When traveling in Ireland, you must decide: How many days in a row can you eat a full Irish breakfast without popping? This traditional, delicious feast consists of the following: Sausage, bacon “rashers, ” black and white pudding (pork, oats, and pork blood for black), fried tomato, potatoes, and eggs, all cooked in butter and graced with a heap of Irish soda bread, tea, and orange juice. Wow!
As a proud glutton, I ate a full Irish breakfast six out of the eight days of our Ireland road trip. (Subsequent research suggests that only actual farmers eat a full Irish breakfast every day, and regular Irish folk indulge only once a week, but oh well.) One of the best Irish breakfasts I devoured was at a four-star hotel called The Lodge at Ashford Castle, in Cong, County Mayo. This hotel, built in 1865 but maintained meticulously, also boasts a visual symphony of color and design that left me cooing.
Take, for example, our hotel room. As you can see below, it shone with jewel-toned, ornate decorations unlike any I have ever seen. Just look at that cow-pattered lounging divan!
Meanwhile, the rest of the hotel bursts with color combinations that are different at each turn of the corner. I’m a huge fan of this salmon-and-gold medley here. And where did they get those amazing chairs?
Now, it is important to note that The Lodge at Ashford Castle is not INSIDE the famous castle, but it shares the lush green grounds and lake. Alas, when we visited, the castle itself was under construction and was literally covered from head to toe with sheeting (hence no photos), but word is that it’s finished now, and guests can once again sleep inside a castle from the year 1228! We may not have gotten to stay inside Ashford Castle, but don’t underestimate the luxury of The Lodge.
A special commendation goes to the very helpful front desk staff at The Lodge at Ashford Castle, as they were able to arrange a vetted, quality babysitter for the evening so that for the first time in a week, Colin and I could have our first adult dinner. You know — the kind of dinner where you don’t get scallops thrown in your hair, but rather can leisurely admire how they are arranged on a seashell.
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