The otherworldly magic of Ashford Castle in Co Mayo has seemingly spellbound its guests as the five-star resort continues its fairytale award-winning streak.
The latest accolade for the castle is a number one spot on The Huffington Post’s ‘Best Hotels in the World for Fall 2015’ list compiled by renowned travel writer Richard Bangs.
In his article Mr Bangs praises the hotel’s refurbished rooms, the option to participate in activities such as clay pigeon shooting, zip-lining and golfing and the hotel’s 32-seater cinema boasting complimentary candy and popcorn that he claims makes him want to stay there forever.
CEO of Tourism Ireland Niall Gibbons, whose New York office invited Mr Bangs to visit Ashford Castle earlier this year, commended the hotel.
“Congratulations to all at Ashford Castle on yet another truly well-deserved accolade. Publicity is a very powerful tool in promoting Ireland — in the United States and elsewhere around the world.
“The Huffington Post website has about 65m readers, so this type of positive exposure and recognition is invaluable — it is publicity that money simply cannot buy.”
A bedroom at Ashord Castle
This latest award joins a long list to have been gathered by Ashford Castle since it was acquired by the Tollman family’s Red Carnation Collection in 2013. Following a $75m (€66.3m) investment and refurbishment the Castle was voted world’s number one hotel at the Virtuoso Awards in Las Vegas as well as third best on earth by US holiday guide Travel and Leisure recently.
Ashford Castle was not the only castle to be recognised with The Lodge at Castle Leslie Estate winning the AA Courtesy & Care Award for the first time.
General manager of the four-star property Brian Baldwin said it was all down to the service. “Our service promise at Castle Leslie Estate is to provide a unique and memorable experience for all our guests, demonstrating the highest standards in customer care. Each and every member of the team thrives on the recognition received from guests and industry peers, and to be awarded the prestigious title of AA Courtesy & Care demonstrates that they are best in class.”
The Italian Garden at Powerscourt Hotel
Co Wicklow’s Powerscourt Hotel Resort & Spa has also been named as the AA’s Hotel of the Year for 2015/16. Formerly known as the Ritz-Carlton, the hotel changed ownership in 2013 with the AA praising the hotel’s “transformative journey” at the annual awards ceremony in Dublin.
The awards were not just confined to hotels and The Red Door Country House in Fahan, Co Donegal was recognised as the AA’s ‘Guest Accommodation of the Year’, an award bestowed to the best AA-accredited bed and breakfasts, guesthouses, and farmhouses in Ireland.
Run by husband and wife Adelle and Shay McCallion, The Red Door is no stranger to awards and also holds an AA Rosette for culinary excellence, awarded as a result of a carefully selected menu, locally sourced ingredients and exceptional cooking. The Guesthouse is also renowned for its evening dining and alfresco lunch offerings.
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