We were booked in for a seminar, so expected a bit of a kerfuffle when everyone arrived together. However that's not what happened, we were among the earlier arrivals, so no problem then.Got talking to the owner who gave us a bit of the history of the place, over a welcome cuppa and biscuits. I have worked in old Anglo-Irish houses when I maintained telephones, and it was such a pleasure to see one in such condition. Then we were taken to our room, No.5, four poster bed and a mattress so high I felt like a young child, my legs dangled when I sat on the bed. There were two radiators so the room was warm as toast, although it was freezing outside. We went down to the bar/lounge area as the rest of the gang arrived. We had a couple of drinks, then the food came out. This wasn't expected, but the hotel decided we were in need. So lots of cocktail sausages, chicken, battered fish pieces, with a choice of three sauces, as well as sandwiches. Went to bed well sated.
Next morning breakfast was served, it's a long time since I saw egg yolks that yellow, and that tasty, the rest of it was lovely too. Lunch later was simple, yet very tasty. I was not encouraged to lick my plate, my wife can be so mean! Evening dinner was huge, tasty, and went on for four courses, my apple and berry pie being my favourite (simple tastes). Next day was as good, so I reckoned weight was gained.
Now the technicalities, there is a limited WiFi service, it works in reception area, and, strangely in our bedroom. If you are in need there is an Eircom WiFi hotspot that works right through the hotel, so free to Eircom customers, one €uro per day to the rest of us, easy to access. Also don't expect TV in the rooms, this place is for the atmosphere, not watching Eastenders or Dr. Phil.
Final point, when you walk the old stairway you will feel a chill, not a threatening one, just a coolness that says I'm here acknowledge me. To me it felt like a female presence, but as it's something new to me, I may be totally wrong. It didn't feel scary at all, just something I never felt before, take note.
- Also Known As:
- Ballykealey Country Hotel
- Ballykealey Manor Hotel Ballon, Ireland - County Carlow