Beautifully located and with an expansive view towards the sea, the McGonigle family's large, well managed guesthouse has a charming 18th century house at its heart. It's a delightful place to stay and would make a lovely, moderately priced and relaxing base for a few days of golf, or any of the many activities this stunning area offers - the dramatic 40 foot Glenevin Waterfall is accessed by a path right beside the house, there are magnificent hill walks starting at Glen House, a fine beach, horse riding nearby, and summer festivals celebrating the music and culture of the area.
Martin and Sonia McGonigle have made a lot of improvements since they bought Glen House in 2005 and, not only is everything is immaculate maintained, but there's a feeling of great personal care about the whole property - and they never stand still, so there's always some new project just completed or in the pipeline. Over the last couple of years, for example, they've added an impressive decked area overlooking the river which runs down from The Glenevin Waterfall and - a little traditional thatch-roofed cottage which serves as a sweet shop.
The house is very open and welcoming, partly because Sonia is such a natural host, but also because the charmingly traditional Rose Tea Room is open to everyone and they actively encourage people visiting the waterfall, or just passing by, to come in and enjoy their delicious home baking and light daytime menu. The tea room is in a large conservatory with views of the Urris Hills, and visitors are encouraged to go on into the house too and have a look at the paintings by young local artists that Sonia hangs throughout the ground floor, including a comfortable sitting room where guests can chill out at any time.
The bedrooms include an especially appealing superior room at the front of the original house with a king size bed and magnificent views from two corner windows, but all of the rooms are bright, elegant and have every comfort you could need including TV, tea & coffee trays (with home made biscuits) and generous bathrooms with power showers. Double, twin and family rooms are available and a ground floor room has disabled access.
This really is a special place. The last time we called it happened to be the day of the annual Strawberry Festival, and it was all hands on deck with everyone up to their eyes baking and sandwich making and all of the other preparations in anticipation of hundreds of people arriving, but still as friendly and relaxed as ever; many of Sonia's staff are family members, which makes everyone feel at home - and it was lovely to see much-loved previous owner, Doris Russo, who still lives in the village, giving a hand too. There's a great sense of community, it's part of everything that goes on at Glen House and makes it special. A lovely place to stay.