Only two Irish hotels were awarded 5-stars by Forbes for 2023
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There were only two Irish hotels that received a five-star rating for 2023 by the Forbes Travel Guide.
A prestigious global rating system for luxury hotels, locations are only awarded the much-coveted accolade after "strict evaluation" on over 500 rigorous standards.
These test the resorts on multiple criteria, including distinctive dining experiences, luxurious beds, intuitive guest care and supreme service.
Among the two Irish hotels to receive a five-star rating was Adare Manor in Limerick, which was said to exude "both Old World extravagance and fun".
"Studded with Augustus Pugin-designed (the architect behind the new Palace of Westminster) fireplaces, the former ancestral home of the Earls of Dunraven carries a regal air, but it’s a friendly destination, welcoming locals and guests alike," Forbes wrote.
"Walls whisper céad míle fáilte —a Gaelic greeting meaning 'a hundred thousand welcomes' — while the manor experience elevates body and soul to banish the knotted stresses that come along with 21st-century life.
"Four restaurants and a spa are hospitable touches, but the highlights here are the outdoor adventures. From fishing to falconry, the sporting options are fit for Irish nobility. And much like the manor itself, the Tom Fazio-designed golf course combines the modern and historical in the most luxurious way."
Adare Manor was also recently named the "Best Resort in the World" at the 2022 Condé Nast Traveler Readers’ Choice Awards.
The other Irish hotel to receive five stars from Forbes was Ashford Castle in Mayo, which was praised for its scenic grounds and warm service.
"Managed by a team of exceptional staff, the former home of the Guinness family expertly blends luxurious pampering with traditional Irish hospitality," Forbes said.
"Whether it’s kitting you out with a wax jacket and boots for a hawk walk, arranging a wine-tasting experience in the cellar or giving a bespoke treatment in the spa, no request is too large, no detail is too small and discretion is always paramount.
"The hotel’s 83 individually designed rooms and suites exude regal grandeur. Features include original art and antiques, fireplaces, chandeliers and period furniture. Many of the rooms overlook Lough (lake) Corrib, where fishing trips can be set up with local ghillie (guide) Frank Costello.
"Back on dry land, there’s plenty to entice, from the scenic nine-hole golf course to zip-lining adventures through the woods to classic country pursuits, including horse riding, falconry and clay pigeon shooting."
Ashford Castle also received a five-star Forbes ranking for its spa, making it the only hotel in Ireland to achieve two five stars.
To compile the annual list, Forbes Travel Guide inspectors visit each venue in person anonymously as typical guests.
Over 2,000 properties are evaluated with only the very best being awarded a five-star rating.
Forbes' inspection process is regarded as the gold standard in hospitality.