Situated in the town of Ballyconnell, Co Cavan, lies four-star quality, that is the Slieve Russell hotel. Surrounded by a championship golf course, with three restaurants and a fitness centre, my family and I were spoilt for choice on our two night stay there. Every year we make a trip to a different place with another family and the Slieve Russell seemed a likely option. The journey took us just over an hour from Donabate to get to Virginia town, and we met with our friends in a lovely gourmet café called Willows. Once we were fed and the kids were happy, we proceeded on to our hotel. We booked a deluxe family room, very spacious with two queen size beds for four of us and our friends had booked two rooms with interconnecting doors.
As soon as we checked in, it was straight to the 20-metre pool, with jacuzzi, steam room and sauna. Slieve Russell has a fitness Suite with a well-equipped gym, tennis courts, pleasant walkways with several lakes. I was training for a big swim in Glendalough, so decided to do a few laps in the pool, while my husband looked after the kids. We all could have spent hours there but decided to get changed and go to Kells bar for food.
The hotel has a good selection of restaurants, including the Setanta with its European food infusion or if you wanted to go more upmarket the Conall Cearnach Restaurant is considered one of the finest in Cavan. For a more informal atmosphere the Summit Restaurant overlooks the golf course and serves light meals. The eight of us decided on Kells Bar, which is designed like the book of Kells and has a welcoming atmosphere. Everyone was satisfied with the heart-warming and delicious food. After dinner we meandered around the grounds of the hotel and walked back to the bar for a night cap and the kids played in the games room.
The Seven Horseshoes Hotel
The following evening, we drove into Belturbet to the Seven Horseshoe hotel for dinner and were pleasantly surprised by the roaring fire greeting us as we entered one of the oldest pubs in Cavan. The eight of us were seated comfortably with an excellent choice on the menu. This hotel has been recently refurbished: however, the bar still has a touch of character.
The next morning, we feasted on a large buffet breakfast and headed into Cavan town to do some shopping. We strolled around for a while but the kids got hungry, including the big ones. They spotted a subway and we stopped off there for an hour and then the heavens opened up. We ran for cover back to the car and made our way to the hotel for a swim in the leisurely pool.
On the way home we stopped at the scenic lake Annagh and as the rain had stopped, I decided to go for a dip. The water was cold at first but very refreshing, a little boy and his mum were playing in the sandbank at the water’s edge and there were some serious swimmers in wetsuits practicing their stroke and swimming from buoy to buoy. Upon leaving the water, I felt invigorated and happy!
Travel file: We booked our two nights day with Slieve Russell, for more information log on to http://www.www.slieverussell.ie