We (my wife and 8 and 4 year old daughters) spent a wonderful evening and overnight stay, followed by breakfast the next morning, at the very homely yet stately Londonderry Arms Hotel.
Last Saturday we checked into our room and it was very spacious. The two girls had a single bed each and we had the double……but on Sunday morning there were four in the double bed!!!!
As we were quite hungry we decided to dine straightaway after unpacking. We were seated in The Tapestry Room and presented with our menus. The girls also got crayons and colouring in pictures but the little one was soon investigating all the rooms and even ventured into the kitchen and told chef Manus to hurry with our dinner!!
For the girls we ordered sausage and chips and chicken and chorizo penne pasta and garlic bread. My wife and I chose from the Table D’Hote menu. We both chose the seafood chowder. The food duly came out and the four of us tucked into some delicious food. The kids loved theirs and our chowder was nice and thick and packed with local fresh fish.
For main course I chose the hake and salmon with risotto and salsify tempura. My wife had the goats cheese tartlet. Both my dish and hers tasted absolutely wonderful. Great use of flavours and colours. Combinations were wonderful. My only comment would be that there was too much green garnish. The four of us tucked into the wondrous apple and almond tartlet and coffee. Overall an amazing menu, great use of local produce, served in a lovely setting by exceptional staff.
I then took the girls on a wee tour of the place and told them the history.It was Originally built in 1848 as a coaching inn, by Frances Anne Vane Tempest, Marchioness of Londonderry. Sir Winston Churchill inherited it in 1921- his room was 114. The Georgian architecture, antique furniture, local artist paintings, open log fire and extremely hospitable staff and exceptional food and service all contribute to its AA 3 Star Rating.
It boasts 35 rooms and can accommodate up to 80 guests. The restaurant is expertly run by Chef Manus. He is very active in the Northern Irish chefs circle and I spent a good half an hour chatting to him.
We then spent the evening in The Churchill Lounge in front of an open fire and my wife performed Henna on the guests and staff!
After an excellent comfy sleep and the best hotel shower I’ve had in a while it was down to The Tapestry Room for Breakfast. This was a selection of cereal and cooked breakfast. Girls had cereal to start and I went for the cooked one. Girls then ordered bits of cooked brekky. Great idea and delivery and limits wastage. Tasted delicious.
The girls went back to the room and I went off to check out the local history. I was amazed to learn that Carnlough was an important place for limestone works and there was a railway connecting the harbour with the quarry. Also there is a wonderf natural waterfall called the Cranny Falls which I never got to!!
Thank you Denise, Manus and all the staff for the great stay!!!!