Undoubtedly one of the most delightful and superbly comfortable Georgian houses in Ireland, this sturdy granite mansion was built to withstand the rigours of a Sligo winter but it’s a warm and friendly place.
Peacocks wander elegantly on the croquet lawns (and roost in the splendid trees around the house at night) making this lovely place, home of the O’Hara family since it was built in 1774, a particularly perfect country house.
In immaculate order from top to bottom, the house not only has the original 18th century furniture but also some fascinating features, notably an unusual Victorian free-standing rolltop bath complete with fully integrated cast-iron shower ‘cubicle’ and original brass rail and fittings, all in full working order. Luxurious rooms are wonderfully comfortable and have phones and tea/coffee making facilities.
Simon O’Hara has taken over management of the house from his parents, Brian and Lindy, and the house runs with the seamless hospitality born of long experience; this includes the kitchen which is now in the capable hands of Simon's partner, Christina McCauley, who had worked alongside Lindy since 2004.
There aren’t many places serving up home-produced venison, but the O’Haras' fallow deer farm that visitors pass on the driveway up to the house provides meat for the kitchen as well as restaurants and some speciality shops. So you may well find venison on the dinner menu – roast loin of Coopershill venison with red wine sauce is a favourite - along with seasonal home grown fruit and vegetables, all produced in a beautifully maintained kitchen garden behind the house that is a delight to the eye as well as promising to the taste buds.
Donegal crab tart, spinach & rosemary soup (straight from the garden), baked Donegal cod with a herb crust, and Coopershill Rhubarb compôte & meringues are all typical, served in their lovely dining room where the family silver is used with magnificent insouciance (even at breakfast).
A surprisingly extensive wine list, which has many treats in store, offers four house wines and an exceptionally good choice of half bottles.
Coopershill is well placed for exploring this unspoilt area; a visit to Lissadell House is comfortable day out, and it makes a good base for golfers too, with several championship courses, including Rosses Point within easy range.