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Fodor's Ireland 2014
Radisson Blu Farnham Estate Hotel
Radisson Blu Farnham Estate Hotel Review
A blend of stone, wood, and glass, the Farnham Estate—one of the top spots in the Midlands to detox and purify—exudes the promise of contentment, styling itself as a "playground for the senses" as well as offering a superb choice of dining options. Extended from the original big house (dating from 1664), the hotel comes with 1,300 acres that includes a golf course and mature grounds. The Botanica Restaurant offers Irish cuisine centering on meat and fish, while lighter meals are served at the Botanica Bar and in the Wine Goose Cellar Bar on the lower ground floor, formerly the estate staff quarters. Healthy options are available at the Pear Tree Restaurant in the spa. Guest rooms and corridors are in relaxing neutral themes of beige, silvery greens, and sky blue, echoing the tones in the gardens and grounds. What steals the show however, is the spa, and in particular the Laconium, which re-creates the atmosphere of a Roman sauna. Afterwards, the Kneipp Walk combines the interaction of warm and cold water; it was named after a German naturopath, Sebastian Kneipp, who knew a thing or two about hydrotherapy and how to stimulate your metabolism. The snail shower, salt grottos, and reflexology footbath are also recommended. Ask at reception for a booklet outlining five nature trails through woods and around lakes, and make sure you see the magnificent Monterey pine in the center of the parkland. Pros: the revitalizing effect of the spa leaves a healthy golden afterglow; retreat to nature in the cathedral-like silences of the grounds. Cons: slow service at peak times; a danger of spoiling yourself too much in the fab Laconium.
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