Ashford Castle is an imposing castle in Ireland on Lough Corrib. It sits on a massive estate of 350 acres and is the center of an upscale hotel, garden, and recreation complex (including the Lodge at Ashford Castle). From the sweeping manicured lawns to the suits of armor greeting guests in the foyer and the turreted towers, Ashford Castle is a genuine castle transformed into a hotel with modern features. In Ireland, it’s not uncommon for some hotels to label themselves as castles without being truly deserving of the word. Ashford Castle is not one of these pretenders, Ashford is the genuine thing.
As any true castle hotel, Ashford Castle has a rich history. This nearly 800-year-old castle was once owned by the Guinness family. The Anglo-Norman de Burgo family first built a castle here in 1228, and then lost it after being defeated by the O’Connors of Connaught in the 16th century. The castle changed hands many more times with many owners adding to the elaborate interior and extensive gardens until most recently, it was converted into a 5-Star Luxury Hotel. For visitors, it’s a chance to spend a night like nobility in a true medieval castle. Ashford is one of Ireland’s most popular destination wedding venues.
Despite the massive size of the hotel and estate, there are only 82 rooms. Many of the rooms and suites have been individually designed, combining the castle’s original features with modern luxuries. Meticulous attention to detail can be found in the unique works of art with over 800 paintings throughout. Every room and public space has been adorned with original period artworks, keeping with the castle’s grandeur.
If you can’t book a night at the castle, don’t worry, there is also the sister property., the Lodge at Ashford Castle which is located on the grounds with full access to all amenities. While set apart, is feels like a more intimate setting with its own dining and other facilities.
Ashford Castle is a member of the Red Carnation Hotel Collection,