Northern Ireland Sights

Florence Court

  • House/Mansion/Villa
  • Fodor's Choice

Published 08/11/2015

Fodor's Review

Less known than some showier estates, this three-story Anglo-Irish mansion was built around 1730 for John Cole, father of the 1st Earl of Enniskillen. Topped off about 1760 with its distinctive two flanking colonnaded wings, the central house contains a surfeit of Palladian windows, keystones, and balustrades thanks to, as one architectural historian put it, "the vaingloriousness of a provincial hand." Even more impressive is its bucolic, Baroque setting, as the Cuilcagh Mountains form a wonderful contrast to the shimmering white-stone facade. Showstoppers in terms of design are the Rococo plasterwork ceilings in the dining room; the Venetian Room; and the famous staircase, all ascribed to Robert West, one of Dublin's most famous stuccadores (plasterworkers). For a peek at the "downstairs" world, check out the restored kitchen and other service quarters. You can browse a gift shop and secondhand bookstore; holiday accommodations are available at the Butler's Apartment and Rose Cottage. In July and August, children's tours, lasting 30 minutes, cost £2, and they can also enjoy activities based around the 3rd Earl's fossil collection. A new visitor center, opposite the walled garden, with an outdoor shop sells takeaway snacks.

Sight Information

Address:

11 km (7 miles) south of Enniskillen on A4 and A32, Enniskillen, BT92 1DB, Northern Ireland

Phone:

028-6634–8249

Sight Details:

  • £4 house, £6 grounds
  • Grounds: Nov.–Feb., daily 10–4; Mar.–Oct., daily 10–7. House: Mar. and Oct., weekends 11–5; Apr., daily 11–5; May and Sept., Thurs. and Sat. 11–5; June–Aug., daily 11–5

Published 08/11/2015

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