Ashford Castle *****

Leaf Island | Cong, Co. Mayo | Ireland |

 

LOCATION

Ashford Castle is a luxury hotel for families nestled along Lake Lough Corrib in a 350-acre setting. Shannon International Airport is a 1.5-hour drive away, while Knock Airport is 40 minutes away. The picturesque towns of Galway, Westport and Connemara are also within 40 minutes. In this region of western Ireland known for its wilderness, huge dark mountains dominate the fields of reddish moors. The many lakes and torrents that traverse the plains, make up a breathtaking landscape. In 2016, the hotel was voted ‘Best Resort in the UK and Ireland’.

 

DESCRIPTION

Built in 1228 as a medieval fortress, with impassable walls and high towers, Ashford Castle is the oldest building of its kind in Ireland. Formerly owned by the Guinness family (world famous for their incomparable beer), the castle was transformed into a luxury hotel in 1939.

Its 83 individually decorated rooms and suites (which include the sumptuous Hideaway Cottage) have been restaured in 2013. A reminder of another time, the rooms present a classic style, marked by historical details restored in the purest Celtic tradition, as well as all the modern comforts of a world-class hotel.

 

GASTRONOMY

Designed for families, the spacious Deluxe Queen Rooms consist of two Queen-size beds and a relaxation area. These rooms dominate the splendid Lough Corrib lake and the flowerbeds of the garden. They can accommodate two adults and two children under 12 years. Moreover, many other rooms are connected together, to facilitate families’ time at the hotel.

Gastronomes will appreciate the traditional cuisine of the George V Restaurant, whose name pays tribute to the visit of the Prince of Wales in 1905. Large crystal chandeliers, precious wooden walls and thick carpet gives the restaurant a cozy atmosphere that is very ‘Irish’. Cuisine is based on the use of local products: fish caught in the lake, game hunted on the plains, matured beef, raised on the neighboring land.

The Dungeon is a less formal restaurant with medieval decoration. Its chef serves refined bistro cuisine that’s centered on Irish gastronomy.

The Prince of Wales Bar is the perfect place to enjoy a pint of Guinness or a good whiskey near the large fireplace.

A multitude of Victorian-style reception rooms are available for guests to share a private dinner or take the famous ‘Afternoon Tea’ in a relaxed atmosphere.

Furthermore, a wine cellar set in a long stone tunnel dating from the 16th century offers the opportunity to indulge in tastings of great wines in a unique atmosphere.

 

ENTERTAINMENT

In addition, the hotel has a 32-seat cinema room, a large library, a billiard room, a cigar terrace, a hairdresser and a state-of-the-art spa. A fitness room, equestrian center and tennis courts will keep you in shape. Parking is free and access has been adapted for disabled guests.

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AT THE CASTLE, THE CHILDREN ARE PRINCES AND PRINCESSES!

Ashford, one of the most magical destinations in the world, is the perfect place to create unforgettable family moments. The hotel truly rolls out the red carpet to accommodate children.

Surprises are hidden in every corner of the castle! Throughout their journey, the children will discover the fabulous stories and tales that trace the history of Ashford. By enjoying various activities with their secret ‘orientation’ card, children collect points to obtain the precious ‘Wolfhounds Badge’, named after the great Irish dogs.

Sometimes getting to a restaurant with children can be a real challenge. The hotel has well understood this and offers children’s menus that are available in all the restaurants. High chairs and cutlery for the little ones are also available. A Children’s Afternoon Tea has even been designed, especially for young travelers to enjoy home-baked pastries and biscuits.

Numerous activities are offered to entertain both young children and adolescents. These activities are available à la carte or in packages. Horse and pony rides, fishing on the Connemara and Lough Corrib lakes or in the river, hawking, cinema, boat trips, archery, cycling, kayaking, clay shooting…the list is endless!

An Xbox and a Playstation are even available on request!

The ‘Lego Menu’ is an exclusive service that allows your child to choose different types of Lego, presented as a menu. After ordering the room service, a butler arrives 10 minutes later in the room, equipped with a large silver tray on which the Lego are presented. Wow!

A book has also been specially designed to encourage children to fall asleep once night has fallen. By flipping through the pages, your child will discover that he or she is, in fact, the main hero!

Slippers and bathrobes for children are available in the bathrooms and a chargeable babysitting service is available on request.

Not to be missed: daily hugs with the Irish Wolfhounds of the hotel, which are friendly and very engaging dogs. And so that your child is not sad to leave their dog at home, our four-legged friends are allowed in the hotel. They even enjoy privileged treatment: dog sitting, baskets of different sizes, grooming, first aid, food and a bowl of fresh water!

 

EXPERIENCES

The beauty and variety of activities offered in the area of Ashford Castle allow you to flourish in the heart of nature, without leaving the site.

If, however, you want to discover the surroundings, we recommend visiting Kylemore Abbey, the seaside towns of Clifden and Westport and not forgetting the sumptuous Connemara.

 

FOR THE PARENTS

Elected ‘Best Spa in Ireland 2016’, the Ashford Castle Spa and fitness room are a favorite place to recharge. It is a true sanctuary of calm and serenity, housed in an iconic architectural monument that offers a view of the lake. The Spa is composed of a relaxation pool, five treatment rooms (including a double cabin for couples), a hammam, a relaxation room and an open terrace overlooking the lake. Treatments are offered a la carte, but there are also packages that offer you several treatments per day, lasting for one or several days. Massages that are energizing, relaxing, anti-aging…the care possibilities are numerous!.

Designed by the famous Irish golf architect Eddie Hackett, the nine-hole golf course surrounds the castle. Golf clubs are available and access to the green is free for hotel residents. A great opportunity to perfect your swing or take introductory courses.

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SERVICES

  • Baby bath
  • Baby chair
  • Baby Club
  • Baby cosmetics
  • Baby cribs
  • Baby phone
  • Baby-sitting
  • Bottle warmers
  • Connecting rooms
  • Crafts
  • Emergency milk bottle
  • Emergency pacifier
  • Games and books
  • Kid's club
  • Kid's excursions
  • Kid's shop
  • Kids' menu
  • Lifeguard
  • Nearby doctor
  • Nearby Hospital
  • Shuttle with baby seat
  • Sports activities
  • Stroller
  • Welcome gift
  • 24/24 check-in
  • Animations
  • Bar
  • Beauty salon
  • Billiards
  • Boutique
  • Business center
  • Cigar cellar
  • Cinema
  • Concierge
  • Conference room
  • Fitness room
  • Golf
  • Hairdresser
  • Hammam
  • Indoor Pool
  • Library
  • Parking
  • Pets friendly
  • Restaurant
  • Room service
  • Sauna
  • Spa
  • Tennis
  • Valet parking
  • Wheelchair access
  • WiFi