REOPENED: Cahernane House Hotel reopened to the public today (Friday). Pictured were: General Manager Emer Corridan, (centre), with staff members Scott Kapitan, Mieszko Polakiewicz, Eric Kavanagh (Head Chef), Andre Butca, PJ Browne, Leona Hennessy (Assistant Manager), Peter Bicskei and Jordan O’Donoghue. Picture: Eamonn Keogh


By Michelle Crean


Killarney’s Cahernane House Hotel, described as Ireland’s ‘Downton Abbey’, which has undergone €6.5 million worth of renovations in a bid to return the luxury mansion house to its former glory has reopened today (Friday).

The property has been closed since December in order to allow a further €1.3 million renewal programme to be carried out over the winter months bringing the total renovation figure to €7.8 million.

The 48-bedroom hotel, situated on 6.4 acres of verdant grounds and on the edge of the Killarney Lakes and Killarney National Park, was recently accepted into Ireland’s Blue Book and the prestigious Condé Nast Johannsen’s Traveler Guide. The hotel also won an International Gold Award of Excellence for the best 4-star hotel in Ireland from CIE Tours International in January.

The stately property was built in 1877 by Henry Herbert and his wife Catherine and was purchased by PREM Group in 2016.

The €1.3m works include renovations to the former ‘Coach House’ converting the outside property into eight new luxurious bedrooms.

The elegant Drawing Room, overlooking Killarney National Park, The Library and The Atrium are all being completely reimagined. Julie Goggin has been commissioned with the interior design while architects, Moloney O’Beirne have created the design on The Coach House.

Work on The Library and The Atrium has been completed in time for today’s reopening while the work on The Coach House is expected to be completed by May, explained Emer Corridan, General Manager of Cahernane House Hotel.

“We have had a busy winter getting all the works completed on time for our reopening and are really delighted with progress to date,” Emer Corridan said.

“We all feel very connected to the building, it is part of the heritage and history of Killarney and Kerry and once the latest works are completed it will be one of Ireland’s finest hotels.”

Many of the original pieces from the house remain in Cahernane House Hotel today, including the wooden staircase, the Killarney Davenport table in the lobby and the pillar caps in the lobby, which feature the first letters of each of Henry’s first four children’s names.