Rachel Gaffney’s Letter From Texas - Ireland’s Most Luxurious Outdoor Suites

The famous foodie who’s flying the tricolour for us in Texas is smitten by The Woodland Suite Experience at The Montenotte Hotel in Cork City.

Pea and mint soup, a simple and straightforward dish, but when made with the freshest and finest ingredients can create a soup that is not only refreshing but also deeply flavourful as was the bowl I was enjoying last month while visiting The Montenotte Hotel in Cork City. I have always loved this simple form of dining. I’ll let you into a little secret. For years, I have judged hotels and restaurants on the soup they serve me. You see, the soup tells me a lot about the establishment. Can they get the simple things right? Can they tend to the basics? If they cannot, then all the marketing and high thread count sheets simply do not matter.
I was having lunch with my brother in the Panorama Restaurant and Terrace perched above Cork City overlooking the River Lee. I remember commenting to him how much I was enjoying the soup and that it was a good sign. On this rainy day in May, below us and beyond the Victorian gardens, workmen scurried about pushing wheelbarrows in a wooded area. They were working hard to meet an August 1st deadline as, earlier this year, The Montenotte unveiled their plans for The Woodland Suite Experience. This experience will be the first of its kind in Ireland.
Nine Woodland Suites and River Suites, as well as an exclusive residents only Clubhouse will set a new standard for luxury accommodation in Ireland. Each suite is nestled within the natural beauty of the Irish landscape and elegantly perched on the hilltop, with stunning views overlooking the River Lee and Cork Harbour
With an investment of over €7.5 million, The Montenotte’s Woodland Suite Experience are set to be Ireland’s most luxurious outdoor suites.
Each accommodation style provides a unique cocoon and evocative space, emanating restorative wanderlust, understated luxury, adventure and bespoke authenticity. Adding to these carefully curated and designed suites, the private Clubhouse serves as the exclusive gathering spot for guests of the Woodland Suite Experience to immerse themselves in culinary experiences, unwind with a good book or savour a coffee or crafted cocktail in elegance and complete privacy.
The design of the suites will encourage guests to immerse themselves in nature and take in the surrounding woodlands, just moments away from the vibrancy of the city.
“We have put much thought into crafting this new haven and consideration on how we want to contribute to our local community as we move forward as not just an urban resort, but an urban resort with integrity” explain Frankie and Jo Whelehan, owners of the Montenotte. They have partnered with the Irish charity Hometree to launch a ‘Nights-for-Nature’ tree planting initiative. For every stay at the Woodland Suite Experience, a tree will be planted in honour of the guests, to support the conservation of Ireland’s woodlands, promote land regeneration, and enhance biodiversity.
The restrained material palette includes American oak joinery and natural silver travertine floors, contrasted with seamless bronze mirrored wall finishes. The surrounding walls reflect delicate putty tones with earthy accents and custom rice paper screens are used to diffuse daylight into a soft glow. The Woodland Suite Experience’s design embodies a dreamlike fusion of elevated minimalism personified with a nod to Scandinavian architecture and the interior artistry of Japanese design principles to fuel a modern, simplified yet chic ethos.

For more information or to book, please visit https://www.themontenottehotel.com/the-woodland-suite-experience/


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