A drive along country roads brought us to this estate. As we drove past an old iron gate within large stone arches, we saw in the distance a large mansion. It looked stately. The proprietor greeted us as we entered the hallway of this grand house. It was like entering a museum. The main hall looked like it was 150 feet long, with ceilings that were probably 20 feet high and windows that were probably 10 feet tall.
We entered our room on the second floor. It was huge. Between the fireplace on one side and the wall on the other, the room must have been 30 feet by 20 feet. The bathroom was a corner room, and itself was very large. In short, I was impressed. Our room alone was bigger than most Manhattan apartments. All was clean, well-appointed, laid out with love. The atmosphere in this home is one of the ages. You feel that this place is a testament to history.
In the huge dining room we met others who were staying in this grand house. There is a very long table in the middle of the room, just like in the movies about mansions/castles where people sit around huge, long tables. Except here you get to connect with total strangers at the table, get to exchange your travel stories.
Our time was very well-spent in this house. Each night we lounged in front of the fireplace with a glass in hand. It was like being transported into the Golden Age, the Belle Epoque. Best of all, in this arrangement you are living not in a commercial hotel, but someone's home. Joyce, the proprietor, fills 20 roles, from reception, to farmer, to chef, mother, wife, landscaper and much, much more. She runs this place with love. This is apparent. We spent a lot of time speaking to Joyce, sharing stories and listening to her story of how she ended up as a live-in hotelier in this colossal home. Ask her about it.
Breakfast is served each morning as it should be ---fresh. We all tried Joyce's eggs and bacon, and of course, it was marvelous. Joyce's own chickens produce the eggs, so the eggs are served fresh. The bacon was real meat (Americans will be pleasantly surprised, because what we call bacon is really leftover shavings).
In summation, this grand house is the best of all worlds. It is not a hotel in the classic sense of the word. It is part bed-n-breakfast, part guesthouse. It is a mansion with several hundred years of history. It is much more than just an accommodation. You get to have real conversations with Joyce and with other guests, you get to walk the huge hallways and marvel at 300 years of history within these walls. You are transported into another era while in this house. When you look outside and see endless, lush green fields all around the house, you realize that this might be the most perfect place to stay in all of Ireland. Seriously.
We will come back here.
Joyce and Denis are great hosts and took very good care of us. We had an entire apartment in the West Wing with two bedrooms, a kitchen stocked with food, and a well appointed bath. There was a ball room (where they have yoga classes), a large sitting room, and other rooms of varying sizes and choices. CastleHackett House is the perfect place to relax in the Irish countryside!
Unfortunately we only stayed one night here. Now wish we had more time here. Hosts, Denis and Joyce, were so welcoming. Our room was huge and bathroom was clean and updated. The breakfast Joyce put out for us was delicious. We truly didn't want to leave. This is a very old house with lots of history. Do not expect a TV, frig, or in room coffee maker. You will also have to climb stairs. We did have good wifi and there is at least one TV in sitting room downstairs.