Catch the right sunset, and this is one of the most enchanting hideaways in Ireland . . . or perhaps we mean Sweden: this place is so stylishly modern and light-filled, thanks to all the orange cedarwood and plate-glass windows, that the locale could easily be Scandinavian. The lake here, however, is Killinure Lough and Wineport Lodge, Ireland's first "wine hotel" began life as a boathouse. In the restaurant, fine vintages and new Irish brews accompany such mouthwatering offerings as baked fillet of halibut, pork belly, or zucchini and Parmesan boxty (potato cake). Guest rooms are minimalist but stylishly adorned with leopard-skin prints and goose-down duvets. If you feel like splurging ask for the Champagne Suite spread over two floors with a mezzanine floating bedroom. All rooms face the setting sun and look out over the placid waters of the lough. The welcoming reception area has a real log fire, comfy seats, and easy-on-the-eye mauve carpeting to complete the relaxing effect.
Glasson, Athlone, Co. Westmeath, Ireland