Fernhill Gardens, Sandyford
It is perfectly possible to forget the encroaching suburbs and to lose yourself to fantasy in this lovely oasis on the side of the Three Rock Mountain overlooking Dublin Bay. You might imagine yourself awaiting the arrival of the butler with afternoon tea at the end of the broad walk, as the Darley family did around the time the now giant Wellingtonias and Tsugas were planted there in 1860.
Equally you could be in the Himalayas marvelling at the spring display of rhododendrons in every shade from the towering cerise of R. arboretumto the yellow of R. genestieranumamong the glades of the rocky hillside. Or pretend that you are following in the footsteps of plant explorer George Forrest when he discovered the rose red flowered Camellia reticulatain China in 1924.
The 40 acre estate has been owned by the Walker family since 1934, when RJ Walker began planting a magnificent collection of tender and exotic shrubs in the grounds laid out by the Darleys in the previous century. A series of mysterious trails add to the sense of discovery as different areas create changes of mood. On entering, there is the old world charm of the kitchen garden, hedged in beech with a grid of paths running between herbaceous borders, espaliered fruit trees and vegetable beds.
The stream garden, bright with candelabra primula in spring, leads on to an Edwardian rockery with a central pool feature and planted with bulbs, ericas and dwarf shrubs. The route wanders on to a sheltered area where trilliums and hellebores have colonised beneath acers and camellias. Within the garden you can move from continent to continent courtesy of plants: in one minute you seem to be in an Australian forest amid woolly tree ferns, the next in China beside fragrant water lily like flowers of Michelia doltsopa.
Magnolias provide some of the most unforgettable sights, like the huge flamingo pink flowers of M. campellii, borne on bare branches in early spring, or the ballerina like skirts of M wilsonii dancing in a grove on the hillside.
April Midweek Sale
10% disocunt on normal rates for one night midweek stay in April. No deposit required.
April Midweek Sale 2
15% disocunt on normal rates for two night midweek stay in April. No deposit required.
April Midweek Sale 3
One night midweek in April with 10% discount, two nights 15% and three or more 20%. No deposit required.
Over the past 10 years I spend an average of 190 nights per annum in hotels throughout Europe and the USA, and the Trinity is my favourite hotel of all! The friendly staff and the accommodation make for an enjoyable stay.
Really nice hotel, staff very helpful. Bed very comfy and rooms nice and warm, would recommend it to all.