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Irish Blessings

Dara Hirsh | August 23, 2018 | Story Travel

In County Kildare, a smidge outside of Dublin, stands a grand manor that has been passed down from one wealthy Irishman to the next for the last century and a half. Today, The K Club is a five-star hotel where not one of its 140 rooms is alike. Before foregoing my ornate suite in favor of Saint Patrick’s Day festivities in the city, I linger in the countryside to try my hand at falconry. I watch owls, falcons and an eagle use the property’s 550 acres as a playground before expertly landing on the trainer’s arm. I also learn to make potent sips during an Irish coffee-making class; I tour the hotel’s impressive wine cellar (spotting a bottle worth nearly $35,000); I canter on horseback through Abbeyfield Farm; I attempt clay pigeon and air rifle shooting; and I kayak on the River Liffey. For dinner, local venison is served with dedicated wine pairings at The K Club’s fine dining restaurant, The Byerley Turk, named for one of the three stallions from which all modern thoroughbred racehorses are descended. For more casual dining, there’s a nearby pub owned by the hotel, where crab legs and beef pies are the stars. In Dublin, I watch in amazement as the parade travels down the main road in a sea of green. Enlivened by the holiday spirit, I return to the hotel’s pub to watch the England versus Ireland rugby match, which locals describe as akin to watching the Super Bowl played on the Fourth of July. Fittingly, Ireland wins. Suite rates from $1,755 per night

Originally published in the September issue of Silicon Valley

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