Q. My mother and I are now fully vaccinated, and I would like to take her to a nice hotel for a short girl’s break, preferably with a leisure centre. She has really missed swimming and the seaside. BD, Offaly.
Missing the sea is something that my mother talked about for months. We finally got her to Dollymount on a fine sunny day and she loved it. So, I can understand how your mother feels.
My favourite spa and coastal resort in Ireland is the four-star, Inchydoney Island Lodge and Spa outside Clonakilty in West Cork. The beach is wonderful, wide, flat and perfect for walks and the sea is sparkling clean. It is really popular for water sports.
The hotel is modern and very comfortable with spacious rooms and lovely lounges overlooking the sea. The Island Spa at Inchydoney is home to Irelands first Seawater Spa, offering a unique experience in Seawater Therapies as well as more traditional spa treatments.
This area of West Cork is very beautiful and there is lovely place to visit nearby, like Clonakilty, Roscarbery and Baltimore. Book on Inchydoney Island. (023) 8833143.
The Cliff House Ardmore
Another hotel with fantastic views is the Cliff House in Ardmore, Co. Waterford. This five-star has an amazing location on the cliffs and is known for its great cuisine.
The Well by the Sea, a destination spa is a key attraction. They use natural products specially produced for the Well using 100 percent natural ingredients, many of Irish origin.
If you like walking, St. Declan’s Way begins near the hotel and is a lovely cliff walk and not too long. There are stunning views over the Waterford coast. The village of Ardmore is very pretty and has won many awards over the years. Cliff House. (024)87800.
Heading to the east, the Portmarnock Hotel has a great location in North Dublin. You can walk out the door on to the beach. The spa here is an oasis of calm. Treatments are with Eminence and Elemis products. The lovely town of Malahide is nearby and a lovely place to shop and eat out, Portmarnock Hotel (01) 846 0611
I would recommend contacting the hotels direct as the summer is busy everywhere. Flexibility on dates will be helpful. Book your spa treatments in advance too.