Far from being all rustic charm and cosy countryside cottages, Ireland is home to a burgeoning luxury travel scene that includes some seriously high-end hotels. If you’re looking for a luxe city break, you can’t go wrong with a five-star retreat in Dublin. Or for something more regal, there’s a castle in County Limerick with a room for you. Can’t decide? Here are the best luxury hotels in Ireland – all bookable on Culture Trip.
The Europe Hotel & Resort is as sublime as it gets, with a spot by the Lakes of Killarney. The views of the distant mountains and glittery waters evoke a sense of relaxation, especially when enjoyed from the immaculate gardens on a sunny day. The hotel has won many notable awards over the years, thanks in no small part to six decades of attentive hospitality.
Cliff House is a privately owned hotel in the quaint fishing village of Ardmore, with perfect sea views from every room. The House Restaurant has a Michelin star, serving an eight-course menu with a focus on seafood. There’s also a luxury spa, with outside baths for the summer and an indoor pool with views over the waters. If you want something a little more active, book an adventure or two – coasteering or rock climbing should do the trick.
Built on 200ha (500 acres) in County Kilkenny, Mount Juliet Estate is the place to go for a countryside getaway. This five-star property sits in a magnificent Georgian manor house with breathtaking gardens to match. There’s a Michelin-starred restaurant here, too, serving dishes using the highest-quality ingredients from the estate and neighbouring farms, plus a more relaxed dining experience at The Hound restaurant.
You’d be forgiven for thinking this grand hotel is actually a fairytale castle. It’s been decorated in a regal 19th-century style with sparkly chandeliers, oak beds and huge windows. There are activities to match; try your hand at falconry, whiskey tasting or clay-pigeon shooting. There’s also a Tom Fazio-designed championship golf course, best enjoyed before dinner in the Michelin-starred Oak Room restaurant.
The location of the Powerscourt – across a valley from the Great Sugar Loaf mountain – is tough to beat. This 194-room hotel in the Wicklow countryside offers a spectacular signature restaurant, and two championship golf courses. Guest rooms range from a classic deluxe up to the presidential suite, the latter with a balcony terrace with incredible vistas.
See more luxurious options by booking one of the best resorts in Ireland, or find a place to stay for you and a furry friend with our guide to the best pet-friendly places to stay in Ireland, all bookable with Culture Trip.
Sadie Whitelocks has contributed additional reporting to this article.