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“Amaaaazing!!”
Review of Ballyportry Castle

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Ballyportry Castle
Scarsdale, New York
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Amaaaazing!!”
Reviewed October 18, 2011

My husband and I got married along the Cliffs of Moher this past summer and we stayed here with half of our wedding guests. We can't stop talking about it!! It was AWESOME... absolutely the coolest. The authenticity is astounding, but beware: this is NOT a Disney World Castle!! It's grandeur is incredible, and while it has been updated and has electricity and running water, it's not for the weak-hearted. For example, I was fine with a freezing cold shower on the morning of my wedding day, it added to the charm, but it's definitely not for everyone. Marianne, Siobhan, the furnishings, the roof, the grounds, the neighbors, the great room, the little town of Corofin where it's located - were all absolutely amazing! Thank you for sharing your home with us!!

Room Tip: The room with the water bed was wonderful (b/c it was heated), BUT don't even bother to try usin...
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  • Stayed July 2011, traveled with family
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Helpful?
5 Thank Vegg1eStar
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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13 reviews from our community

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English first
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
48 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 76 helpful votes
Reviewed July 9, 2011

As you can imagine, renting a castle for a holiday has some cachet to it. But of course, you have to temper your expectations. No way it will love up to your excitement level...right? Well...Ballyportry does. (And more!)

Of course, that might depend on your idea of "castle". If you have a realistic idea of how luxurious" Middle Ages castle living would have actually been...well, don't worry, you'll feel quite lucky. (Yet find the mere experience insightful in some senses. Such as how you can hear just about everything in the rooms above and below you...) If you're a 5-star hotel kind of traveler...this probably isn't for you. The castle is well kitted out, but it is also charmingly rustic. (For us it was just right.)

My only regret is that we only had a week. It just seems not enough time to soak up all the time-spending I could happily do there. You could skip almost everything there is to see in the area and still be happy, just because it's so lovely to hang out with your family in your very own castle. Few things can beat standing atop "your own castle" and admiring the emerald views that stretch out before you. Or the stars at night...

All in all, you'll leave the place feeling like it's "yours" in a certain way...and that consequently goes for Ireland too.

I don't want to give too much away, so I'll stop here. (Feel free to PM me with questions.) But Ballyportry just made for a vacation that will stand out in everyone's memory, and I am positive some of us will certainly be back in future years.

Room Tip: Wooden floors/ceilings = noisier rooms. Ones with stone are much quieter. Note that not all the heav...
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  • Stayed June 2011, traveled with family
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Helpful?
5 Thank ptesinge
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Annapolis, Maryland
Level Contributor
202 reviews
43 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 50 helpful votes
Reviewed June 7, 2011

I planned the trip a year in advance and wanted to stay in a “castle.” After much searching for just the right place, I discovered Ballyportry. The excitement of our arrival to Ballyportry was ear splitting!! There were 8 of us raging from 5 to 77 and we all delighted in the castle. It was just exceptional from start to end. The great room was wonderful to all meet in at the end of the day and talk over our adventures. Climbing up and out to the roof for star gazing was indeed and adventure! You can't help but feel enveloped in a timeless experience while walking the grounds. One of the many memories we will always have (and photos) is a carving near a window on the stairs of a woman this is in a bit of provocative pose and naked. You wouldn't really notice it unless you were a 5 year old girl. Needless to say our little "Princess" dressed her every day with her paper doll clothes!
The location is great for day trips and very convenient to local markets and restaurants. Marianna (the castle host) gave us great information and a lovely tea upon arrival. We took her advice and went to Loop Head Cliffs instead of Cliffs of Mohr. Breathtaking and no one around! Doolin is a must see and very convenient to drive. The Burren is in your backyard and an amazing place to discover. We will never forget our "turf" fires in the stove as you enter in the castle. This was the best way to experience the real Ireland from days gone by and yet enjoy the modern conveniences of today.
We went in early June and only had 1 day of light rain. We had no crowds of tourists and school had not let out for the summer. We really felt like we were alone in Ireland.
Go, and experience the magic of Ballyportry!

  • Stayed June 2011, traveled with family
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Helpful?
2 Thank Gigglebelly
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
dublin
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed June 1, 2010

Ballyportry is a journed back in time to a bygone age. It's situatioon in Clare is glorious. The castle itslef was magical capturing time frozen still. All the information on arrival lived up to expectations built up before arrival. The bederooms were all very comfortable and cosey. Ballyportry Castle is a gem hidden in Co. Clare where I would definetly go back to again. The Castle had every comfort from home and yet had more relaxing sides to it. My stay there was like what it was like in days gone by, living history with so much to do, places to see and go. Even damp weaher would not put you off. All in all,an exciting holiday. I can't recommend Ballyportry Castle enough.

  • Stayed May 2010, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank DublinApplepear
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Ballyportry Castle

Property: Ballyportry Castle
Address: Ballyportry Castle Ballyportry Castle Ballyportry Castle Corofin lane, Corofin, Ireland
Location: Ireland > Province of Munster > County Clare > The Burren > Corofin
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 2 Specialty Lodging in Corofin
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Number of rooms: 6
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
’Medieval Splendour in The Heart of The Burren’, this is a 500 year old Gaelic Tower House in Co. Clare Ballyportry sleeps eight guests comfortably. It has six bedrooms with four double beds. There are two large doubles, including a king-size heated waterbed in the master bedroom on the first floor and two small single bedrooms, with two beds in each.To cross the threshold at Ballyportry is to step back in time 500 years. Protected by an outer wall or bawn, this Gaelic tower house rises 90 feet from turf to battlement. It is an authentic restoration, evoking medieval Ireland at a turbulent time when allegiance was not so much to a sovereign, as to a family, and a man’s home was truly his castle. Renovated without compromising its integrity, Ballyportry offers the convenience of a modern house, within the protective walls of an ancient fortress. Here you can experience the comfort, and solace of an open hearth, and the distinctive smell of a turf fire. See brilliant sunsets and dazzling rainbows from the battlements, or simply savor the quiet serenity of rural Ireland. There are three stone bathrooms, one on the ground floor, a full bath with shower off the master bedroom, and a bath with shower for the second and third bedrooms. Recessed into the window nook of the master bedroom is a deep, hand-carved stone tub (wide enough for two) which once was a horse trough on a local estate. The fridge freezer and dishwasher and a large six burner gas range for cooking are the 21st-century contributions to comfortable rustic living. The under floor heating and the thick limestone walls retain the heat well. The 6 floored Tower House is furnished in an authentic way using fabrics in keeping with the late 15th century. The sheets and pillowcases are of linen, and wool blankets from Co. Tipperary complete the dressing of the beds. All the furnishings reflect the time of late medieval Ireland, a time of hospitality, song, and poetry in Gaelic Tower Houses. To this end the best of craftsmanship is used through out in the ongoing process of furnishing the five hundred year old Gaelic Tower House. From the entrance a stone spiral steps leads up to the other rooms. At the top of the Tower House is the impressive Great Hall with exposed oak roof trusses, an open fireplace, couches and a table for dining. There is a second kitchen with dishwasher, fridge and electric cooker that serves the Great Hall. The narrow stone windows are built to capitalise upon light in ways that have been forgotten. Full moons are to be savored from the battlements, as are August mists over the stream, and bog lakes below. Guests may imbibe the clear air, and stillness, as they gaze from the battlements, particularly on starry nights. Dinner is consumed in an atmosphere of lofty leisure which permeates the elegance of the Great Hall and its open hearth turf fire. The geography of the building takes a bit of getting used to, and one has to be careful on the curving stone stairs, but the feeling of discovering another time, and place more than compensates for any adjustments you have to make in the tower house. Residing within the thick stone walls is a bit like being on a boat – you are cocooned from the outside world. It is actually very comfortable, and great for a relaxed break from the stress of contemporary life. Please note that the wonderful curving late medieval stone staircase may not suit small children or those with walking disabilities. Along with the guest WC on ground floor level there are two bath rooms. While the water supply will cope with several showers at a time, guests may need to stagger the times of ablutions! ... more   less 

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