A family-owned country manor with a prestigious cookery school, Ballymaloe House offers elegant and attractive guest rooms amid an expansive farm estate situated 40 minutes east of Cork. Dining is a highlight, with local sourced ingredients forming exquisite tasting menus.
Upon entering the grounds of the luxurious Castlemartyr Resort, you’ll be greeted by the ruins of an 800 year old castle built by the Knights Templar. In addition to this unique feature, the extensive 220 acre grounds include manicured gardens, an 18-hole golf course, and several walking/running trails.
The equally impressive manor house dates to the 18th century and is the focal point of the resort. This manor house once served as a private boarding school for boys and now consists of 103 elegant guest rooms and suites. The design of the manor house pays tribute to its historic past and traditional furnishings such as ornate rugs, heavy drapery, and patterned fabrics can be found throughout the lobby.
This classical decor carries through to the Bell Tower Restaurant and Knight’s Bar, while more modern decor can be found in the casual Franchini's restaurant and the state-of-the-art spa and fitness suite. Other modern touches include the eclectic, wooden animal sculptures dotted throughout the wide hallways leading to the spacious guest rooms, which offer a warm ambience.
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All guest rooms overlook the gardens or golf course and are decorated in muted creams with touches of green. Each room is extremely spacious and is equipped with a sitting area, walk-in closet, and an airy bathroom outfitted with marble units as well as a separate bathtub and rainforest shower. Other in-room amenities include a flatscreen TV, air conditioning, free Wi-Fi, and complimentary mineral water. Most rooms feature modern decor, except for the 11 manor state rooms located in the original manor house. These rooms are all individually styled with silk lined walls and other nods to the building’s history.
The Castlemartyr Resort is nestled within a large expanse of greenery in east Cork, approximately 45 minutes outside of the city of Cork. The lush grounds are dotted with manicured gardens and meandering streams as well as a plethora of walking/running trails around the ground’s tranquil lake.
Food and drink
The hotel offers three distinct dining options. The elegant Bell Tower Restaurant, located in the original Manor House, offers a gourmet breakfast and is open daily for afternoon tea and dinner. More casual meals are available in the popular Franchini's, which offers a wide range of pasta dishes and pizzas. Light meals and drinks are also available in the Knight’s Bar.
Family-friendly activities include separate splash times in the indoor pool as well as kid’s club during most school breaks. The hotel also offers child-friendly meals and a seasonal children’s afternoon tea.
Facilities and activities
Castlemartyr offers numerous onsite facilities and activities, ranging from archery, clay pigeon shooting and croquet, to a top-quality health club. The expansive and contemporary spa contains ten treatment rooms, a beauty room and an indoor swimming pool. Other amenities include carriage rides through the grounds, an 18-hole links-style golf course and a relaxation room equipped with board games.
While this large resort seems very modern, we love the small touches referring to the land’s historic past, as well as the property’s ability to cater to a wide range of ages and interests.
Places & hotels on the map
Alternative places to stay nearby
Where possible, we like to offer a range of accommodation for each stop of your trip, chosen by our specialists as some of their favorite places to stay. To help you make the right choice, we give each property a rating based on its facilities and service, but we also look for hotels with distinct character or a location that can’t be bettered.
This boutique hotel on Ireland’s south coast offers a high level of service and sophistication along with a warm and friendly atmosphere. Highlights include the Michelin-starred House Restaurant, an indoor pool and sweeping views of the sea from all rooms.
Hayfield Manor exquisitely blends old world charm with contemporary conveniences. Tucked away in its own grounds, this sophisticated hotel is only a short walk from the heart of Cork and offers exceptional service and award-winning cuisine.
The welcoming Imperial Hotel offers modern guest rooms with touches of historic charm, fine dining and a luxurious spa in the heart of Cork. Its history is evident throughout, from the grand staircase to the photo wall of past guests.
Perfectly situated close to the heart of Cork, The River Lee hotel elegantly blends bright, cheery communal spaces with simple, contemporary guest rooms. Facilities include a lively outdoor terrace bar that overlooks the water and a huge state-of-the-art fitness studio.
Experiences while staying here
The following activities are designed to give you the most authentic experiences of the area where you’re staying. We work with local guides, who use their knowledge and often a resident’s eye to show you the main sights and more out-of-the-way attractions. Our specialists can also suggest outdoor pursuits and activities, such as cooking classes, that will introduce you to the traditions of the area’s inhabitants.
In use for over 150 years and full of character, the Old Jameson Distillery is an ideal place to learn about the history of whiskey distilling in Ireland. This engaging tour gives you a behind-the-scenes look at the whole process.
Explore Cork's history on a walking tour of the city, learning about its links with ancient saints and fleeing French Protestants. You'll also learn how it came to be an international maritime hub and the impact all these influences had on the city.