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LUXURY HOTEL INSIDER

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The Luxury Hotel Insider: Exclusive luxury hotel deals, features and special rates from the luxury hotel experts at Five Star Alliance.
Named one of Tripbase's Best Luxury Travel Blogs for 2011, below are Five Star Alliance's newest articles featuring exclusive information on luxury hotels worldwide including special offers and deals at the world's best hotels.

| By: Rachael Weir

Destination Spotlight: 5 Irish Castle Hotels

As St. Patrick's Day is just around the corner, Ireland is on everyone's mind. While cities like Dublin, Galway, and Cork have much to offer, Ireland's Castle Hotels offer one-of-a-kind experiences like on-site falconries and clay pigeon shooting. Many of the estates also have formal gardens, world class golf courses, and full-service spas infused with Irish influences. Plus, the fine dining and afternoon teas at castle hotels provide travelers with the opportunity to live like royalty within exclusive settings, sure to create special memories.

In this edition of Destination Spotlight, we highlight 5 Top Irish Castle Hotels offering luxe accommodations, gourmet restaurants, spa, golf, and more. 

5. Lough Eske Castle

Lough Eske Castle

Once the home of the powerful 14th-century clans of the Donegal and the O'Donnells, Lough Eske Castle  is an award-winning historic hotel with a vital role in the story of County Donegal and Ireland. Set at the lake's edge, the castle hotel provides a range of accommodations options from Castle Suites with traditional elegance, the Garden Suites with contemporary styling to the stables converted into courtyard rooms with country charm. Nestled in the castle's garden, the spa offers a range of pampering, restorative, and natural treatments. 

Check availability at Lough Eske Castle

4. Waterford Castle

Waterford Castle Hotel

Located on a private island, Waterford Castle offers the finest traditions of Ireland including a falconry where guests can schedule private experiences to fly a trained hawk above the hotel's grounds. There's also clay pigeon shooting and training available for all skill levels, archery, tennis, and croquet. Guests can stroll the Island Trails to see native wildlife such as fox, swan, deer, hare, and pheasant, or arrange for a Waterford Castle picnic basket to dine amidst the property's 310-acre island.

Check availability at Waterford Castle

3. Ashford Castle 

Guest room at Ashford Castle

Dating back to 1228 on the shores of Lough Corrib, Ashford Castle is one of the most luxurious castle hotels in Ireland. Once the estate of the Guinness family, guests enter the property through grand stone gates. Following an extensive refurbishment, the castle's 83 rooms, suites and the Hideaway Cottage each offer traditional elegance with custom carpets, bespoke beds, feature lighting, unique works of art, Egyptian Cotton bed linens, and the latest modern luxuries. The spa has a full-length relaxation pool with a "Tree of Life" mural, five treatment rooms, steam room, and a range of services. While the property offers four main dining rooms, afternoon tea in the Connaught Room, private wine tastings and dinners in the wine cellars, and creative Irish cuisine throughout the property. 

FIVE STAR ALLIANCE PERK: Guests booking the "5 Star Signature Package" rate or "Best Available Bed and Breakfast" rate will also receive full Irish breakfast daily, an 85 Euro food and beverage credit per room/per stay, complimentary green fees daily, and complimentary WiFi. 

Plus, this property offers exclusive 2019 FIVE STAR ALLIANCE SUITE & VILLA PRIVILEGES that can be combined with the FIVE STAR ALLIANCE PERK (if requirements are met). 

2019 FIVE STAR ALLIANCE SUITE & VILLA PRIVILEGES: Guests booking a stay of 2 or more nights in a villa or suite receive lunch or dinner for two, once per stay (minimum value US $100). This offer is valid for stays of at least two nights through December 31, 2019 in the Hideaway or Presidential Suite. 

Check availability at Ashford Castle

2. Dromoland Castle Hotel

Dromoland Castle Hotel

Originally the ancestral home of one of the few families of Gaelic Royalty, Dromoland Castle Hotel blends Old World elegance with contemporary luxuries. Guests arrive with a warm Irish welcome fit for royalty, and once settled in they can stroll the 450-acre estate to visit the walled garden, discover the falconry, row out on the lake for a picnic, or tee off on the world class golf course. There's an intimate spa with a variety of rejuvenating treatments, afternoon tea is served by a warm fireplace, and dining at the castle's flagship Earl of Thomond offers an authentic taste of Ireland amidst sparkling chandeliers, Venetian silk, and estate views.

FIVE STAR ALLIANCE PERK: Guests booking the "5 Star Signature Package" rate or "Stay More Winter Rate" or "Midweek Special Rate" will also receive a full Irish Breakfast for each guest daily, complimentary airport transfer from Dromoland Castle to the Shannon Airport, and a guaranteed room upgrade at booking based on availability. 

Check availability at Dromoland Castle Hotel

 

1. Adare Manor Hotel and Golf Resort

Adare Manor Hotel and Golf Resort

In the heart of Adare Village, Adare Manor Hotel and Golf Resort is a luxe castle hotel with a movie theater, full-service spa, championship golf, falconry, archery, and clay pigeon shooting. Amidst woodlands, walled gardens, and medieval ruins, the 840-acre estate provides guests with a world-class setting and personalized service. Taking its name from the nearby village of Adare, which is known for thatched roof cottages and antique shops, the retreat offers visitors to step back in time within a grand setting filled with the latest luxuries.  

FIVE STAR ALLIANCE PERK: Guests booking with Five Star Alliance receive full breakfast for each guest daily in Minstrels Gallery, and once per stay an afternoon tea for 2 guests in the Minstrels Gallery. Also, the following amenities are provided subject to availability at the time of check-in and check-out: room upgrade, early check-in, and late check-out.

Check availability at Adare Manor Hotel and Golf Resort


| By: K. Clare Johnson

Solis Lough Eske
Solis Lough Eske is ameticulously restored 17th century luxury castle hotel nestled in the Irish countryside. It offers many different activities, packages and special offers. Can't decide which to choose?

Choose the Experience Solis Package! This package include:

- Dinner for two in Cedars Restaurant
- Overnight accommodation in a luxurious Courtyard Room (based on two people sharing)
- Complimentary use of Spa Solís Thermal Suite
- Complimentary use of our heated indoor pool and fitness centre
- Full Irish breakfast for two

Lough Eske Castle is the ideal base for exploring the rugged beauty of Ireland's incredibly scenic North West region.  The Castle is also located within a short distance of the 7 wonders of the Northwest - a must see for all new visitors to the region. Walking enthusiasts can embark on the world renowned and globally popular International Appalachian Trail, part of which surrounds Lough Eske Castle in the form of the Bluestack Mountains. Or join Executive Chef in the castle's kitchen for a cooking demonstration followed by a glass of sparkling Prosecco and a four course dinner in Cedars Restaurant. Guests can also spend time at the full service Spa, which is located at the water's edge of Lough Eske.

Book your own adventure at Solis Lough Eske Castle >>


| By: Oksana Balytsky

We understand that no one aims to come in second place; there is no recognition for mediocrity. We at Five Star Alliance understand better than anyone the importance of offering the most luxurious resorts in the world, so we notice what’s going on in the industry, and it matters to us, because it matters to you. We'd like to welcome you to our new blog series, Best of the Best, where we’ll be featuring the best and most luxurious resorts in various categories. But don’t take our word for it. These resorts have been recognized as the best in the business by the prestigious World Luxury Hotel Awards, so you can relax and stop worrying about your upcoming trip, knowing that it truly will be the best of the best.

Today’s featured locale is the Solis Lough Eske, recipient of the Best Luxury Countryside Hotel award in 2011, or should we say "best castle"? Located just outside of Donegal Town, Ireland, the Solis Lough Eske Castle is on the water’s edge of Lough Eske and surrounded by the incredible Blue Stack Mountains. Like escaping into a fairytale, the Solis Lough Eske Castle has its spa facility located in the castle garden, providing you with every opportunity to relax and take in the natural beauty of Ireland. Looking for a thrill? The Solis Lough Eske Castle offers some of the best hiking, mountain biking, and surfing in all of Ireland. Whether you’re looking for some peace and quiet or an adventure, the Solis Lough Eske Castle is the perfect and best destination for an escape into the magnificent countryside of Ireland.