We were excited to be able to stay in not just a castle hotel, but a premier spa hotel. There are a few spa hotels to choose from in Ireland, but the best one is at Lough Eske Castle Hotel & Spa. Located in northwest Ireland, this spa hotel in Donegal, Ireland, is tucked away in the woodlands near Lough Eske Lake. Lough Eske Spa is a relaxing getaway experience you will never want to end. Lough Eske Spa is only half of the property’s great feature, the hotel itself is one of only two five star hotels in the Donegal county of Ireland. Guests are guaranteed that the service throughout their stay will be nothing, but world class at Lough Eske Castle Hotel & Spa.
Full disclaimer – We received a generous discount to stay at Lough Eske Castle Hotel & Spa. As always, our opinions are non-biased and our own. Our post contains affiliate links. When you click on the link you will have the option to purchase a product at no extra cost to you, but we would receive a small commission. We want to thank Lough Eske for their generosity and for everyone following and supporting us on all of our sweet adventures.
Solis Lough Eske Castle has a long history dating back to 1621. It was originally a mansion when first built and then in 1861 Lough Eske castle was constructed. Throughout the next 150 years the castle would change hands and at times fall into complete disrepair. At one point from 1930 – 1939 the castle became a hotel but one evening a fire broke out and destroyed the billiards room and ballroom.
When the present owners bought the estate the castle was in poor shape. For the most part, all that remained of the castle were the outer walls. Trees had sprung up inside the castle and were threatening to bring down the whole building. After 18 months of work and one of the biggest financial investments Donegal Town has ever seen, the castle has finally become what you see here today. In 2017, Lough Eske Castle Hotel & Spa celebrated 10 wonderful years.
Lounge Like Royalty in the Drawing Rooms
Lough Eske Castle Hotel & Spa have several drawing rooms for guests to enjoy at their leisure. We felt as if we were either transported back in time. Relaxing in the drawing rooms made us feel royal just as the Hollywood movies depicts. Some of the drawing rooms have wooden paneled walls, green or red beautiful chandeliers, letter sofas, gold curtain robes and more – it all felt regal. And if guests want to really feel elegant, they can make an appointment for Afternoon Tea in a drawing room.
Five Star Hospitality
As we briefly mentioned, Lough Eske Castle Hotel & Spa is one of Donegal’s five star hotels in the county, so it goes without saying guests receive five star hospitality. As soon as we entered the lobby we were greeted with a warm welcome. The front desk agent went through all of the details of our stay including our suite, dinner and thermal spa reservations. We barely had to lift up a finger as our luggage was taken care of by our bellman. Then when we arrived to our garden suite, we received a hand written note from the team, chocolate covered strawberries and a box of house made macarons. From the moment we arrived, to the small touches of special details, we received nothing but five star hospitality.
Accommodations Fit For a King and Queen
Lough Eske Castle Hotel & Spa provides 96 guest rooms with 7 different room categories. They range from courtyard rooms, garden suites to a Presidential Suite. Regardless of the room categories, they are all fit for queen and king! It is also purrfect for a furry little four-legged prince or princess. Yes, this castle hotel is pet friendly. We wish we could have brought our little Princess Tiramisu to Lough Eske Castle Hotel & Spa – we know she would have loved it!
We had the pleasure of staying at a Garden Suite and fell in love with everything it offered. The elegant Garden Suites has a grand space of 900-1000sq ft with a lovely surrounding atmosphere. They are located within the castle’s garden and across from the Lough Eske Spa. We loved the location of our Garden Suite. Walking through the garden to and from the castle felt very enchanting. We were also only a few yards away from rejuvenating at the Lough Eske Spa. Though the Garden Suites were created during the restoration of the castle in 2007, the suites still maintain the original castle walls and made us feel like royalty.
Living Area and Bedroom
Our suite made us feel more at home than our own apartment. It has a significant living room area with a Spanish fireplace, full length mirrors, a vanity, a desk and the best part, a beautiful four poster bed. Some of the tiles leading from the bedroom to the bathroom were even heated! The living room had a cozy couch and two arm chairs centered around a fireplace. While Christina got prepared at the vanity, Adam would do a little work at the desk.
The bathroom was just as luxurious with a full sized bath tub, overhead shower, a double granite top sink and a warm towel rack. Nothing beats warm towels after a nice shower! In addition to warm towels, the stone tiled floor was ALWAYS warm! Guests do not have to go to Lough Eske Spa to relax and receive the essence of spa amenities, we received them inside our own suite.
The entire suite has stone tiled floors and we found the floor to be relatively warm near our four-poster bed too. Walking barefoot around our Garden Suite was comforting. Though we did not need slippers, Lough Eske provides guests with complimentary use of bathrobes and slippers. Needless to say, with our robes, slippers, Spanish fireplace, warm stone tiles floors, and towel rack, we found ourselves warm and cozy despite the cold rainy weather outside.
Lough Eske Spa
Lough Eske Spa, also referred to as Spa Solis, has continuously been ranked as one of Ireland’s leading spas. They have been ranked top ten in Telegraph Travel amongst other websites. We understand why as we were blown away by the Thermal Suite inside the spa. The spa is located in the castle’s gardens inside a beautiful Victorian Glass House.
All guests have access to the pool, hot pool, locker rooms and a steam room. For an additional price, guests can have access to the Thermal Suite, which we highly recommend. The Thermal Suite has a huge stone chair that is naturally warm – Christina almost fell asleep relaxing on it. The suite also has a gorgeous thermal pool that uses UV to clean the pool so there are very little chemicals. After only ten minutes swimming in the thermal pool, Christina’s skin felt extremely soft and refreshed. That is not all, the suite has more ways to relax with a sauna, steam room, sanarium and tropical experience showers. Christina left the Thermal Suite as a new person!
In addition to the Thermal Suite, the Lough Eske Spa also has amazing treatments to restore the body and soul. They are known for their special tailor made Anne Semonin and Yon-Ka treatments. Guests will experience world class massages, facials, aromatherapy and more.
Guests have a few options to choose from when it comes to dining. Lough Eske Castle Hotel & Spa has a fine dining restaurant and two bars for casual dining and to engage in sporting events.
Gallery Bar and Lobby Lounge
Guests can enjoy a cocktail, pint of Guinness, casual lunch and dinner in the Gallery Bar and Lobby Lounge. Lough Eske uses nothing but the freshest and local ingredients, so don’t let the relaxed atmosphere fool you – the bistro menu has several five star entrees. From Donegal Bay oysters to 100% Irish beef burger and triple-cooked potato chips, guests can find their casual fare at Gallery Bar and Lobby Lounge.
The Oak Bar
Another great bar located within the castle is Oak Bar. This bar is not used to only enjoy a pint of Guinness or a Whiskey flight, but also for a game of billiards and to listen to traditional Irish music. Guests never have to leave the castles premises to enjoy all of the Irish fare.
Cedars Grill is an outstanding fine dining restaurant providing guests an elegant experience with a casual touch. Guests will not find the traditional Irish fare of just meat, cabbage and potatoes, but instead they will be introduced to an elevated Irish cuisine. You cannot go wrong choosing an entree, but the dishes we recommend to try are the Beetroot, Lamb Journey, 12 Hour Brasied Beef and Chocolate Sphere. Read our full dining experience review here.
Breakfast at Cedars Grill
Guests will be pleased to know that a full Irish breakfast is included in the daily rate. Nothing Lough Eske does is ordinary – breakfast includes a buffet, hot selection with a chefs table and a la carte menu. The buffet offers guests freshly baked pastries, mixed fruits, cold meats, prepared fish and cheeses. For everything hot, guests can go to the chefs table where they will cook up an order of pancakes, omelettes and your choice of prepared eggs. In addition, there is buffet-style of all the components of a typical Irish breakfast – sausage, cheesy tomatoes, mushrooms, potatoes and more. The a la carte menu offers entrees such as eggs benedict, porridge, baked cod, poached eggs with salmon and more. Whether you love meat, are gluten free, vegan or vegetarian, Cedars Grill has something for everyone.
Not only is Lough Eske Castle Hotel & Spa one of the best castle hotels and spas in Ireland, but it is also one of Ireland’s top wedding venues. It is no surprise when you experience the atmosphere and five star hospitality. Lough Eske Castle Hotel & Spa is located between Lough Eske Lake and the Blue Stack Mountains. Also nearby are great areas for activities such as hiking the Glenveagh National Park, surfing at the beaches and playing golf at some beautiful courses. It is truly the premier location for a spa break, luxury stay and wedding venue.
We loved our experience at Lough Eske Castle Hotel & Spa. Our only negative thing to say is that we wished we stayed longer! We highly recommend guests spend at least two nights here because there are so many things to enjoy – drawing rooms, dining options, Lough Eske Spa, outdoor activities and more.
Lough Eske Castle Hotel & Spa
Lough Eske, Donegal Town
Co. Donegal, Ireland
+353 7497 25100
Christina and Adam