The former home of the Earls of Dunraven, this magnificent neo-Gothic mansion is set in 900 acres on the banks of the River Maigue in Adare.
Its' splendid chandeliered drawing room and the glazed cloister of the dining room look over formal box-hedged gardens towards the Robert Trent Jones golf course.
Other grand public areas include the Gallery, named after the Palace of Versailles, with its unique 15th century choir stalls and fine stained glass windows. Luxurious bedrooms have individual hand-carved fireplaces, fine locally-made mahogany furniture, cut-glass table lamps and impressive marble bathrooms with powerful showers over huge bathtubs.
A clubhouse in the grounds has full conference facilities, and there’s a “golf village” of two and four bedroom townhouses which provide a comfortable accommodation option for longer stays, large groups and families; similarly, “The Villas” deluxe serviced residences sleep up to eight guests.
Conference/banqueting (200/160); business centre, free broadband wi/fi. Leisure centre, swimming pool, spa treatments; beauty salon; hairdressing. Shop. Golf (18), equestrian; fishing; walking; cycling. Garden. Children welcome (under 12s free in parents room, cots available without charge, baby sitting arranged). No pets.
Rooms 62 (1 state room, 5 suites, 8 junior suites, 15 ground floor rooms, all no smoking); Room rate from about €296. Also townhouses, carriage house & villas (total 246). Lift. 24 hour room service. No SC. Open all year.
Oak Room Restaurant:
This beautifully appointed appointed restaurant provides a fine setting for Mark Donohue’s modern classical cuisine, which is cooking based on seasonal produce, including vegetables from the estate’s own gardens.
Irish artisan and other local ingredients feature, and Mark (a recent Féile Bia Chef of the Year) offers enticing à la carte menus, including some imaginative vegetarian dishes such as deep fried Bluebell Falls goats cheese with vegetable picalilli salad, and a main course of butternut squash gnocchi with a smoked Gubbeen soufflé, offered on the main menu along with well-balanced selection of treats.
Medallions of rabbit and black pudding with seared scallop, parsley mash & shallot cream is an unusual speciality starter, for example, and main course choices may include a s duo of Irish pork, fillet and braised belly, served with sweet potatoes and roast apples.
An 8-course Tasting Menu (€72) features favourites from the à la carte and includes some surprises too; an accompanying wine pairing is also offered (and good value at €38).
A predictably high-end wine list includes some unusual wines (a Pomerol Pétrus 1970, at about €4,450, for example) but there’s a sprinkling of affordable bottles, and quite a few by the glass and half bottle.
Overall, for the quality of food and service, and the beautiful surroundings, the Oak Room offers good value – especially when compared to high end Dublin restaurants.