At the end of a winding track, a smallish but perfectly proportioned early Georgian house comes into view. Rescued from dereliction, a house like this always demands more to be done, but George Gossip and his late wife Susie worked wonders here, creating a comfortable home out of a ruin.
All the interior walls are clad in panelling - not reclaimed, but new and designed by George. The effect is of timeless elegance and the palette of colours used in the various rooms is strikingly beautiful, especially the intense blue of the dining room.
The bedrooms (two doubles with en-suite bathrooms, plus one twin room with shower only) are spacious, with comfortable beds and lots of light.
While there are some eccentricities, these only add to the special nature of a stay at Ballinderry Park. The books and photographs, old framed silhouettes and antique maps that one finds throughout the house clearly speak of the owners’ own taste, rather than that of some interior designer.
In the evening, guests are invited to help themselves to a drink from a well-stocked cupboard then sit beside the log fire to peruse an interesting wine list that is both short and remarkably good value.
George is not only a thoughtful host but well known in Ireland as a terrific cook, who seeks out the best ingredients (notably game, in season) and dreams up meals that are imaginative but don’t strive for effect. And he will send you on your way with a wonderful breakfast as a warm memory of your stay.
And, before you leave the area, there is a particularly fine ruined abbey awaiting your attention in nearby Kilconnell village.