So this was my second visit to Powerscourt Hotel, in the beautiful Wicklow Mountains, and it was extra special as it provided the setting and backdrop for my ‘ENGAGEMENT’. Kevin, my partner proposed to me while we were away on our break and no more idyllic place than here. You can read my full story on my Engagement and proposal here ‘P.S I Got Engaged’.
Below I share some of my highlights and my ‘Top 10 Must See’s and Do’s’
Co.Wicklow is known as ‘The Garden of Ireland’, with its patchwork of landscape, from mountains to sea and everything in between. It boosts the largest of many unique pieces of landscape including the largest National Park in Ireland, the largest mountain area, the highest waterfall and the biggest man-made lake. It provides the perfect getaway and outdoor haven and is only 30 minutes’ drive from Dublin.
During our trip to Co.Wicklow we stayed in the amazing 5 star Powerscourt Hotel Resort & Spa, which marks my second visit to this hotel. Recently named AA Hotel of the Year, it’s easy to see why, as it is an absolutely amazing hotel and I love everything about it, the setting, the luxury feel and décor, the ambience, the atmosphere, the little touches that make a difference and the staff are the icing on the cake. Other distinctive attractions include two championship golf courses, a 30,000-square foot luxury spa by ESPA, a signature restaurant and traditional Irish pub.
We stayed in ‘The Mountain View’ Suite, which is one type of suites on offer in the hotel and it is simply spectacular and oozes opulence. They feature a reception area, separate lounge, dressing room and separate WC, making it extremely spacious. In addition it affords Stunning views across the Sugar Loaf Mountain and Wicklow’s rolling landscape.
I couldn’t have asked for a nicer place and location to get engaged, it was just perfect. While we were here we also did lots of exploring, chilling out and enjoying lots of good food and drinks. I have shared my must do’s & see’s especially for you below and also have a watch at my video, showing more on our Suite and some of the best bits.
My Top 10 Must Do’s and Sees
- From Powerscourt hotel visit the nearby village of Enniskerry. There are lots of nice little coffee shops, gifts shops and restaurants. Kennedys of Enniskerry is a favourite for a light lunch and cuppa, a quaint little coffee shop with lots of nice bakes and delights. ‘Heart & Home’ is a fab little gift shop, the kinda place you want one of everything.
- Take the complementary bikes from Powerscourt Hotel and enjoy a bike ride around the estate. We opted for the ‘Powerscourt Estate River Walk (8km) which is one of 5 routes on the estate, all at varying lengths. This route is for exclusive use of hotel guests, a woodland trail bringing you down to the beautiful River Dargle. Don’t go too far beyond that, like we did, as there are lots of hills around this part of the world and these bikes are more suited for flat surfaces… I learnt the hard way, but it was worth it.
- Take a drive along Sally Gap and stop off at the PS. I love you bridge, where that famous scene is filmed when Gerard Butler meets Hilary Swank for the first time. (where I got engaged woooo). And further along this route, where the battle scenes from Braveheart were filmed, you will see the most stunning landscape and be amazed by the wonder of the ‘Guinness Lake’ an incredible scene and looks exactly like a pint of Guinness. The valley makes the lake to look black and then a stretch of sand placed there creates the lovely creamy top of a pint of Guinness.
- Take a tour in what is one of the most scenic estates, Powerscourt Estate, which is home to its own historic house, beautiful gardens and the highest waterfall in Ireland. Then after that you will have built up an appetite, have a bite to eat in Avoca café, which is to die for, and then finish off with a spot of shopping in the amazing Avoca shop, which is also on site.
- Since my last visit, the amazing Neptune, home concept store, is also here, which I adore and it has the most beautiful homeware and accessories, even if you don’t purchase, it’s worth having a browse.
- Enjoy a fine dining meal in Sika, the award winning restaurant on site the hotel, and try out the ‘Chocolate Dome’ for dessert…it won’t disappoint. We enjoyed the most delicious engagement dinner here.
- Soak up the Irish tradition and enjoy a gin or a cocktail in the wonderful McGill’s Irish themed bar, which is also on site at the hotel. They also offer a wide range of beers and even have their own brew. You can also get a bite to eat here, which is more casual pub grub style food. We were lucky to enjoy live music, which is on at the weekends, it offers a completely different experience to the rest of the hotel
- Enjoy some chill time in the ‘Sugar Loaf’ bar off the lobby of the hotel, where you can simply relax and unwind and enjoy a tea or something stronger. One of the hotels iconic traits is the Great Sugar Loaf Mountain which is visible across the valley, between the tall elegant beech trees.
- Make use of the Espa spa, even if you just want to chill by the pool and take a dip in the Jacuzzi, ohh and no excuses the gym is amazing and is huge, and it overlooks the sugar-loaf mountain, the perfect place to work off the treats.
- Last piece of advice….Book yourself into a suite, it’s worth the experience if you want a really nice treat… click over to my YouTube channel to see my full tour of the suite and some other highlights.