The life of Riley @The Park Hotel Kenmare

Last wednesday there was an  enormous storm brewing. It was my day off plus it coincided with my husbands and we had planned to take our Swiss guests, Sylvia and Jurg, on a day trip. 
Ireland, in deluge, was not what we wanted to indulge in, however there were definitely breaks of blue nestled in those big fat puffy clouds.
 Looking on the bright side  “I know” I said “lets go South to Kenmare,  it must be sunny over those mountains”.
Our first stop was to my beautiful, secret hideaway – Cahernane House Hotel on the Muckross road.
Morning coffee was courteously served in the soft splendor of the stately drawing room, thus giving the storm a little lee way to abate.
Relaxed and positive we left for Molls Gap, Ladies view and the beautiful national heritage of Killarney Park – all gazed at through high speed window wipers. “Look the stream has burst its banks”mossy undergrowth and rocks poked through white water, the trees dripped with shiny prisms of light, it looked magical “The faeries must be out in full force today”.
“Today is the yearly Horse Fair coinciding with the Kenmare weekly farmers market – a seven year wonder, it simply can’t be raining there, that would be too cruel”. my chatter continued, a barrage of fun and equally as consistant as the rain.
Can’t it! We slowed down way before kenmare into a bottle neck of traffic and [I] kept smiling “think positive ” I chirped, determined my day was going to be perfect.
Half an hour later we crept past the bedraggled stall holders at such a drowsy speed we could have bartered for trinkets from the car. My heart bled for the traders, although like the cat with the cream I felt snug and I waved like a queen at bedraggled colleagues, happy of course that the weather mattered not, at least not to me; I had no goods to keep dry.
“Ok then we are going to the Kenmare Park Hotel to lounge in luxory.”
  I also wanted to say hello to Francis Brennan, my on screen mentor from the At Your Service TV show on which we had featured in last January.

Afternoon Sushi

And that is what we did, we holed up on comfy couches in the bay window in front of a moving sea of trees and a wild patch of sea,  and we listened to the wind howling and whistling on the other side of the Victorian windows. Francis, the good man that he is, was thrilled to see us and we felt warm, welcome and happy. Our friends loved the decor, the beautiful food presentation, the tastes and the great service from the staff, who were – well – all “At Our Service”; and very nice it was too.
Our next port of call was the closest grand house to the Phoenix home stead. Ballyseedy Castle is a treasure hidden away near Tralee on the Killarney road.There we relaxed and ate creamy tortelinni in yet another luxurious drawing room with the friendly dogs at our feet.

Lady Sylvia

 There was a rainbow too as we arrived at Ballyseedy which gently framed the noble trees and a sweet donkey and foal.
 We were not  looking for a pot of gold, but hey – our day was just about as golden as it gets.

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