Hotel Review: The Europe Hotel & Resort, Killarney, Co.Kerry in Ireland
A magnificent base from which to explore the dramatic Ring of Kerry, The Europe Hotel & Resort matches traditional Irish hospitality with modern luxury.
The Europe Hotel & Resort is a five-star luxury property situated on the stunning Lough Lein in Killarney, County Kerry, a region known as ‘The Kingdom’. This is the south-western corner of Ireland fabled for its spectacular mountain scenery and lakes, picture-postcard villages and dramatic Atlantic coastline.
Owned by the billionaire Liebherr family and only 30 minutes drive from Kerry Airport, The Europe hotel has received plaudits ever since it opened. Last year its ESPA at The Europe spa won ‘Hotel Spa of the Year’ at the European Hospitality Awards. The hotel remains popular with those wanting a weekend spa break as well as being a celebrated destination for weddings.
The 187 bedroom hotel is busy all year round. When we stayed the hotel was hosting not just one but two big weddings. Consequently the lobby was bustling with activity. Despite this, check-in was smooth and friendly and we were given a Lakeview Room with spectacular views of the lake and gardens and an unusually large terrace. The design of The Europe cleverly utilises its location to maximum advantage so that most rooms are facing the Lakes of Killarney.
The room itself was big with all the luxurious extras you would expect of a five star property. The bed was gargantuan and extremely comfortable with deluxe Irish linen sheets. If you want to really splash the cash The Europe offers a number of suites including the One Bedroom Suite, Penthouse Suite and the ultra large Presidential Suite.
The smart Panorama Restaurant at The Europe Hotel serves a hearty Irish and continental buffet breakfast which did not disappoint. Gluten-free alternatives are available. The other restaurant The Brasserie is more casual and serves a menu with locally sourced food. The evening we were there, the Panorama Restaurant was packed and is popular with hotel guests as well as those travelling from near and far for dinner. It is something of a local institution. There are two bars to unwind in and a terrace to sit outside when it is sunny.
ESPA at The Europe
ESPA at The Europe is renowned though-out Ireland and its easy to see why. For a start it is huge and boasts two levels and an indoor pool which opens out into an exterior infinity pool, where you can relax in front of the lakes in Killarney. There is a thermal suite with a salt water pool, ice fountain and sauna.
Fitness classes are also available including spinning, TRX and Kettlebells. ESPA at The Europe includes 16 treatment rooms, including a Private Spa Suite, heat experiences, lifestyle showers, a fitness centre, Tai Chi Studio and a Spa Café with an outside terrace. Popular treatment choices include ‘Intense Muscle Release Massages’, ‘Age-Defying’ and full-day rituals.
The Europe has two indoor tennis courts and two Killarney golf courses are next to the hotel – guests have discounted golf green fees. There is a large conference and events centre at the hotel and extensive free parking.
The Europe’s extensive gardens and grounds include a Pavilion, used for special occasions such as weddings, and a lakefront pier, that is a short walk from the restaurant and is often used by experienced swimmers braving the cold waters of the lake. The pier is also for embarking on fishing excursions on the lake that can be arranged by the hotel. The hotel provides complimentary horse riding treks around the hotel grounds but are happy to arrange longer treks through the 26,000 acres of Killarney National Park.
Killarney & The Ring of Kerry
Killarney is well known for its history and excellent shopping. In the hotter months there is live music and entertainment on the streets of the town centre that always draws a crowd who relax over a frothy pint of Guinness.
In the vicinity of Killarney are attractions such as the historical 15th century Ross Castle, Torc Waterfall, the Gap of Dunloe and idyllic Muckross House and Gardens.Of these Muckross House is very popular with international tourist. Dating back to 1843 the historic house is a focal point of Killarney National Park – Queen Victoria once stayed here in 1861 and her bedroom is a point of interest.
The breathtaking Gap of Dunloe, a glacial valley in the McGillycuddy Reeks, can be reached via the hotel by car, horse drawn carriage or on horseback. The winding road meanders through the gap as the mountains rise above you bringing you to the shores of the lake which sits at the far side of the valley. The Europe can even arrange a return by boat through the lake directly to the hotel’s pier.
Located on the Ring of Kerry, The Europe is a perfect base from which to explore the area with its majestic mountains and rugged coastline. The Europe can arrange a full day trip through the Ring of Kerry starting nearby at the colourful market town of Killorgin and passing through quaint villages such as Sneem and Waterville before returning through the beauty spot of Moll’s Gap.
There is a separate trip to Dingle, a charming fishing town that is the most westerly in Europe. The landscape surrounding Dingle is some of the most dramatic in Ireland and has been used as the location for numerous films including ‘Ryan’s Daughter’ and ‘Far and Away’. Must see highlights are the views from the winding Slea Head Drive, the Blasket Islands and the Beehive Huts. The peninsula is home to artefacts dating back to the Stone Age as well as more recent Celtic and Viking times.
Double rooms are available from EUR 280 per night
Address: Fossa, Killarney, Co.Kerry, Ireland
Phone: +353 646671300