London, September 2015 - The recently restored Ashford Castle (www.ashfordcastle.com) has unveiled a stunning new spa and gym, firmly securing its place as Ireland’s most luxurious year-round destination hotel. The new spa marks the completion of the two-year restoration and enhancement programme at the castle, which reopened in April 2015 and was recently named the Best Hotel in the World by luxury travel advisor Virtuoso.
With its fairytale setting, range of relaxing treatments, state-of-the-art facilities and magnificent views over Lough Corrib, The Spa at Ashford Castle provides a sanctuary of calm and serenity inspired by the location and history of this iconic building, parts of which date back to the 13th Century.
General Manager Niall Rochford commented:
“The opening of the Spa is the final piece in the puzzle of the phenomenal restoration and renovation that Ashford Castle has undergone since we became part of the Red Carnation Hotel collection in Spring 2013. Complementing the numerous amenities, including the new billiard room, indoor cinema, children’s games room and the array of outdoor activities such as golf, falconry, fishing, tennis, horse-riding and cycling, the Spa makes Ashford Castle a truly all-year round destination for the most discerning of guests.”
A striking new bronze conservatory, designed by French architect Phillipe Bonino, houses an indoor resistance pool with views across the serene Lough Corrib. Three stunning sea shell chandeliers hang here, further enhancing the ambience of the locality and links to the nearby Atlantic coast.
A central design feature is the beautiful Tree of Life mural by celebrated South African ceramic mosaic artist Jane Du Rand, which stretches across an entire wall of the pool area. Drawing inspiration from Irish folklore, the mural centres around an Oak Tree, which the Celts believed was a cosmic storehouse of wisdom and whose acorns were considered good luck. The woodland creatures in the tree’s branches and roots are also found in Celtic mythology.
Decorated in muted greys, earthy greens and purifying creams, the Spa also boasts an invigorating Hammam, steam room, manicure and pedicure area, a tranquil relaxation suite and an outdoor terrace with views over Ireland’s second largest lake.
Five treatment rooms, including a couple’s room, offer an extensive range of indulgent and results-driven treatments including hot stone massage, aroma and marine therapy, regenerating facials, refreshing scrubs, detoxifying wraps and pampering beauty treatments. Guests can choose from three product ranges: organic Irish spa brand, Voya, hailing from nearby Co. Sligo; internationally renowned Elemis and Red Carnation Hotels’ very own B|Africa product range, previously exclusive to the collection’s South Africa properties. Voya treatments are based on hand-harvested seaweed and the traditions from its location along the Atlantic coast. The B|Africa range blends native African plant extracts, the natural goodness of the sea and eco-friendly production technologies. Each one of the spa’s talented therapists has undergone thorough training with the new product ranges to become true experts in these refreshing and rejuvenating treatments.
Those looking to experience the latest innovations in wellness technology can enjoy a PureFlow™ Fitness session, which is the first to be offered in Ireland. The PureFlow™ procedure is specially designed to enhance the body’s blood flow to make the brain more alert, combat fatigue and help improve endurance, performance and recovery. These final two effects are ideal for those having a workout in Ashford Castle’s new gym, which offers breathtaking elevated views over Lough Corrib and is complete with the latest Life Fitness equipment and a personal trainer who will create bespoke sessions according to individual goals.
After an invigorating treatment, guests can enjoy the huge array of activities available at Ashford Castle, ensuring a truly holistic experience in 350 acres of beautifully landscaped garden, rolling hills, shady woodland and lapping water. Expertly designed packages have been devised for the ultimate luxurious spa stay. Including:
B|Together nourishes the body, heart and soul. Rose Quartz, the stone of love, is used to add positive love energy to relationships, enhance compassion and forgiveness and balance the upper four chakras, easing emotional imbalance. With the assistance of Rose Quartz Crystals and B|Africa Massage Oil infused with Rose Quartz, the spa’s therapists craft the perfect massage to B|Together in mind and soul. This treatment can be enjoyed individually or with a loved one.
Other stand out treatments available on the Spa menu include a Voya Seaweed Hot Stone Massage, where warmed Atlantic leaves of seaweed are layered onto the body and warmed stones placed on top to enhance the penetration of their goodness; a Voya Detox Herbal Bag Massage, where warmed muslin bags containing the finest herbs and seaweed are deeply massaged into the body; and an Elemis Aroma Stone Therapy treatment, using warm basalt stones to melt away tension. A full spa menu is available here.
The Spa at Ashford Castle will be run by spa manager Michelle Ryan in close consultation with Toni Tollman, daughter of Mrs Beatrice Tollman, President and Founder of the Red Carnation Hotel Collection. Both Beatrice and Toni Tollman have been an integral part of the design team for Ashford Castle, having overseen its complete restoration, enhancement and renovation. Every guest room, suite and public area has been individually designed and refurbished with carefully sourced antiques, exquisite fabrics, bespoke carpets and original artwork, representing the ultimate in refinement and firmly re-establishing this historic Irish property as the most luxurious year-round destination hotel in Ireland.