Irish hotel named best in the world by Conde Nast Traveler
Readers' Choice Awards
Three Irish hotels have been named among the world's Top 10 in Conde Nast Traveler's Readers' Choice Awards 2016.
Ballyfin Demesne, in Co. Laois, is the world's No.1 hotel according to over 300,000 readers of the influential US travel magazine.
Ballyfin beat off world-class hotels like COMO The Treasury in Perth, Umaid Bhawan Palace (Taj) in India and Virgin Islands Hotels Chicago to claim top spot.
Waterford Castle took seventh place, with The Lodge at Ashford Castle placing ninth in an extraordinary showing for Irish luxury hotels.
"If you’ve ever dreamed of summering at a country house, you couldn’t do much better than this stately, 20-room Georgian home," Conde Nast says of Ballyfin.
"Beyond the regal four-poster canopy beds, gilded mirrors, and richly textured wallpapers, there are 614 acres of secluded private gardens begging to be strolled."
"But the real highlight? Having a butler row you out on the lake before enjoying a sumptuous lunch at the picnic house."
Ballyfin scored a 99.11 rating from readers, with Waterford Castle achieving 98.6 and the Lodge at Ashford Castle scoring 98.38.
B&B rates at the 5-star Ballyfin start from €560 per room, midweek, with full-board rates rising to €1,700 per night in its top suites.
Kim Kardashian and Kanye West are believed to have spent part of their Irish honeymoon at the 18th-century house in 2014. A former boarding school, US owner Fred Krehbiel has spent millions on its restoration in recent years.
Readers voted on 7,394 hotels during Conde Nast's survey this year, the magazine says, submitting millions of ratings - a record for the Awards.
"We are so proud, thrilled and excited," Ballyfin said on its Facebook page.
The full awards are published in the November issue of Conde Nast Traveler, with an online list available on cntraveler.com/rca.