Staying at Glendine Country House
We spent two nights at Glendine Country House during our last trip to Ireland. If you are traveling from Dublin the trip will take approximately 3 hours. If you are coming from Waterford City Glendine House is only 10k via car ferry (a great adventure for little ones!)
We arrived at Glendine House quite tired from the flight, the driving (and getting lost) and exploring Glendalough. We were warmly greeted by Rita who showed us our very nicely appointed rooms and prepared a lovely tea with scones and jam for us in the parlor.
Glendine House, owned by Ann and Tom Crosbie, is a Georgian Manor built in 1830 and has a wonderful history: (from their website) The 18th Century former Dower House of the Marquis of Donegal was built in 1830. It was first occupied by the Chichester family and later by land agents until one of them absconded with a Nursery Nurse causing a great scandal. Home to the Crosbie family for over 60 years, Glendine retains many of its original 1830 features and is full of old world charm.
The rooms are filled with antiques and are quite spacious. All have ensuite bathrooms (also quite spacious) with shower, sink and toilet. The room Doug & I shared with our youngest daughter had a double bed, amoire, dresser with mirror and a wonderful sitting area in the alcove with a view of the Barrow Estuary and a field of sheep. A television was almost hidden in an upper corner of the room. We requested a cot (pack and play) for our daughter (18 months at the time) and were very pleased with the crib and bedding that was set up.
The room my mother and eldest daughter shared had two twin beds, an antique dresser and a chair in the small alcove. My mother doesn’t remember a TV being in that room but I’m guessing that Brenna kept her too busy to notice it. This room was next to ours and also had a beautiful view.
Our rooms were in the older portion of the house and had a lovely sitting area in a wide hallway where we could relax together. Glendine House was completely renovated in 2005 and has 6 “new” rooms as well, also very nicely turned out. For a romantic getaway I recommend their suite. I peeked- it's gorgeous!
If you wish to be a bit more “on your own” Glendine House also offers cottages with a full kitchen.
A full breakfast was offered every morning in the dining room, also filled with antiques. The cold buffet included cereal, fruit and yogurt. Cooked breakfasts included the “Full Irish”- quite tasty (and filling), smoked salmon and French toast as well as yummy brown bread and toast.
Of course all of this makes for a wonderful stay but the reason I chose Glendine House really had to do with my daughters. They have an outdoor play area, Highland cattle, Jacob Sheep and Fallow deer (which can be hand fed carrots).
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Dining while at Glendine House
Our first night at Glendine House we had been traveling for about 28 hours. All we wanted was food and bed. Luckily there is a Centra (grocery) about two miles from Glendine House. We picked up some bread, meats, cheese and other odds and ends and had a “picnic” in the parlor. Rita brought us more scones, jam and tea, and settled us in the sitting room for our little picnic.
Our second night, after wandering the countyside, we asked for a recommendation and were directed to The Hollow Bar. The night we went was Mother’s Day (the fourth Sunday in the month of Lent) and the place was packed. We were able to be seated in the bar area at a very small table with barely enough room for the 5 of us. Because it was a holiday I will give them a pass on being out of a few of the dishes on the menu. What we were served, however, was nothing memorable. The steak was very fatty and overcooked (I know you don’t order steak in Ireland- but they were out of the fish.) The service was slow (again because of the holiday?) and the waitress we had seemed overwhelmed. All in all it was a mediocre meal that cost over $100.
Since our visit, Glendine House has begun offering “The Glendine Gourmet Experience“, which looks delicious. And right across the road is the Dunbrody House Hotel, owned by my favorite Irish Chef Kevin Dundon. His Harvest Room Restaurant receives rave reviews (and as he's cooked for me- just not in Ireland- I can vouch for his exquisite meals).