Drive 10 minutes outside of Gorey, Co Wexford and you’ll find yourself at a tranquil hotel that feels like it’s a million miles from anywhere else.
Seafield House & Spa Resort in Ballymoney is famous for its award-winning spa, so it seemed like the perfect place for a relaxing night away without having to travel too far from Dublin (it’s just over an hour’s drive from the city).
Upon arrival, we drove up through Seafield’s long, winding drive where you’ll find the resort’s spacious self-catering apartments and houses dotted along the way.
The hotel itself is located a bit further along, facing the sea, and there’s also a tranquil stretch of woodland between the grounds and Ballymoney Beach that makes it perfect for those refreshing winter walks.
It’s been open since 2007 and has 102 rooms, though it’s still got the vibe of a smaller hotel thanks to the cosy bar and attentive staff who can’t do enough for you.
After checking into our stunning room complete with a balcony overlooking the gorgeous grounds, our first port of call was, of course, the spa. (You get free, unlimited use of its main facilities if you’re staying in the hotel and there’s a small extra charge if you’re in the self-catering accommodation.)
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Their Oceo Spa has been named European Residential Spa Of The Year four years in a row and it’s pretty easy to see why.
They’ve got 14 treatment rooms with an extensive menu to choose from, thermal suites, a 16-metre hydrotherapy pool, an outdoor vitality pool and private spa gardens to really help you forget the stresses of your week.
Wearing a fluffy white hotel robe and comfy matching slippers as I made my way down to the spa, it was the perfect start to a seriously relaxing Saturday afternoon.
They offer everything from manicures and facials to full-body massages but as I didn’t have a huge amount of time before dinner, I opted to stick with the general spa facilities which were still more than enough to have me feeling totally relaxed.
And the spa isn’t their only award-winning feature – The Greenroom Restaurant has also been awarded plenty of those, including two AA Rosettes.
The hotel also has the more relaxed Village Bar & Grill that you absolutely have to try while you’re there, and is where we went for dinner during our stay.
To start we had their ‘dynamite prawns’ with Asian slaw and fresh lime which seemed to us like the perfect name for a mouthwatering dish like this one.
Their chorizo, pastrami, rocket and burrata pizza is a definite must-try main along with a side of their mac & cheese with smokey jalapeno. It might be a bit of a carb overload, but trust us, it’s pure heaven.
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You’re only a 10-minute drive from Gorey’s lively pubs but after my spa session and that whopper dinner, I wasn’t capable of much more than a couple of cocktails in the hotel bar before high tailing it up to the giant, incredibly comfortable bed – it couldn’t have been more than three seconds before I was fast asleep.
Of course, breakfast is by far one of the best things about any hotel stay and Seafield’s offering really outdid itself – definitely don’t skip this if you’re staying here as it’ll have you feeling full for most of the day afterwards.
Even though I was only here for one night, I felt so relaxed and recharged after my stay that it felt like I could have been here for an entire weekend or more.
The rooms are fairly reasonably priced considering how luxurious the whole place feels and they often have great deals like their discount Sunday Sleepover offer.
The fact that it’s so tranquil while also having plenty of nightlife in the surrounding areas means that there’s really something for everyone here – and you’ll probably be planning your next visit before you’ve even left.
Images via Seafield Hotel & Spa