Home Turned Hotel

A Luxurious Ireland Abode


September 2, 2014
Words by Courtney Kellar
Photos courtesy of Courtney Cox

While we just recently celebrated the launch of our Fall/Winter 2014 issue, we’re already looking forward to spring. With so many amazing destinations already lined-up to be featured, it’s hard to wait. So, we’re offering up a preview of one of the stunning properties for which you’ll find a full write-up and review in our Spring/Summer 2015 issue.

Having been to Ireland once before, and quickly falling in love, I couldn’t wait to go back to the Emerald Isle. On my previous visit, I lounged on the coast of County Clare in a new property made to look old – charming and luxurious, but recently placed on its sea-lined perch. On my more recent jaunt, I had the pleasure of staying in a truly historic Ireland home-away-from-home: Ballyfin Demesne in County Laois.

The Relais & Chateaux property is a 5-star country house hotel set at the foot of the Slieve Bloom Mountains. After eight years of meticulous restoration, Ballyfin reopened in 2011 with just fifteen luxuriously appointed rooms for the 600 acre property. The house dates back to the 1820s and is filled with priceless antiques, charming suites and more than enough charming staff to make your destination wedding or honeymoon dreams a reality.

Downton Abbey fans will rejoice and revel at the chance to not only see how the other half lived, but to spend a few days in their well-polished shoes. True to a historic country house, activities abound in the form of horseback riding, carriage rides, fishing, shooting and much more. Hosting your wedding here would be worthy of royalty and you can rest assured your guests would each be treated as king or queen of the castle.

For more information on saying “I do” at Ballyfin Demesne or visiting this gorgeous part of Ireland, stay tuned for the full review in Destination I Do’s Spring/Summer 2015 issue or visit ballyfin.com.

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