Tucked away in County Mayo, Ashford Castle packs in plenty of glamour, romance and Irish charm, making it one seriously stunning wedding venue. Bursting at the seams with fairy-tale credentials and with a character-filled history to match, the castle is currently undergoing a three-phase restoration project.
Out on a whim in the West of the Emerald Isle, this magnificent 13th century castle is right on the Northern tip of Lough Corrib and is the ideal venue choice if you really want to get away from it all on your big day. Overlooking the water itself; surrounded by lush woodland, and, with 350 acres of land, you won’t need to worry about keeping the neighbours up.
Back in 2001, Ireland native Pierce Brosnan chose five-star Ashford Castle as the location for his wedding to wife Keely Shaye Smith. A pretty spectacular occasion, the former 007 hired 15 helicopters to transport his 100 guests from the castle itself to nearby Ballintubber Abbey for the ceremony in a big day that ran into six figures.
As soon as you drive over the brow of the hill and glimpse the grey stone medieval castle for the first time, you’ll realise you’re in a magical place. Grand and luxurious, yet friendly and relaxed, its unbeatable location is really what sets Ashford Castle apart.
After you’ve made it official – perhaps in one of the two nearby churches – treat your guests to a divine wedding breakfast in the George V Dining Room. The heart of this vibrant venue, Head Chef Stefan’s menu is quintessentially Irish, making the most of local cuisine and produce.
Unveiled this spring, the hotel has eight new bedroom suites – the hardest part is choosing just one of them for your first night. Combining painstakingly sourced antiques with indulgent marble bathrooms, the rooms blend the castle’s unique tradition with the very best in modern style. In fact, why not make a weekend of it with your closest guests, and enjoy the golf course, falconry school and spa.
Inside, the reception rooms are a riot of colour and opulent metallics infused with a hefty dose of tradition. Head outside, and you’ll find winding woodland paths, green fields and the Victorian walled garden.
Historic, iconic, and the ultimate escape, Ashford Castle really is natural beauty at its best.
Ashford Castle is available for exclusive wedding hire, with prices starting at €235 per room per night. Dinner menus start from €72 per person, and canapés start at €16 per person.
Visit ashfordcastle.com for more information.