Ashford Castle voted world's best hotel
Ashford Castle has been voted the world's No.1 hotel by one of the travel industry's leading luxury networks.
The announcement was made last night at the Best of the Best Awards during Virtuoso Travel Week, a luxury travel show in Las Vegas.
“Ashford represents a time stamp of the eras,” said Virtuoso travel advisor Julie Smothers of Montgomery, Alabama.
“Its staff members are like warm and inviting walking history books.”
Millions of euro have been poured into the five-star hotel since it was acquired by the Tollman family for its Red Carnation collection in 2013.
Recent refurbishments include a 32-seat cinema, the replacement of all 820 windows and extensive room works - including those which hosted John Wayne and Maureen O'Hara during the filming of The Quiet Man in 1951.
The 350-acre estate has now returned to its position as one of Ireland's most exclusive hotels, with rooms priced from around €495 per night.
“When the bagpiper greets you at the grounds’ old stone archway, you feel like you’ve entered a fairy tale,” Smothers added.
Ashford Castle was last month voted the world's No.3 hotel by readers of Travel + Leisure, the influential US magazine.
Virtuoso (virtuoso.com) is an invitation-only luxury travel network composed of 9,000 global specialists that it says generate over $14 billion in annual sales.
Travel advisors voted for their favorite luxury hotels from a portfolio of nearly 1,100 properties around the world.
Other prizewinners included The Connaught in London (Best Bar), The Ritz-Carlton in Kyoto (Best Design) and Le Bristol Paris (Best Restaurant).
The awards also feature in the September issue of Virtuoso Life magazine.