail is meticulously tailored to its guests, skillfully executed by a world-class staff renowned for its personalized and intimate service. Nestled within 840 acres of captivating parkland, Adare Manor offers a sanctuary of exploration, inviting visitors to immerse themselves in its breathtaking surroundings. Culinary delights await at the Michelin-starred Oak Room, where Head Chef Michael Tweedie crafts a seasonal menu that beautifully captures the essence of Ireland through artisan ingredients. The manor also boasts a magnificent golf course, ensuring a well-rounded experience for guests.
Exemplifying the renowned Irish hospitality, Ballyfin Demesne offers a unique and luxurious living experience. Tucked away within a vast 614-acre estate, the castle boasts just 20 bedrooms and a private Gardeners Cottage, ensuring an intimate and exclusive retreat amidst nature's splendor. Surrounded by the picturesque beauty of the Slieve Bloom Mountains, one of Ireland's least explored regions, Ballyfin provides a haven for nature enthusiasts, with their attentive butlers guiding guests to suitable walking trails during their stay. The castle's romantic and tranquil ambiance makes it the perfect venue for an exclusive gathering of loved ones. As guests venture into the surrounding landscapes, they can savor the delights of a traditional gourmet picnic basket thoughtfully prepared by the castle's team of chefs, featuring produce harvested from the estate's eight-acre walled gardens and nearby woodlands. For an al fresco dining experience, Ballyfin Castle also offers the option of enjoying a delightful meal on the main house's terrace or at the picnic house, both offering panoramic views of the stunning surroundings.
BELLE ISLE CASTLE
Perched upon a stunning private estate of 400 acres, Belle Isle Castle exudes fairytale luxury on the shimmering edge of Fermanagh's waters. This acclaimed castle hotel in Northern Ireland offers an unmatched opportunity to indulge in sheer extravagance. With 13 opulent bedrooms accommodating up to 26 guests, this enchanting estate ensures an extraordinary retreat for large groups, brimming with character and warmth to welcome families and beloved pets alike. A wealth of activities awaits, from designated walking trails to fishing, boating, archery, and clay pigeon shooting, catering to every interest. As the day winds down, the Belle Isle Bistro, hidden within the Belle Isle Cookery School, invites guests to savor delightful breakfast and dinner offerings, completing a truly unforgettable experience.
With a remarkable heritage spanning over 10,000 years, Blackwater Castle is a medieval castle available for private hire. Brimming with captivating tales, this illustrious estate is a living testament to its unique cultural legacy. A stay at the castle seamlessly blends history with luxurious comfort, offering nine suites accommodating 23 people, along with garden apartments and a dormitory for an additional 47 guests, making it the perfect destination for a historical castle wedding or a memorable family trip. Just a short distance away, the charming village of Castletownroche, with its own 19th-century history, beckons with amenities such as a supermarket, pharmacy, beautician, and four delightful pubs where visitors can savor brews and meals.
Located just a stone's throw from Cork city, Castlemartyr is a luxurious five-star hotel, designed in the style of an 18th-century manor adjacent to the ruins of an ancient 800-year-old castle. Embraced by the serenity of nature, with calming streams, a vibrant lake teeming with wildlife, and lush gardens, the hotel offers a tranquil retreat during the day while the allure of the city beckons in the evening. Guests can indulge in an array of activities, including top-notch sporting facilities for kayaking, archery, and clay pigeon shooting, as well as family-friendly options like an indoor pool and outdoor excursions to the nearby Fota Wild Life Park and Leahy’s Open Farm. A highlight of the experience awaits at the Michelin-starred Terre, where Chef Patron Vincent Crepel masterfully blends contemporary French cuisine and Asian flavors into an unhurried tasting menu, offering an intimate dining experience in Terre's open kitchen with a dynamic interaction with Chef Crepel and his team.
LOUGH ESKE CASTLE
Nestled amidst the serene beauty of Lough Eske and the untamed Blue Stack Mountains, Lough Eske Castle Hotel promises an unparalleled experience of refined luxury. Earning prestigious accolades, the hotel boasts a dining delight with expert chefs crafting fresh, locally sourced cuisine in three restaurants, each menu thoughtfully curated to reflect the season's best. Historical splendor seamlessly blends with modern comfort, making Lough Eske Castle an extraordinary retreat surrounded by picturesque landscapes.