Adare Manor, Country Limerick’s historic hotel and golf resort, has re-opened its doors after a multi-million-euro redevelopment, planned to establish a ”new legacy” as Ireland’s leading luxury resort.
Led by ReardonSmith Architects, the large-scale project has included the creation of new buildings as well as the restoration and refurbishment of existing properties, joined by interconnecting spaces
Meanwhile, the repair and enhancement of the surrounding 840-acre estate – complete with manicured lawns, newly planted trees and mature parkland – has been designed by ReardonSmith Landscape.
Guests enter via an ornate new gatehouse, inspired by an earlier historic entrance and constructed of the same materials as existing buildings on the estate. A winding driveway takes them past the tidal River Maigue and a 13th Century castle ruin, before the main Gothic manor house comes into view.
Adare Manor was originally built in the mid-19th Century and design flourishes include gargoyles, symbols of heraldry and elaborate stone and wood carvings. These have been restored by the architects, along with the vaulted arches of the lobby.
On the first floor, the 132ft-long Gallery, originally inspired by Versailles’ Hall of Mirrors, has had its stained-glass windows restored to cast multi-coloured glances of light across the space.
Contemporary internal upgrades have been integrated alongside the historic restorations, including a new guest lift, French doors that create guest access to a new parterre garden, and a new classically-styled colonnade connecting the house with the newly-constructed West Wing.
The locally sourced limestone used for this new structure is closely matched to the original to complement the existing buildings, “albeit with a character and finishes that are distinctly more modern and restrained.” The Wing includes 42 guestrooms, a new ballroom and banqueting suite and new back-of-house areas.
Other new buildings include the halfway house, clubhouse, a purpose-built services facility, an energy centre and a spa.
The latter is adjoined to the main manor house on the site of the previous spa. Its stone façade follows the architectural cues of the original building and allows light to suffuse the space while a large new skylight over the pool area brings daylight inside. The new swimming pool and relaxation areas boast long-distance views of the river and the landscape, and large double doors provide direct access to the riverfront terrace.
James Twomey, director of ReardonSmith Architects, said: “The redevelopment of Adare Manor into one of the finest golf resorts in Europe was a very special responsibility for the design team. Now, a new chapter is emerging for the estate as a destination that is contemporary, unique and world-class, while honouring its rich legacy. It is one that will serve the test of time for visitors and guests over many years to come.”
New landscaping features include a Formal Garden to the south of the manor house, described as “playful celebration of forms, shapes and scales, rooted in the historic layout of the past.”
There are also new parterre gardens, cloister gardens, walled courtyard gardens, arboretum planting, meadow parkland planting and swathes of woodland habitat. More than 2,500 woodland trees and 175 new extra-mature signature trees have been planted. Historic walkways and long-forgotten views have been restored.
“The natural, built and heritage assets at Adare Manor provide an exceptional environment of great beauty and national significance" said Ed Freeman, principal partner of ReardonSmith Landscape.
"It has been a privilege to work closely with the client in realising our shared vision for the conservation and enhancement of the estate, improving the biodiversity of the parkland and gardens and creating a truly unique and memorable experience.”
Last year, ReardonSmith unveiled their plans to renovate Ireland’s Cashel Palace Hotel,
which was once frequented by the likes of Ronald Reagan, Jacqueline Kennedy and Richard Burton.