Guest Author - Mary Ellen Sweeney
Have you ever wanted to stay in a castle?
Ashford Castle, Cong, County Mayo, is a choice destination for Irish visitors. Its beauty and the fine accommodations make it one of the nicest of Ireland's castle destinations in Ireland. With 83 rooms, dining rooms, several bars, rich furnishings, antiques, and outstanding service, Ashford Castle is one of Ireland's best addresses. To stay at Asford Castle is to risk rubbing elbows with stars of stage and screen.
The dining rooms, The George V and The Connaught Room, offer traditional Irish and French food. The hotel's baronial Prince of Wales Bar, and the Dungeon Bar are filled with atmosphere and ambience.
The history of Ashford is as long as it is distinguished. Built in the 13th century, the castle was built by the de Burgos family after they defeated the O'Connor of Connaught. The main building, a French-style chateau that incorporates the 13th century castle, was built in the mid 1700s by Lord Ardilaun. In 1852, Sir Benjamin Lee Guinness purchased Ashford castle and it soon became the country home of the Guinness family. Guinness turned Ashford into a 26,000-acre parcel of woods and fields, employing almost 300 people. In 1939 Ashford was restored and transformed into Ireland's finest and most exclusive resort hotel.
More information on Ashford Castle here.
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