Historic tower house -wildest place to sta… – homeaway gas 89


This is a wonderful rustic property, which is in a magnificent setting with dramatic views (and sometimes dramatic weather!!), it is warm and dry inside thanks to the underfloor heating and Aga range. It is mainly open plan with two open mezzanines and then a more private bright and little apartment at the top of the building. Renovated by Stefanie Jaax in 2000, she aimed at a combination of the medieval with the contemporary; while the ground and first (half) floor are restored in the authentic style, using original building material, but keeping the rough structures and inner wall textures as well as the 8m high room appearance. On the roof accessible through an inner wall staircase is a newly built apartment with a glass westerly facing front and an enclosed terrace. The old French open fireplace in the kitchen/living area on ground floor with the old style AGA cooking range provide a cosy, atmospheric living space. The kitchen is equipped with dishwasher, Belfast sink, integrated wooden cupboards and fridge, two big worktops and a large antique oak dinner table (3m) with benches in the center.

Three wooden beds are on the loft area below the vaulted ceiling and one double sofa bed is on the first floor landing, all fairly open spaces within this massive 8 m high inner medieval space (children love this). There are comfortable futon mattresses for those who want to sleep in the modern top room on the floor with underfloor heating and enjoy more privacy and enjoy watching the stars. There is a shower and toilet in a separate bathroom next to the top room and one toilet on the first floor. And there is another shower in the shed which is perfect for warming up and getting rid of the salt and grit after a day’s sailing and boating on the water.

The roof terrace is sheltered with laminated glass panels and is ideal for private and undisturbed sunbathing (weather and wind permitted). Baltimore and Heir Island can be easily accessed either by rib or ferry, boat hire is also available in Baltimore. There is a harbour pier in walking distance and access to beaches and the sea. There is internet access available all year around. The castle is on cliffs, surrounded by green fields, one of this containing an art installation ‘die Traumstätte’. (the place of dreaming) View more

This vacation is not for everyone – people that have trouble getting around on their own, small children, and people that like to be close to attractions might want to skip this place. People that are reasonably fit, are adventurous, enjoy scenery and peace, and want an authentic experience – this is THE place. There are two wood-burning fireplaces (extra firewood can be carted in via a wheelbarrow from the out building, which is also where you’ll find the clothes washer). The hot water tank is only big enough to support short showers (~10 min or less), so wash quickly. The kitchen floor is heated (as is the floor in the top bedroom), which was an awesome surprise after walking down two stories on unheated stairs.

The caretaker was fabulous – when we had trouble with our rental car, she was able to direct the rental company (with our replacement car) to the castle in the middle of the night (apparently providing GPS coordinates is insufficient for Sixt). She even gave us a lift into town for provisions while we were stranded.

The wind often howls around the castle at night, so be prepared for the eerie ambiance that the noise can produce. It’s a castle, and it feels like it with the furnishings and the candles, sconces, and lanterns that you can light. We found everything we needed in the kitchen (we cooked a nice steak dinner our last night there – thanks again Nancy!).

We were so moved by this castle tower home. The marriage of it’s historic charm with modern conveniences was perfect. It had it’s own special ambiance and warmth. The incredible view and location added so much more to the experience. It was our favorite stay while touring Ireland.

The home is very comfortable. Waking up in the top floor is an exhilarating way to start your day. It’s a bit of a hike up the stairs, which are steep and turn at the top. Thank goodness for the hand rails! The bathroom with the shower is also on the top floor. You do get your exercise in on this one, but it was so worth it. The stairs were part of the charm in my opinion. If you have any troubles with stairs this castle would not be a good fit. We would definitely recommend this for the adventurous types.

As for family-friendly, I’d say it depends on your child. We have an older child who did great with the stairs and respecting the home. The stairs would keep me from recommending this place to families with small children. I’d be too nervous and not able to fully enjoy the property if I had to constantly watch a little one.