The grand, sweeping Palladian-style frontage of this gorgeous hotel, part of the Marriott chain, is almost as impressive as its namesake, Powerscourt House. Guestrooms are large and elegantly furnished; some have balconies with views of the Wicklow Mountains. Everything here is way above par. The lounges are gorgeous, with soaring ceilings, beautiful furniture, and exquisite views. The in-house spa, Espa, is positively sci-fi in its sleek, high-tech design—the pool is lit by illuminated Swarovski crystals—and the menu of treatments includes an 80-minute “warming peat ritual” and a “shillelagh massage” in which you are, we kid you not, rubbed with a lucky stick (both treatments are €145). The hotel has three eateries of varying levels of formality: The Sika restaurant, overlooking the nearby Sugar Loaf Mountain, serves outstanding modern European cuisine (plaice with kohlrabi and samphire, beef with Madeira sauce, for instance). The Sugar Loaf lounge is marginally less formal and offers a gorgeous afternoon tea (€39 per person). If you’re looking for something casual, McGill’s Pub is the place to go. Needless to say, service throughout the hotel is impeccable.
- Jack Jewers