Every man dreams of his own castle, so if Ireland is your destination, Dromoland Castle is the place to stay. We just happened to hear about this place from non-other than Bono’s wife Ali. After one too many drinks at her EDUN clothing presentation, we asked where she would stay in Ireland (if her own mansion were occupied) and she whispered, Dromoland!
Eight miles from Shannon, this much ballyhooed resort is a great spot to either kick off a tour of Ireland or spend a week ensconced in armored glory. Although the O’Brian family has had a castle on this property since around 1014, the current residence was built in the Georgian period and much of the interior from that time still remains.
There is much more than Downton Abbey interiors to lure guests to this little slice of nirvana. There is championship golf, archery, horseback riding, five star fishing, biking, kayaking, clay shooting, tennis and falconry (check out the awesome Hawk Walk experience). But worry not, you can always order a whiskey and pass out in front of the roaring fire for the day, just don’t drool on the tartan blanket.
Dining here isn’t too shabby either. Potato famine jokes aside, the Earl of Thomond restaurant serves Irish beef and salmon and even local oysters. And the bar is stocked high with Irish booze and ‘The Black Magic’ as Guinness is locally known.
On an eco note the castle has achieved its five-year goal of operation with net carbon neutrality and was awarded the Green Fáilte Platinum Award for 2011. In 2012 it was once again named one of the top resorts in Europe in Travel + Leisure’s “World’s Best Awards 2012.”
Oh and if your lady isn’t up for adventure, there is a five star spa tucked away on the property so go on, go forth and release your inner Celtic warrior, just be back for dinner.