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Sunday, 27 December 2015

Beech Hill Country House Hotel, Northern Ireland

Beech Hill Country House Hotel

Northern Ireland



Price
This hotel is more in the expensive range of prices, but well worth it! Splash out on a 'treat' location to stay at like I did and enjoy it!

Location
It's located a short drive out of Derry/Londonderry in Northern Ireland. I flew into Derry City Airport and was taking a driving holiday of Northern Ireland, I didn't want to stay in the actual city so this location out in the countryside was perfect. You will need a car to get to it. Mine thankfully had a GPS so I followed its instructions and found Beech Hill fairly easily.


Facilities
I stayed in a Standard room which was huge. There are also Junior and Master suites if you really want to treat yourself!





Checking the website, the soft furnishings have changed since I stayed there and took these pictures.


Staircase up to the room I stayed in. 

The Hotel has a restaurant called the Ardmore restaurant (after the village where the house is located) I had dinner there and the food and service was excellent. The restaurant is located at the side of the house, it's a large conservatory with views of the garden.

Other

The house was a country house built in 1739 and lived in by a family. The gardens are lovely and there are walking trails that you can follow to stroll around and enjoy. I was lucky enough to be there in mid June on warm, sunny days so that made the gardens extra nice!



The driveway from the main road.


The brook, the house was originally built next to. I assume as it provided a water supply.


Walking paths, through what I think are the beech trees the house gets its name from.


In mid June the rhododendrons were flowering, a real treat for someone like me who lives in a hot, dry area where no rhododendrons survive!


The Gate House at the entrance of the property with the main road.

To add some local colour to the day I arrived, it was apparently "Cemetery Sunday". The traffic was horrific once I got close to where the house was, police were directing and initially I was ushered past the entrance as I was trying to make a right hand turn into the driveway. "But I'm staying here!" my plaintive cry went out and I was allowed to turn into the driveway just as the enormous charter bus (coach if you're British) was trying to manoeuvre its way out! More chaos ensued! The bus was full of people leaving from a Tea Dance that was held in the house that afternoon. 

The rest of the traffic was due to people coming to the cemetery which was right next to the gate to commemorate loved ones who had passed away. (Interesting to me that this happened in June, my catholic European experience of this cemetery commemoration, is that it occurs on November 2nd, All Souls Day) The cemetery was full, the local priest held a liturgy, this being Ireland the singing and music was beautiful. I went out to experience it after I checked in.


Didn't want to be too intrusive, so picture taken from across the road, people carried in flowers and placed them on the graves.

Final bit of interesting information about my stay. I saw there was a room in the house dedicated to the US Marines. It turned out that Beech Hill was where they were based in WW2. In February 1942 the US Navy set up a base on the River Clyde and the Marines were posted to protect the base. The officers lived in the house and the enlisted men in huts in the grounds of the estate.

I loved staying at the Beech Hill Country House Hotel and if I return to Northern Ireland again I'd love to spend longer there. Highly recommend it!




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