Overlooking the Atlantic Ocean on Achill Island, the Bervie is an inspiring place to stay. Husband-and-wife hosts John and Elizabeth Barrett spent years lovingly restoring the building. Elizabeth actually grew up in this house; it’s been a B&B since the 1930s, although today it’s a far more sophisticated place than she remembers from her childhood. Guest rooms are large and spacious, with well-chosen furniture (most of it made locally) and tasteful art. Some rooms directly overlook the sea—and what a view! You can see some of the other islands dotted around the bay from certain rooms, while others have a dramatic view of cliffs. Light pours in from huge windows, and the whispering of the waves soothes you off to a restful sleep. Elizabeth’s home-cooked breakfasts are to die for, and after years of being advance-notice-only, the outstanding dinners are now a permanent fixture. Menus might offer black sole, Clare Island salmon, or chicken flavored with lemon and thyme. There’s a good (and reasonably priced) wine list too. On weekends there’s a 2-night minimum, but the higher rate also includes dinner.
- Jack Jewers