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Hotel Highlights

  • Grand Georgian estate, superbly renovated
  • Irish hospitality at its friendly finest
  • Barbecues and farmers’ market in the courtyard in summer

Overview

Sprawling across 100 acres of verdant parkland near Slane in County Meath, Tankardstown House hotel is a charmingly coiffed former family home that bears the refined touch of its mindful matriarch. Should you care to amble about the ample green grounds, this elegant estate will loan you boots and one of its four dogs to help you cultivate your inner country squire.

Smith Extra

Here's what you get for booking Tankardstown House with us:

A bottle of prosecco in room on arrival

Facilities

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Tankardstown House hotel - County Meath - Ireland

Need To Know

Rooms

18, including three suites.

Check–out

Midday, but flexible subject to availability. Earliest check-in, 4pm.

Rates

Double rooms from $256.36 (€191), excluding tax at 4.5 per cent.

More details

Rates include a full Irish breakfast.

Also

There’s no spa, but massages and beauty treatments can be arranged: by a fire in the main house in winter, alfresco in the pagoda when it’s warmer. If you're feeling more energetic, the hotel's estate is well worth exploring. Acquire a map (and resident hound Milly if you feel like company) and take a leisurely constitutional over expansive green lawns – be sure to stop by the two kitchen gardens where you can see the chefs browsing the vegetable beds for fresh ingredients in the morning and take a peek in the hen house for fresh eggs.

At the hotel

Hot tub, croquet lawn, treatment rooms, gardens, gym, free WiFi and a library of books and DVDs. In rooms, flatscreen TV, DVD player, minibar and free bottled water.

Our favourite rooms

Things don’t get grander than in the main house, and for something really special, it’s got to be the Master Suite: a vision in cream, it’s heaven for Mrs Smith, with his’n’hers bathrooms that favour hers – huge, with a marble floor, roll-top bath by the window and separate shower. There’s also a dressing room with enormous wardrobes and an ornate old dresser. For privacy, pick one of the courtyard cottages.

Packing tips

Leave your walking boots and dog behind, and borrow the hotel’s instead – there’s a load of shoes, and three dogs: Milly the labrador, Coco the bichon frise and Mika, Coco's puppy.

Also

Pets are welcome.

Children

Children are welcome, and cribs are free; extra beds can be provided for €45. Staff can babysit for €10 an hour.

Read more

Food & Drink

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Tankardstown House hotel - County Meath - Ireland

Hotel Restaurant

Brabazon trades in modern Irish fare, all seasonal and wholesome, with wild halibut, roast duck, and potato and black truffle soup featuring on their star menu. The building was once a cow shed, but it’s much cosier these days, with mismatching tables and mirrors picked up by the antique-hunting owner. There’s also a bistro in the old corn house, with exposed brick walls, a wood-burning fire, tucked-away bar and leather stools; it has a pub-style menu of steak sandwiches and fish pie. Both restaurants close on Monday and Tuesday. On these days, the hotel offers a ‘dinner à la cart’ menu, delivered to your door in a heated picnic basket and a matching cart. Alternatively, order from the same menu but ask to eat by the fire in one of the main house's reception rooms.

Hotel Bar

There's a bar in the bistro serving a selection of ales and cocktails, as well as an honesty bar in the main house – this room's a knockout, with aubergine walls, a velvet sofa and vast windows overlooking the drive.

Last orders

Both restaurants are closed on Mondays and Tuesdays. Breakfast is served between 8.30am and 10.30am; lunch is midday until 6pm; dinner is served until 10pm.

Room service

A dedicated menu and food from Brabazon can be delivered up to your room until 10pm.

Smith Insider

Dress code

Country squire: flatcaps, Hunter wellies and Barbour jackets, but with some crisp denim to smarten things up.

Top table

Watching the chefs at work by the pass in Brabazon; the secluded snug in between the bar and dining area in the bistro. If there’s big group of you (up to 36), book the secret dining room in the former milking parlour.

Local Guide

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Tankardstown House hotel - County Meath - Ireland
Eat, drink, see, do: local favourites and more…

Worth getting out of bed for

Make use of the tennis courts, croquet lawn and hot tub on site. The hotel is chummy with local walking-tour company, Muddy Boots, which can arrange hikes into Meath, Louth and Bangor; spectacular scenery comes as standard. Head to Slane Castle (www.slanecastle.ie) for a guided tour and whiskey tasting (June to September). Fans of the archaeological monument will enjoy Newgrange in Donore, a mound-covered tomb near the River Boyne. Popular fishing locations along this river include Kilcarn, Blackcastle and Dunmoe. For horse riding, head to the Kells Equestrian Centre (www.kellsequestrian.com), half an hour away by car. Play golf at Headfort Old Course (www.headfortgolfclub.ie) or Ashbourne Golf Club (www.ashbournegolfclub.ie), among the most scenic in the county.

Local restaurants

Tankardstown's bakery, Slane Bake (+353 41 988 4716), was born as a result of the hotel's quest for self sufficiency a year ago and since then has earned a sterling reputation for its delectable range of breads and pastries – the perfect place to gather goodies before a picnic in the grounds. The Conyngham Arms (+353 (0)41 988 4444, www.conynghamarms.ie) – Tankardstown's sister hotel – is a 10-minute drive away in Slane with a bistro that serves food-coma inducing Sunday lunches, country ramble-fuelling breakfasts and mains made with farm-fresh produce. In Drogheda, take an appetite along to the Eastern Seaboard (+353 (0)41 980 2570; www.easternseaboard.ie) and pick from the grill options, including barbecue ribs, lamb chops and tiger prawns. In Navan, try The Russell (+353 (0)46 903 1690; www.russellrestaurant.com), for baked sea-bass with scallops and salsa or slow-roast pork belly with cabbage and crispy bacon, or family-friendly Zucchini’s (+353 (0)46 906 0459; www.zucchinisnavan.ie), for a menu with Asian and Mediterranean influences. 

+ Enlarge
Verdant River Boyne valley

Tankardstown House

Slane, County Meath, Slane, County Meath

Tankardstown House is a couple of miles out of Slane in County Meath, and less than an hour’s drive from Dublin.

Planes

Dublin’s airport is a 40-minute drive from the hotel. Ryanair (www.ryanair.com) has flights in and out of most of Europe, including Berlin, Barcelona, London and Rome; direct routes to the USA are offered by Aer Lingus (www.aerlingus.com).

Trains

The station in Drogheda is roughly 20 minutes away by car. From here, services go to Dublin and Belfast (www.irishrail.ie).

Automobiles

From Dublin follow signs for Navan/Drogheda, taking the exit for Slane. Once you reach Slane Castle, take the right turn opposite and follow until you reach the fork in the road, when you should stay left for two and a half kilometres until you reach Tankardstown House. There’s parking at the hotel.

Other

There’s a helipad in the grounds.

Reviews

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Tankardstown House hotel - County Meath - Ireland

Anonymous review

By Mr & Mrs Smith.

Mr & Mrs Smith have just returned from a stay at this County Meath boutique hotel, and as soon as they've unpacked their riding boots and fishing rods, a full account of their luxury break in the Irish countryside will be with you. In the meantime, to whet your wanderlust, here's a quick snapshot of Tankardstown House near Slane… If you’ve ever driven past a stately home and wish…
Read more

Tankardstown House

By Mr & Mrs Smith.

Mr & Mrs Smith have just returned from a stay at this County Meath boutique hotel, and as soon as they've unpacked their riding boots and fishing rods, a full account of their luxury break in the Irish countryside will be with you. In the meantime, to whet your wanderlust, here's a quick snapshot of Tankardstown House near Slane…

If you’ve ever driven past a stately home and wished it could be yours for the night, haste ye to Tankardstown House in County Meath. It has all the personal touches of a lived-in country pile: framed portraits, grand pianos awaiting practice and four prize pooches (a mastiff, a Rhodesian ridgeback, a labrador and a bichon frise) ready for walking. Trish is the mum of the manor, and she rules over it with pride, stoking every fire, feeding the hens, putting everything back in its immaculate place.

The hosts turned to hospitality after their home was used to cater for the Ryder Cup in 2006, and they haven’t looked back, switching the old cow shed to a restaurant, converting the former stables to more accommodation and making the milking parlour a secret dining room. During the renovation, antiques were plucked from all over Ireland, and the remnants are yours for the buying, on sale in the hotel’s shop.

The acres and acres of tended grounds and secluded walled gardens will make you feel a million miles away, but the hotel’s just an hour from Dublin’s bright lights. Come play lord and lady.

The Guestbook

Reviews of Tankardstown House from Smith members

Whenever you book a stay through us, we’ll invite you to comment when you get back. Read the Guestbook entries below to see what real-life Mr & Mrs Smiths have said about this hotel…

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