Whether you’re searching for a relaxing retreat or a unique hideaway, these hotels and guest houses will offer the respite you need after the busy festive period …
1 One of Northern Ireland’s most historic hotels, THE OLD INN, Crawfordsburn dates back to 1614, and is full of character with cosy nooks and a great restaurant. Author CS Lewis was a regular visitor. A must-visit is its new Treetop Spa, part of a €2.8m revamp of this property by the Galgorm Collection. As spa devotees will know that means its wellness facilities will be top notch; www.theoldinn.com.
2 The latest addition to THE HARRISON CHAMBERS OF DISTINCTION, Belfast, is a room named after poet John Hewitt, a former resident from 1934 to 1936. As a contemporary of Seamus Heaney, Derek Mahon and Michael Longley, Hewitt was also an art historian and collector and the room reflects his interests. It features a bronze bust of the poet by local artist Anto Brennan in addition to several anthologies. Stays cost from £150; www.thechambersofdistinction.com.
3 Try the two-night Beat the Winter Blues package at FAITHLEGG (available until March) which includes breakfast, dinner each evening, discounts on spa treatments, and a complimentary golf clinic. It’s a chance to explore Waterford: the hotel provides a courtesy coach to the city where guests can explore the Viking triangle and the Lafcadio Hearn Japanese gardens. From €395; www.faithlegg.com.
4 THE BUTLER ARMS HOTEL in Waterville, Co Kerry has joined the Press Up Group and has some great deals for exploring the Ring of Kerry off season. Its current three nights pay for two offer is available until March. Guests can relax in the spacious rooms and enjoy a Winter Warmer cocktail in the cosy bar; www.butlerarms.com.
5 Check in to KNOCKRANNY HOUSE HOTEL & SPA, Co Mayo on January 20-21 for its Warmth & Wellness experience, which combines dinner at La Fougère Restaurant and a two-hour Spa Salveo Experience (with spirulina wrap and a serail mud chamber treatment for two). Expert talks will include kitchen hacks (from head chef Seamus Commons), how small changes can impact wellbeing, and how essential oils can aid mental and physical health. From €350 per person; www.knockrannyhousehotel.ie.
6 Formerly the sporting playground of the Marquis of Sligo, DELPHI LODGE, Connemara, is a magnet for fly fishermen as it is particularly noted for its excellent runs of Atlantic salmon and sea trout. A bonus is staying in the beautiful Georgian country house with its lakeside setting, fine cuisine, and great atmosphere with log fires burning in its three reception rooms. The Lodge can be booked exclusively for private events in January (there are also six lovely cottages on the estate) and can accommodate up to 20 guests. From €195 per person, which includes breakfast and dinner each night; a minimum two-night stay applies; www.delphilodge.ie.
7 The luxurious 24-Hour Hibernation offer at THE SHELBOURNE includes valet parking, a three-course dinner in The Saddle room, a Renewal Resolution treatment each in the spa, breakfast and a late check out. The package is available until February 28, from €849 per night; www.theshelbourne.com.
8 Reset and relax on two yoga retreats guided by Tara O’Rourke at LOUGH ESKE CASTLE, Co Donegal, taking place on January 20-23 and February 24-25. The retreats include two viny?sa flow sessions, two restorative yoga sessions, and an optional guided nature walk on the 43 acres of woodland at Lough Eske Castle. Accommodation, breakfast and dinner in the fabulous 2 AA Rosette Cedars restaurant at the hotel is included, as is access to its excellent leisure facilities. From €315 per person sharing; www.lougheskecastle.com.