Creeper covered, as if under a Sleeping Beauty spell, the gorgeous Victorian castle-manor of Abbeyglen sits framed by towering trees on a height above Clifden town—if time hasn't completely stopped here, it has certainly slowed down, but that's just the way the relaxed guests want it. Surrounded by gardens with waterfalls and streams, Abbeyglen was built in 1832 by John D'Arcy, the founder of Clifden. Inside, guest rooms vary in size and decor, some with wooden floors, some with gas open fires, some with four-poster beds. Insist on a front room when booking if you enjoy great views. Even though it's a castle, it is also a fun place to stay, owned by the famously hospitable Hughes brothers, Paul and Brian. Complimentary afternoon tea is served in the bar, effortlessly giving way to evening drinks, as the piano player strikes up. Beware Gilbert the parrot, who has the run of reception: he wolf-whistles, but he also bites.
Sky Rd., Clifden, Co. Galway, Ireland
Dec 5, 2012
We sent two nights at Abbeyglen and loved it. Our room was large with wood floors, fireplace, and view of the front gardens. There was no need to wander down into Clifden for dinner as the restaurant offered a fixed price menu for dinner and dinner was excellent as was the buffet breakfast. Peat fires in the lounge and bar areas offered a cozy atmosphere. The owners are great and the hotel has a house party appeal. We hated to leave!