My Favourite Irish Staycations
Occasionally I find the chance to get away, taking a well needed break from work! I love travelling in Ireland as we’re blessed to have such amazing destinations right here on our doorstep. But inevitably my love of interiors follows me and I tend to holiday in beautiful and sumptuous locations that appeal to my sense of design. But the interior is not the only thing that makes a great destination. An unparalleled service, delicious food, and a remote and untouched landscape truly help me unwind and re-energise, so I can jump straight back into the drivers seat on my return to the office.
Here are three of my favourite staycation destinations.
Trump International Golf Links & Hotel, Co. Clare
I’ve been visiting this Doonbeg based hotel since before its current owner put his stamp on it. But despite its namesake, it remains a beautifully executed purpose built hotel with a wonderful attention to detail that excites me whenever I visit. Facing the Atlantic Ocean and overlooking a beach, the plentiful windows allow for this breath-taking vista to surprise you on every turn. The design ethic is natural, featuring plenty of linen, wicker, crafted wood and ambient lighting
But what makes this place extra special is it is where Cathal chose to propose. The staff could not do enough: champagne, rose petals, a charming suite – we we’re spoilt. And on that night the weather was wild and stormy, the open fire was blazing and, of course, I said yes.
Bellinter House Hotel, Co. Meath
Although this hotel is also housed in an old country manor, the interior appeals more to my love of quirky and modern design. Much of the original finishes have been retained, such as the striking tiled floors and Georgain plasterwork, but the addition of a moody colour pallet (think deep bottle green and aubergine), mid-century furniture and, my favourite, Cole & Son wallpaper, re-ignites my passion for cutting edge interiors every time I stay.
In saying this, it is the roll top bath in my open plan suite that brings me back again and again – I’m surprised I’m able to get out of it at all. Pure bliss.
Gregan’s Castle Hotel, Co. Clare
Another remote and wind swept location, but this time one that is steeped in history. Gregan’s Castle Hotel is in fact a 18th Century manor house that has retained its vintage character while avoiding a pastiche interior. It is a testament to the current owners’ refined tastes as it is full of well-chosen antiques, original art and modern furnishings and finishes that sit together just wonderfully. It is an intimate and personal location, like being in someone’s home, and I love nothing more than passing the time in front of the fire with a cup of tea and a plate full of their homemade shortbread biscuits.
Photos copyright ©Trump International ©Bellinter House © Gregan’s Castle Hotel