We’ve rounded up three of the most STYLISH HOTELS for a memorable AUTUMN BREAK …
TO THE MANNER BORN: Mount Juliet
In a nutshell: Names of rooms and suites (Mr Jinks, the Black Earl, Lady Helen …) give a clue to the history of this 18th-century gem, just outside Kilkenny.
Do: Participate in some archery, be dazzled by falconry or take to the saddle and enjoy horse riding in the state-of-the-art equestrian centre.
Eat: Lunch in the new restaurant at Hunters Yard, while Afternoon Tea is to be savoured in the stunning Manor House. Dine in style in Lady Helen, the estate’s Michelin-starred restaurant.
Drink: Enjoy morning coffee in The Major’s Bar – also the perfect spot for an after dinner night-cap.
Rooms: Mount Juliet has finessed the art of combining luxury with comfort. Rooms are pretty and luminous. Thomastown, Co Kilkenny; www.mountjuliet.ie.
THE ROMANTIC GETAWAY: Glenapp Castle
In a nutshell: A mere 20 minutes from Stranraer is the 19th-century privately-owned mansion that is Glenapp Castle. With views over the Irish sea and the Isle of Arran, this is a posh, old-school getaway with unobtrusive service. The owners want to emphasise the home-from-home experience.
Do: Get outside and enjoy the horticulture from the restored walled garden, azalea pond and Constance Spry-designed parterre. A horse and carriage can take you on a gentle tour of the grounds, while falconry and fishing are also on offer, with an all-year tennis court to channel your inner Anna Wintour. There are plenty of wellies and raincoats for layering up, and a daily constitutional is ideal for walking off breakfast or making space for dinner.
Eat: The hotel’s Michelin-starred AA Rosette is well-deserved with beautifully presented dishes on starched linens from breakfast to dinner. Afternoon Tea or drinks in front of a roaring fire in the library or drawing room is also a highlight.
Rooms: Just the right balance of plaid and plush, the rooms are filled with art and antique accents. Ballantrae, Ayrshire, KA26 0NZ, Scotland. www.glenappcastle.com.
THE MODISH ONE: The Ned
In a nutshell: It’s a blockbuster with eleven floors, 252 bedrooms (of twelve different categories), two pools, a rooftop terrace and a beauty basement which will leave spa mavens swooning.
Do: Start the day with a dip in the pool and proceed to hair and make-up, literally. A small Trish McEvoy boutique offers 15-minute touch ups (gratis), while after hours The Vault Bar is the probably the safest bar in the world. Pun aside, it features a 20 tonne circular door and 3,600 brushed steel safety deposit boxes, reminding us the building, designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens, was the former HQ for HSBC.
Eat: With nine restaurants to choose from it’s a tricky decision and is akin to dining in an upmarket foodhall.
Rooms: Reference the Golden Age and Roaring Twenties and are based on cruise ship quarters. Sleigh beds, cocktail shakers, the full range of Cowshed amenities and a bespoke Net-A-Porter menu for Ned guests to call upon are all memorable details. 27 Poultry, London, EX2R 8AJ. www.thened.com.
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