3 Cosy Autumn Mini-Breaks On Your Doorstep

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The Cliff House, Waterford

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Ireland’s one and only five- star seaside hotel also has a Michelin-starred restaurant under its belt, making it almost a constellation of starry goodness. With head chef Martijn Kajuiter at the helm of its restaurant, The House, expect something new and exciting every time you pop in – with matic ocean views the icing on the cake. The hotel itself has everything you would expect from a five-star stay, meanwhile a very attractive two-night midweek break costs from €450 for two people sharing and includes two nights in a Deluxe Seaview room, full Irish breakfast on both mornings, one evening meal at the Bar Restaurant and 20 per cent off all pre-booked spa treatments. Foraging, guided walks, whale watching and many more outdoor activities can be booked in advance and cost €50 per person.

Ballilogue, Kilkenny

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Tucked away in a picturesque corner of Kilkenny – by the beautiful River Nore and not far from the winsome town of Inistioge – discover a secret trio of beautifully-restored properties that have become an oasis for stressed city minds in-the-know. Providing spaces that manage to pull off the often tricky business of marrying contemporary living with old-world charm, Ballilogue is self-catering with a difference. Expect a private bolthole of calm and elegance with its very tastefully-renovated Irish stone houses, beautiful gardens and stylish, contemporary interiors full of light. Choose from two-, four- or five-bedroomed comfort from €520 for a minimum two-night stay … stay, cook, laugh, love, relax, recharge and chill-out in perfect style … but don’t tell everyone about it, we kind of want it all to ourselves.

Hunter’s, Wicklow


The very essence of “old-school”, Hunter’s is Ireland’s oldest surviving coaching house and it wears its heritage and charm with ease. You can see why it’s a favourite haunt of Daniel Day-Lewis – and Steven Spielberg, when he’s in town – the patina of age and experience imbues its little-changed walls with echoes of the past. One shouldn’t expect “all mod cons”, however, once ensconced within its storied atmosphere, the click/swipe, information-addicted modern world fades forgettably into the background. Add open fires, antique aromas, unabashedly old-school dining and you have all the elements to create a rare, slow-living experience in a fleeting, screen-addled world.

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