This Georgian mansion was once the residence of the Earl of Carrick. Set on a hill overlooking the River Nore, the 18th century estate is found in the countryside 20 minutes outside the medieval city of Kilkenny.

Choose to stay in the traditional Manor House or laid-back Hunter’s Yard, both which have been awarded five stars. They sit within the 1,500-acre estate which  includes a championship golf course, equestrian centre, swimming pool and fields of horses calmly grazing on the green grasses. French country chic rooms mix antiques and hand-embroidered fabrics.

International dishes are prepared with local produce and herbs at Lady Helen restaurant and a cosy bar invites late-night chats. As Conde Nast state: “If you want to relax and just take in the beauty of Ireland, stay here.”