Rosleague Manor Hotel
Connemara, Ireland in County Galway
The charming family-run property, with its 19th century furnishings and cozy fireplaces, offers a beacon of warmth in mystic, desolate, romantic Connemara.
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We drove from Dublin straight west on a rainy morning at the start of our Irish road trip.
The congested highways leading out of Dublin eventually gave way to empty regional roads and after several hours, we arrived to the Connemara peninsula.
Connemara is a sparsely populated, unplugged, almost wild region of Ireland.
Oscar Wilde once dubbed this place “a savage beauty” and the sheets of rain which poured on and off on our visit, only to expose sunny blue skies and misty sheep-filled mountains, affirmed his words.
The Lakes of Connemara
With hundreds of tiny coves, bays and fishing villages dotting the peninsula, Connemara is one of the most hauntingly beautiful districts in Ireland and remains one of my favorite places from our visit.
Perhaps its remote seclusion is one reason why Irish language, song and literature have maintained a foothold here – locals use Irish on a daily basis and Connemara is one of the largest Gaeltacht, or Irish-speaking, regions in the country.
It seems the French are in on the secret – you'll find many French tourists in Connemara, drawn to the area for over 30 years after French singer Michel Sardou penned an evocative ballad called “Les Lacs du Connemara” (give it a listen here; there's also a music video version shot with French and Irish children here)
Many of the staff at Rosleague spoke French or were from France!
Irish Manor House
After a rainy drive, we pulled up to the quaint pink and ivy house.
Rosleague Manor Hotel overlooks Ballinakill Bay on 30-acres of private woodland. The property was once a traditional Irish country house and has been converted to a hotel, but still retains its 19th Century charm and character.
Each room at Rosleague Manor House is unique in its layout and design.
All the rooms have been carefully updated while retaining their original antique furnishings.
Our first floor room was huge, with a giant king bed, a front sitting area and a huge bathroom that had both a shower and soaking tub.
Exhausted from the long drive, we sat down for a nap and didn't wake until dinner.
Dinner at Rosleague Manor
Refreshed but ravenous, we made our way to the dining room for a relaxed, fine dining experience at Rosleague.
A friendly French waiter who was studying hospitality and getting ‘real world' experience at Rosleague, cheerfully attended to us throughout our stay.
I loved the dining room itself – with its floor to ceiling windows, warm wood touches and historical paintings.
The menu at Rosleague changes daily, as ingredients and produce are sourced locally as well as home grown.
For example, the Manor House keeps pigs in its wooded forest which it serves on the menu and maintains an herb garden. It also has re-established an orchard to provide bumper crops of apples and pears, which Rosleague uses in its in desserts, chutneys and relishes.
Each evening, guests can choose either a 2 course or 5 course menu where the focus is on fresh seafood and mountain lamb.
The menu varies according to what's in season, but below is our menu from the first night of our stay to give you an idea of what Rosleague offers:
Cleggan Bay Crab Claws sauteed with garlic & parsley butter
Lemon Sorbet with a dash of champagne (this was so good!)
Duo of Irish duck (roasted breast and confit leg) with orchard apple compote & blackberry sauce
Lemon & Pistachio roulade
Tea with petit fours
P.S. There is a lovely fern walk through the woods which leads to the pigs.
Ask Tyson, the local canine resident, to lead you to them! He's the smartest dog I've ever met and has an uncanny nack for understanding you.
Say, “Hi Tyson, where are the pigs?” and follow him through the woods :)Read more: A List of the Best Irish Restaurants We Ate at!
We stopped by each but heavy rain on the second day of our visit had us drenched, so we decided to end our sightseeing and head back to the cozy warmth of the hotel.
Luckily for us, Rosleague offers guests afternoon tea with delicious warm biscuits.
Trust me when I say there's nothing better than jam and clotted cream drenched biscuits with hot tea in front of the fireplace!Read more: 10 Photos to Inspire You to Visit Kylemore Abbey
Rosleague Manor House is a member of Ireland's Blue Book.
Letterfrack, Co. Galway, Ireland
Check availability and rates here
Read reviews on TripAdvisor
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