Sligo’s oldest inhabited house has been home to the Cooper family for 350 years. Set in magnificent park and farmland, this is a proper castle, with a huge portico leading to a covered stone stairway that sweeps up to an impressive hall, where an enormous log fire always burns.
Everything is on a very large scale, and it is greatly to the credit of the present owners, Charles and Mary Cooper, that they have achieved the present level of renovation and comfort since they took it on in a sad state of disrepair in 1989 - and they have always been generous with the heating.
Ground floor reception areas include a comfortably furnished double drawing room with two fireplaces (where light food, including afternoon tea, is served). There is a lift and also disabled toilets, but the layout of the castle makes it difficult for elderly people or wheelchair users to get around; a phone call ahead to ensure the (very willing) staff are available to help would be wise.
The dining room is a very beautiful room with stunning plasterwork and its Knockmuldowney Restaurant is open to non-residents for dinner, and lunch on Sunday.
There are many idiosyncrasies - in bedrooms, for example – but this slightly eccentric place has got real heart; do, however, beware of times when very inexpensive offers are available, as it can be noisy and children are not always kept under control.