Luxury Bed and Breakfast at Beautiful Barrow River valley in County Carlow
A charming beautiful(1863) Country house bed and breakfast sit's beneath Mount Leinster in the peaceful valley of the River Barrow the region is renowned for its beautiful scenery, numerous activities and rich heritage.
It's warm, yellowish, locally cut granite gives it a distinctive and pleasing appearance. The owner, Bobbie Smith, is an enthusiastic hostess, famous for her warm welcome and splendid home baking.
She grew up in the house, knows the area intimately and is always a fund of local knowledge. Bobbie also uses the house as a base for relaxed, bespoke cycling tours in the neighbouring counties of Carlow, Wexford and Kilkenny. Visitors cycle from house to house and their luggage awaits them on arrival.
This Guesthouse was built from crisp, mellow, locally-cut County Carlow granite which gives the house a feeling of tremendous warmth. The house sit's peacefully on the slopes above the River Barrow at Kilgreaney, about half way between Bagenalstown and Borris. Behind the house are Mount Leinster and the Blackstairs Mountains while in front, across the river, are the plains of Kilkenny. Beyond the plains Slievenamon, the Mountain of the Women, in far away Tipperary is clearly visible on fine days.
In the second half of the 20th century, the Church of Ireland passed through a period of rationalisation. Parishes were amalgamated; churches closed and a number of rectories became redundant and were sold. Among these was this Guest house which Mr Young purchased as a home for his family. Fast forward for another thirty-five years and his daughter Bobbie, on inheriting the house, was forced to make it pay and, together with her late husband Don, decided to provide country house accommodation for visitors to the region.
They quickly built up an enviable reputation as a well-run, comfortable house offering good food and good company. Bobbie, who is a member of Euro-Toques, is renowned as a consummate and considerate hostess, and for her imaginative home cooking, using home-grown or local organic produce wherever possible.
County Carlow is one of Ireland’s smallest counties, and Guest House is well positioned for those also who wish to explore the neighbouring counties of Kilkenny, Kildare, Wexford and Wicklow, where there is plenty to see and do.
For those who want to explore there is a portal dolmen at Brown’s Hill and important monastic sites at Ullard and St. Mullins. In the middle of the town of Graiguenamanagh is the great Cistercian abbey of Duiske, the largest in Ireland, with the smaller but more beautiful Jerpoint just south of Thomastown. The mediaeval town of Kilkenny with its castle and museums is worth a visit and nearby gardens include Altamont, Kilfane and Woodstock. There are golf courses at Mount Juliet, Mount Wolsley and Borris, fly fishing for trout and the occasional salmon, and wonderful restful walks along the towpath of the Barrow Canal or, for the more energetic, in the Blackstairs Mountains.
This Guest House in Bagnelstown, is also home to Celtic Cycling, which runs bespoke cycling tours for couples and small groups throughout the South East, along the Rivers Barrow and Nore, through the unspoilt countryside with pretty villages and small hamlets. And, for those who prefer to do nothing, the garden and croquet lawn at Guesthouse are delightfully peaceful and relaxing.
per night, from € 160
- 40% in advance for reservation
- Dinner (please book by noon): €45
- Open: 1st February to 30th November
We stayed in September for a special birthday celebration for a quiet getaway. The host Bobbie was lovely and we enjoyed welcome tea & cake on arrival by a lovely log burning fire. The evening meal was superb and served in the most beautiful dining room again with a lovely fire with just the two of us by candlelight. The home made bread at breakfast time was just perfect too. Bobbies collection of roses are just lovely and on the way home we purchased two pink rose bushes. We will return again for a special treat.
From the welcoming cup of tea to the drinks by the open fire, to the excellent five course dinner in an appropriately gracious setting, to a comfortable room where everything worked, to a huge range of fruit, bread and cooked breakfast, the experience was uninterrupted self indulgence. We will be back .
Spoken languages : English
Bagenalstown Co. Carlow,