Ashford Castle: Sensational Thirteenth-Century Redux
Once upon a time, in a reality of fairy tales and fantasia, medieval nobility and majesty prevailed throughout the emerald green island known as Ireland. During the High Middle Ages, the Norman invasions gave way to settlements such as Ashford on the island’s far west, peppering the landscape with towering castles that epitomized power and period-appropriate ostentation.
Nearly eight centuries after its naissance in 1228, Ashford Castle triumphs as a functioning hotel and historical link to Ireland’s tumultuous past, a splendid adaptive reuse of the fortified residence built by the Anglo-Norman de Burgo family following their defeat of the native O’Connors of Connaught. A top-notch hotel in every facet of design and service, Ashford Castle keeps history in style deep in the remote stretches of western Ireland. The superbly manicured sprawling grounds, regal interiors and touches of modern luxury bow down only to the original dramatic exterior, a perfectly preserved architectural and cultural treasure.
Ashford Castle embodies the medieval mystery and magnificence that has inspired literary and philosophical greats, recalling an exalted yet eerie age of societal evolution. A protective moat, raised watchtowers, creaky stairways and secret passageways are just the beginning. Dimly lit libraries, quiet drawing rooms, draped canopy beds and plush Victorian interiors exude traditional luxury while extensive, labyrinthine pathways cut through dozens of verdant acres, leading to on-site centers for falconry, archery, fishing, spa relaxation, golf and equestrian endeavors. The seasoned and eccentric staff takes tremendous pride in facilitating an all-encompassing sojourn far back in time while dutifully attending to the whims and wants of today’s discerning and pampered traveler. ashford.ie