Our second hotel during our Ireland trip was the very famous Adare manor. A Five star luxury hotel, it is known for its beautiful golf and has been famous all over Ireland for many years so we were quite excited to experience it.
After our stay at Cashel Palace we continued our tour of Ireland by going to see the Cliffs of Moher on the East coast which were indeed impressive. We were not very lucky with the weather or maybe it was the typical Irish weather because it was raining all day long. It meant that we couldn’t see the coast nor the expanses of the ocean when we were looking at the cliffs. It was still very beautiful and a good way to discover the coast of Ireland.
Adare Manor sits in an 840 acres estate in the Adare village.
Location and arrival : 4/5
After this wet day, we were very happy to enter the long drive in Adare Manor estate and discover this very impressive building.
Adare Manor is in the village of Adare, just near Limerick to the West of Ireland. It used to be the family house of the 2nd Earl of Dunraven. The hotel sits in its own very vast estate of 840 acres with beautiful landscaped gardens, a walled garden and of course a fantastic golf.
You can easily walk from the hotel to the lovely village of Adare with its thatched roof houses and cute shops. Make sure to take your room key with you as it opens the gate leading you to the village.
A former family house turned Ireland’s best five stars hotel
The building is a very imposing grey mansion with an addition of a modern aisle which is also built in Grey stones.
An example of a rare ‘Calendar House’, Adare Manor is adorned with 365 leaded windows, 52 ornate chimneys, 7 stone pillars and 4 towers to mark the annual tally of days, weeks, and seasons in a year.
It could appear a bit severe but the greenery of the gardens around and the wonderful pink daisies provide a lovely contrast and bring romanticism.
Upon entrance, you are immediately in the vast foyer, with a ceiling height of ten meters, a huge fireplace, sofas warmed with plush cushions, and, as it was easter, a display of fresh flowers, grass and a massive chocolate egg.
From there, you can access the drawing room, the bar, the gallery where they serve the Adare Manor afternoon tea and breakfast, and the gastronomic restaurant called the Oak room. A few steps take you downstairs to the Tack room, which is an adults-only cocktail bar and the spa which has its own little heated indoor pool.
Classic elegance at Adare Manor
There are 102 rooms in the hotel, which for me is usually too big. However Adare Manor has mastered the art of creating a sense of intimacy despite its majestic size.
The furniture layout intelligently creates pockets of privacy, the fabrics, classic and heavy, add warmth to the very long rooms with high ceilings and the lighting is designed to project the right mood at different times of the day.
Our rooms were of the same category and next to each other. they were both overlooking the river and the greenery of the park which was a lovely sight in the morning. They were quite big with a space to move around, two bathroom sinks a shower and a bath and dressing room area for all your clothes. It definitely is a luxury room for all the amenities and comfort you have whether it’s a mini bar with complimentary soft drinks and water, the very comfy plumpy bed, the softness of the sheets the iron and hairdryer….
The decor though is a bit too impersonal for my taste. There is no individual style and Mademoiselle and our room were exactly the same. It is very classic and quite elegant but not my style. It might be that rooms of higher category are more individual but those are quite expensive.
Ultimately it doesn’t matter too much as really this is the place where you are going to be out and about doing lots of activities.
Take advantage of all the activities at Adare Manor
Adare Manor like Gleneagles in Scotland is actually a place where you come to enjoy lots of activities. First of all you’ve got the Padel club which is in a modern building well hidden from the main hotel, cladded in wood. It offers a much more minimalistic decor and a darker atmosphere which immediately puts you in a state of relaxation.
The club has a fabulous indoor 17 m long heated pool which ends with a Jacuzzi overlooking the countryside through big glass windows. There are enough seats all along the pool which are very comfortable. Of course there is a steam room, sauna, hammam and showers.
The Padle club also hosts a padel court, a golf simulation room which comes with its own little bar, a gym and a yoga studio.
Among the activities on offer you have archery, falconry, horse riding (although not on site),dog hunting, clay pigeon shooting etc.
We enjoyed riding the bikes all around the estate. They are freely available just outside the main entrance. A great way to discover the estate. We came upon the falconry house at the time a lady was coming to feed them and were able to ask lots of questions. We learned a lot about those very interesting birds.
Mademoiselle and Mr Big also had a horse riding session at a local horse school. They benefited from the expert advice of a very experimented lady and then went on a ride to a local castle.
We also had a fun session with one of the young gym instructors trying to teach us Padel. This quickly rising in popularity sport is a mix of tennis and squash. I am utterly rubbish at anything sporty but still had a great time!
Of course we had treatments at the spa, which is in the main house and has its own heated pool, sauna and steam room. I had a very nice body massage and the addtional suggested upgrade of a face massage using the excellent products from 111skin.
Stunning food at the Oak Room at Adare Manor
One thing we really enjoyed at Adare Manor is the variety of meal options.
You can have light bites in the drawing room and upstairs bar with some classic sandwiches and salad which looked absolutely fine. The room service had an extensive menu and we really enjoyed it the first evening watching a movie on the big size TV in the room.
You can also have afternoon tea of course in the afternoon in the Gallery. For a more relaxed and family-suited restaurant, the Carriage House, a 5’ walk from the mani house offers good choices.
And if you go to the Tack room, the adults only bar downstairs, again you’ll be able to enjoy several if you bite to eat.
But the masterpiece is of course the gastronomic restaurant called the Oak room.
It is hosted in what used to be the family dining room, an elegant but welcoming room with wood panels and huge windows opening onto the gardens. It faces west so you can admire the sunset as you start your diner.
The experience is really worth it: the food is absolutely delicious, the service is spotless both friendly and professional. We choose the “Surprise” menu which had eight dishes each one an explosion of flavours, very delicate. We probably could’ve done without the meat dish which was absolutely fantastic but coming towards the end we didn’t appreciate it as much as we would have if we just had it as part of a regular menu. The stand-oout dishes for me were the parmesan ravioli with a Parma ham veloute, the asparagus with orange and smoked eels, and the langoustine in a lobster bisque.
I would highly recommend that you make sure to stay at Adare Manor when the Oak room is open which is only Wednesday to Sunday and book dining there.
True five stars luxury service
As soon as you arrive the staff is absolutely wonderful and will come to you with genuine warmth.
The quality of the service is a big contributor to the feeling of being pampered. You never wait for anything, it is served with a smile and they also anticipate your needs.
One morning for example, as we were rushing away from breakfast to make it on time to the horse riding session, a lady noticed that I was trying to pack some croissants in some tissue from my handbag and immediately asked if I wanted a packing box and to take some hot tea and coffee in cups.
They are very attentive and observant. True luxury service.
Adare Manor review – overall verdict
We truly had a very nice relaxing holiday at Adare Manor. While the style of the room was nothing special, everything else was really to our liking: the great service, the flexible options in terms of food, the delicious gastronomic restaurant, the deligthful treatmentss at the spa, the long pool, and all the activities.
Adare Manor really manages to create a sense of intimacy and luxury despite its big size. I would definitely recommend it if you are considering a trip to Ireland.