John and Martina Sheedy run one of the west of Ireland's best-loved small hotels - it offers some of the most luxurious accommodation and the best food in the area, yet it still has the warm ambience and friendly hands-on management which make a hotel special.
The sunny foyer has a comfortable seating area - and an open fire for chillier days - and the cosy bar is just the place to snuggle down with an after dinner drink and explore the rather fine range of interesting Irish whiskeys including Midleton Rare.
All the bedrooms are spacious and individually designed to a high standard with generous beds, quality fabrics and elegant, quietly soothing colours; comfort is the priority, so bathrooms have power showers as well as full baths and there are bathrobes, luxury toiletries and CD music systems, digital flat screen LED tvs, in addition to the usual room facilities.
Fine food and warm hospitality remain constant qualities however - and an original feature has already enhanced the exterior in a way that is as useful as it is pleasing to the eye: the gardens in front of the hotel have been developed to include a rose garden, fruit trees, and also a potager (formal vegetable and herb garden), which supplies leeks, Swiss chard, beetroot and cabbage to the kitchen: a delightful and practical feature.
A stay here is always a treat.
Walking Breaks, Cliffs of Moher Breaks and Painting Breaks available. Bikes available for guests to use and a there is a lock up shed for guests who bring their own bike.
Rooms 11 (3 junior suites, 2 with separate bath & shower, 1 for disabled, all no smoking); children welcome. B&B €44.50-65 pps, ss €25. Free broadband wi/fi throughout.
As elsewhere in this charming small hotel, relaxation is at the heart of a dining experience that is informal yet very special.
Reading John’s delicious menus is a treat in itself, perhaps cosily tucked in beside the fire in the bar on chilly evenings. John has always sourced as much as possible locally and reading about these special foods and their suppliers puts everything in context, making you feel you’ve been introduced to a whole new circle of friends in the area.
The restaurant is a warm and welcoming room, comfortably set up for the enjoyment of both good food and good company - and, beginning with a little complimentary treat set out from the kitchen to welcome you, everything John cooks just seems so appetising.
His style is a pleasing combination of classic and modern Irish cooking, so you may expect interesting dishes made from the freshest of local seafood, lamb with the unique flavour of its life on the Burren and tender Irish Hereford beef: everything is cooked to order, every dish is beautifully presented, and vegetarian dishes are equally appealing
Local farmhouse cheeses from the Burren may be tempting, or you might finish with a gorgeous speciality dessert. John makes everything from scratch - breads, biscuits, jams and preserves - and desserts will include a selection of his home-made ice creams (vanilla and strawberry, plus mango sorbet perhaps) and perhaps a refreshing old-fashioned lemon posset with fresh fruit sorbet, such as raspberry, and crisp shortbread.
Under Martina's direction, service is gently paced, professional and unobtrusive, and a carefully selected wine list perfectly complements the cooking. And prices are very fair for the outstanding quality of the whole experience - all of which makes Sheedy's restaurant a must-visit destination for all visitors to the area who love their food (non-residents are made very welcome).
The same high standards apply at breakfast when an extensive menu is on offer: delicious fresh fruit compôtes and juices; great home-made bread and pancakes; a cheese plate, a fresh fish dish, as well as classic Burren smoked salmon with scrambled eggs. Simply gorgeous.