Fodor's Expert Review Adare Manor Hotel
Limerick Rd., Adare, Co. Limerick, Ireland Fodor's Choice
Play king or queen for a day at this spectacular, recently overhauled, Victorian Gothic mansion, once the abode of the earls of Dunraven and still a wonderland, thanks to 840 well-manicured acres outside and the 36-foot-high, 100-foot-long Minstrels' Gallery with its decorated ceiling and stained-glass windows inside. This must be the most memorable breakfast spot in all of Ireland; afternoon tea is also served here by appointment, while dinner in the Oak Room offers the best of Ireland's artisanal foods in chef Michael Tweedie's tasting menu. The castellated mansion is enormous, with stone arches and oak wainscotting, but the judicious furnishing of public spaces, and an open fire in the drawing room make it feel cozy. The hotel reopened in late 2017 after a major refurbishment, which moved weddings and conferences to a separate on-site venue in a discreetly added new wing, and added a cinema, spa (La Mer facials), and pool to the hotel. The four suites in the original house are the most sumptuous, but all rooms have superking-size beds, luxurious drapes (electrically operated), large bathrooms, and a chandelier. Views of the parkland and the River Maigue are relaxing and privacy is ensured, as only hotel guests are allowed on the grounds. Children as well as adults can enjoy falconry, archery, and walking trails on-site, and the informal Carriage House restaurant. Book ahead for afternoon tea in the Gallery at Adare Manor. It may look pricey at €50 a head (children €25), but you will need neither lunch nor dinner that day.
- fully updated Gothic mansion
- one of Ireland's best golf courses
- excellent amenities including a cinema, spa, and pool
- off the beaten track as a touring base