Cashel Palace Hotel a ‘gem’

Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor just some of the stars that stayed in Tipperary hotel


John Hughes of CBRE and PJ Broderick Auctioneers have been appointed to handle the sale of the trophy asset which was closed down last December by its owners, Patrick and Susan Murphy. It has 19 guest bedrooms and two self-contained suites.

The four-star country house hotel is among the best-known in the country because of its majestic architectural style, its long association with the bloodstock industry and its close proximity to the Rock of Cashel. It was particularly popular over the years with the racehorse trainer Vincent O’Brien and US secretary of the treasury Nicholas F Brady. Other celebrity visitors included Ronald Reagan, Jacqueline Kennedy, Richard Burton, Elizabeth Taylor and later on, Diana Spencer and Prince Joachim of Denmark.

The hotel occupies a 25 acre site which includes lawned gardens running to the boundary of the Rock of Cashel. The Rock attracts as many as 250,000 visitors annually and can be accessed via a private path through the hotel gardens.

The main house stands three-storeys over a lower ground floor together with a two-storey annexe building, a gate lodge and old schoolhouse.

Each of the bedrooms has its own character with many offering charming views of the Rock. There are four private meeting and diningrooms to cater for up to 100 guests as well as the main restaurant and the Guinness Bar. It is named after Richard Guinness who is reputed to have grown the hop plants in the gardens of the palace which were later used in the first production stout at St James’s Gate in Dublin. The hotel has a stunning entrance hall with wood panelling, two Corinthian columns and a magnificent staircase.

The selling agents suggest that the property might appeal to a wealthy businessman looking for “an exceptional private residence”. In that eventuality, the new owner would be free to avail of 6km of fishing on the rivers Suir and Aherlow.

The red brick Queen Anne-style building dating from 1730 was built for the Archbishop of Cashel, Theophilus Bolton. The architect, Sir Edward Lovett also designed the Irish Parliament building, now occupied by the Bank of Ireland on College Green in Dublin. The Cashel mansion was converted for hotel use by Lord Brockett in 1962.