Afternoon tea by the sea? Now doesn’t that sound great!
It must have been last year when one of my friends stayed at the Redcastle Hotel in Donegal or someone I know ‘liked’ a picture, but whatever it was, my attention was drawn to the hotel and, in particular, its afternoon tea offering.
I’m a huge fan of afternoon tea anyway, but the picture of their high tea and the stunning sea views behind it put it on my list of ‘must-dos’.
That chance came at the end of September when Redcastle asked if I would like to experience what the hotel has to offer. I really couldn’t wait and my mum, 8 month old daughter Niamh and I headed off an a girly trip to Moville in Donegal.
The journey took about 2 hours and the hotel was very easy to find. We were welcomed by Feleena who was so helpful in explaining to us about the hotel and the local area (especially as we wanted to explore this part of Donegal while we were there.)
As I said, I was so eager to try the afternoon tea so a few days beforehand had booked 2 of the ‘Afternoon Tea and Spa’ packages which costs €80pp.
This consists of the Classic Afternoon Tea and either a 50 minute Swedish massage or a 60 min Voya Self Discovery Facial. Cakes and a massage! My favourites!
But first, before I could get my hands on any cake, we checked into our room. What can I say- the views are simply breathtaking. From every window all we could see was water.
We had the pleasure of being in the Balcony Suite (from €110pp) which is a luxurious one bedroom suite with a king-size bed, living area and a Balcony overlooking Lough Foyle.
The bathroom has a Jacuzzi and separate shower, while the room also has Satellite TV, free WiFi, refreshments, and bathrobe and slippers.
This is the type of room you book when you really want to treat yourself! Even just sitting in the living area watching the water as the sun went down was so relaxing.
Once we had settled in, it was time to make our way to the The Deck, where they serve the afternoon tea.
Our waitress talked us through the different teas, bringing a selection over so we could take in the aroma before picking. I went for the Rooiboos Tea from South Africa while my mum went for the traditional Chinese Lychee Tea.
Then we were served our lunch. The afternoon tea consists of a selection of finger sandwiches- Free Range Egg & Onion on white bread, Roast Coronation Chicken on white bread, Oak Cured Smoked Salmon & Horseradish on wholemeal bread and Honey Glazed Ham & Wholegrain Mustard on white bread.
This is followed by freshly baked scones with whipped Cream and preserves, and finished with mini cakes and sweet fancies: we had homemade carrot and walnut cake, macaroons, lemon tart and coffee opera cake. The afternoon tea was really tasty- exactly what I wanted. And again, those views really made it for me!
After afternoon tea, it was time for the second part of our package. Mum picked the one hour facial, while I went for the full body Swedish massage. We took it in turns so one of us could look after Niamh while the other was being completely pampered! This is a great package and I would highly recommend it if you are staying at Redcastle.
As well as the spa, the hotel also has a leisure centre which has a swimming pool, sauna, steam room and fitness suite. Use of the facilities is complimentary for guests. Now I didn’t try out the gym (surprise, surprise!) but we did use the leisure centre the next morning and Niamh loved playing in the baby pool.
After our treatments, we got ready for dinner (which I will talk about in the next blog post) and retired to our room for the evening. Niamh went to sleep early so mum and I enjoyed the luxury of the room and the living area, with a great night’s sleep in the big king-size bed! What a great break at Redcastle!
Check out my video and pictures below: