This property is situated deep in the heart of the Irish countryside. It is snuggled mid way up a hilly landscape within a farmyard. People live on the farm so, while both Mews and Loft are private, they are not totally isolated. With oil-fired central heating and wood-burning stoves, it is cosy in winter. For wet or wintry days a music centre, TV with video and satellite channels, and broadband for those with their own laptop, are available. There are horses and dogs on the farm, and sheep and cattle in surrounding fields. A riding-school, and a local country pub are in walking distance. The property is on the Wicklow Way, a famous walking route, and popular with walkers. The medieval city of Kilkenny is less than an hour's drive away, as is the coastal town of Wexford, well-known for its international Wexford Opera Festival in autumn, and also Glendalough, one of Ireland's most beautiful nature reserves. Tomnafinnogue Woods, an ancient oak forest with easy walks, is nearby.
Mews: The surprising spaciousness of the Mews is often commented upon by clients, who expect it to be small from the photos. The kitchen/living room seats 3 comfortably for relaxing, and has a small table for dining. Some clients prefer to eat informally at the coffee table while they watch TV.
The large table in the summer room is perfect for spreading out, whether it's maps, jig-saw puzzles, laptops newspapers whatever. This is where some clients plan their days, while prefer to sit at it with their coffee in the mornings, looking out at the pastoral landscape - sometimes enlivened by sheep on the other side of the hedge demanding their own breakfast, and very occasionally, a wild deer.
A comfortable sofa-bed in the summer-room gives people their own space and additional comfort - day and night.
Bookcases are stocked with books, games, cards etc, mostly in English though occasionally guests leave books in other languages.
Loft: The kitchen/living space of the Loft is modern, chic, and bright upstairs, while downstairs the 2 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms are entered via original old double doors from the yard. The whole building was extensively renovated in 2007 and had its first lets in 2011. The exterior has not been altered except for the introduction of a large gable end window upstairs, flooding the room with light and providing stunning views over the valley and hills of the surrounding countryside.
Internal doors are concealed inside the old wooden farm doors, and underfloor heating modern insulation combine to make it very warm, even in winter. A modern stove with a dramatic chimney splits the gable window with its silver column, and this stove is beautifully warm when lit.
The kitchen leads onto raised decking outside, with views over the gorse bank and up to where horses and sheep graze the hills above. Deer and fox are sometimes seen from here at sunset.
Long Lets and Animal Farm: The Mews would be particularly suitable for people who need peace and quiet, such as writers. It's peacefulness is interrupted only by horses passing by, or the dogs lying outside the door.
Longer lets are available for writers/musicians who need tranquillity and privacy. Please apply to the owners.
There's a well-equipped recording studio within a mile which is available for use.
All the gardens, except for the stables and fields where the horses graze, are available for clients' use. This includes around the house, vegetable gardens and shrubbery.
At time of writing there are 2 dogs on the property - the beloved Tara, who has featured on reviews and now alas is becoming older like the rest of us, and Pie, a little brown and white terrier pup. There is also a cat, a few horses, and a donkey. And, occasionally, us, your hosts, struggling for some control. Failing, of course, but hoping our guests enjoy their stay and depart refreshed. It's fun.
I grew up outside Dublin and travelled a lot before I moved to Wicklow. I got married only a few years ago to Michael. We live between here and his home in Wexford, but I'm more often here because of the horses and the business, both of which give me great pleasure.
I loved it the moment I drove around the corner and saw the old stone buildings. They had such character. A lot has changed inside the buildings since then, but the outside is as it was all those years ago. It's a simple farmyard setting.
Guests' reviews will say more than I can. I think people just forget all their worries when they come here - some love the silence, others like chilling out, some enjoy the long walks, and many spend the days exploring the area, or visiting Dublin, and come home to relax. It's a tranquil place.
The Mews/Loft is 5 Kms from the village of Shillelagh, which has a small supermarket. It is 11 Kms to Tullow, where there are 4 supermarkets, 2 pharmacies, haberdashery, furniture and gift shops, garages, beauty salons and hairdressers.Just outside Tullow is the Mt. Wolseley Hotel with a leisure centre and golfing resort. Also outside Tullow is the highly-respected and beautiful Altamont Gardens. Guests often say that they find these gardens more impressive and beautiful than others they have travelled a long way to visit. In Tullow we often frequent our little Indian restaurant, and there is also a pub with good bar-food, and a local Riverbank restaurant. Rathwood, a nearby garden centre, gift and boutique shop is a major attraction for locals and visitors alike. Walks run through the property, a train-ride for children (and parents!) only takes a few minutes but they all love it, and a well-established Falconry creates interest for all. The restaurant serves high quality delicious food during the day.
Right beside Rathwood is The Chocolate Factory - very popular, has all kinds of confectionary and gives chocolate-making classes.
For those who are interested in archeology, the Ring of the Rath is a well-known and active archaeological site close to home, and not much further away in Carlow county, are 3 major dolmen sites. Near at hand are several horse-riding and trekking schools, catering for all stages of riders. And one riding-school, which caters mainly for children and beginners, is within walking distance of the Mews and Loft. For anglers, Fishing Licences may be obtained in the local town of Tullow, and we can point you in the direction of people who know the good places to fish. Fifteen minutes drive from the Mews is Bunclody, a charming village with a hotel and and excellent restaurant, and a tree lined stream which flows down the middle of the village. Less than an hour from the Mews/Loft is the beautiful medieval city of Kilkenny, which boasts 2 cathedrals, a castle and numerous shops and restaurants. And less than an hour in the opposite direction is the elegant seaside town of Wexford, which hosts the Wexford Opera Festival in autumn, and numerous musical events all year round. It's a good shopping town and has some fabulous restaurants, and food shops. New Ross, also an hour away, moors the reconstructed Dunbrody Emigrant Ship, displays the Ross Tapestries, and boasts the family homestead of JF Kennedy. Both the JFK Homestead and the extensive JFK Arboretum are close to the town.
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Nov 1 2013 - Jan 3 2014
Payment is usually accepted in the quoted currency (Euro) unless the currency and the amount is specifically agreed in advance with the owner / advertiser.