Sunday 17 December 2017

Valentine's Day Getaways: 19 sneaky short breaks in Ireland

V-Day breaks

The Dean Hotel, Dublin
The Dean Hotel, Dublin
Bespoke 'Pink Diamond' cocktail from the Westbury
Pullman Restaurant
The Rose Hotel
Pól Ó Conghaile

Pól Ó Conghaile

Looking for a sweetheart deal this Valentine’s Day? Our travel editor rounds up the hottest short breaks in Ireland...

Wild Atlantic Romance

Did you know WB Yeats honeymooned at Renvyle House Hotel (095 46100; renvyle.com)? Create some Connemara poetry of your own with a one-night (€99pp) or two-night (€175) getaway on the Wild Atlantic Way.

Packages include a candlelit dinner, cocktails and canapés, live entertainment and of course… roaring turf fires.

Amorous Award-winners

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Cliff House Hotel

Our 2017 Reader Travel Awards celebrated the cream of Ireland’s hotels, so why not pay one a visit for Valentine’s Day?

For starters, you could sample Ireland’s Best Breakfast at Dingle’s Castlewood House (066 915-2788; castlewooddinglecom), where two nights’ B&B and a complimentary mimosa start from a mere €95pp. 

Or what about a starry-eyed seaside stay at the Cliff House Hotel in Ardmore, Co Waterford (above; 024 87800; thecliffhousehotel.com)?

This five-star is Ireland’s Favourite Place to Stay, according to our readers, and pamper-friendly packages include B&B from €205 per room midweek. Spa treatments at the Cliff House start from €65, but the cliff walks don’t cost a cent.

Speaking of spas… V-Day breaks at Monart (053 923-8999; monart.ie) bundle dinner and an overnight stay with a rose petal turndown, a bottle of Prosecco and chocolate truffles. They start from €212pp.

Meanwhile, in Donegal — voted Ireland’s Hidden GemHarvey’s Point (074 972-2208; harveyspoint.com) has weekend breaks with a chocolate fountain, cookery demo, ‘blindfolded’ wine-tasting, dinner and more, from €238pp starting February 10 or 17.

Also in Donegal, Letterkenny’s Dillon’s Hotel (074 912-2977; dillons-hotel.ie) has B&B with a five-course dinner, bubbly and late checkout from €75pp (or €139pp for a weekend).

Melt Hearts in Mayo

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Chef Stephen Lenehan at Belleek Castle

Fancy snuggling under Foxford Woollen Mills blankets? Or chilling out in a waterside hot tub? The Ice House in Ballina (0-96 23500; theicehouse.ie) has you covered. It’s got B&B with chilled bubbles, chocolate treats, and a romantic dinner from €337 per night for two sharing from February 10-17.

Also in Ballina, nearby Belleek Castle (above, 096 22400; belleekcastle.com) has B&B with chocolates, bubbles, and a five-course meal from €165pps, while the Mayfly Hotel in Foxford (094 925-6518; mayflyhotel.com) has B&B with a special Valentine’s Day menu from €60pp.

Sexy City Breaks

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Novel notes and greeting cards are scattered throughout the hotel, with quips such as 'Come here to me' and 'What's the craic?' lightening up any boutique pretentiousness.

Recognise the restaurant from Dublin’s Gibson Hotel (01 681-5000; thegibsonhotel.ie)? It was the location for First Dates Ireland. Unsurprisingly, little Cupid is shooting arrows all over the place ahead of Valentine’s Day.

Weekday deals include B&B with dinner and a pair of ‘love potion’ cocktails from €210, with weekends priced from €250.

Spent January staying in? A date with the Dean Hotel (above; 01 607-8110; deandublin.ie) should set things right — its ‘Feel Love’ package has B&B, a bottle of wine and dinner for two from €149.

Read more: First Look: The Dean Hotel, Dublin

Beds of Roses

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The Rose Hotel

Here’s a hotel ideally named for couples… The Rose in Tralee (066 719-9100; therosehotel.com; above). It has B&B, a five-course ‘His ’n’ Hers’ dinner, a room scattered with rose petals, chocolates, wine and a late checkout from €144 per room. The offer is available between February 13 and 15.

Roses also feature in the Valentine’s package at Castle Leslie (047 88100; castleleslie.com), where B&B at The Lodge is paired with a candlelit dinner for two, a glass of bubbly, chocolates and a red rose in your room from €175pp. February is the hotel’s ‘Month of Love’, don’t ya know…

Finally, Galway’s Glenlo Abbey Hotel (091 519600; glenloabbeyhotel.ie) has B&B with a chocolate afternoon tea and a candlelit meal on its Pullman Restaurant (above), set onboard authentic carriages from The Orient Express. It costs €259pp.

5-Star Frolics

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Bespoke 'Pink Diamond' cocktail from the Westbury

V-Day splash? The Westbury (01 646-3333; doylecollection.com) has a ‘Diamonds are Forever’ package from €310.

It bundles two quintessential Grafton Street experiences, with B&B and a bespoke pink diamond cocktail at the hotel (main), as well as an exclusive appointment with a Boodles boutique expert (available to March 31).

Meanwhile, in Straffan, Co Kildare, the K Club (01 601-7200; kclub.ie) has B&B in a deluxe room with a four-course dinner, chocs and champagne from €190pp.

Northern Lights

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Bushmills Inn, Co. Antrim

Fancy taking a romantic trip north? The stars are aligned for Irish visitors given the sterling/euro exchange, and Hastings Hotels (hastingshotels.com) has V-Day offers including B&B, dinner and a glass of bubbly from just £75/€88pps at six different hotels in Northern Ireland. You can book the deals from February 10-14.

Meanwhile, on the Causeway Coast, The Bushmills Inn (above; +44 (0)28 2073 3000; bushmillsinn.com) has a ‘Romance at the Inn’ package offering B&B, Prosecco, chocolate strawberries and a £50 dinner credit per room from £100/€117pp. My tip? Don’t miss its original, gas-lit bar.

Finally, Upstairs @ Joe’s restaurant in Cushendall (upstairsatjoes.com) has a Valentine’s Day couples’ cookery class on February 14 — you can prepare your own evening meal from £25/€29pp.

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