First things first, everything about The Culloden Estate and Spa is visually stunning: the immaculate grounds, the stone exterior, the views out on to the Belfast Lough, the majestic interior. Based just outside Belfast city centre (a short cab ride or train journey away), the hotel boasts plenty of calming, open greenery, 12 acres to be precise.
The rooms are impressive both in scale and décor, mixing traditional charm with modern luxury, while ensuring the small details aren’t overlooked (the small, yellow plastic duck made for great company in the bath). The bathrooms are a grand affair and if you’re lucky enough to stay in one which faces out across the grounds and on to the Lough, the view is breathtaking.
The lounge is a traditional affair, with impressive marble fireplaces and plenty of comfy furniture to sit on and read a book before dinner at the Mitre restaurant.
The hotel’s restaurant is truly a five-star dining experience, serving an impressive array of the finest locally sourced ingredients. Although the estate is situated a short distance from the city centre there are still plenty of culinary options, with the Cultra Inn, a short ambling pathway away, offering a more casual affair.
Even with Belfast just a stone’s throw away it would be easy to simply never leave the grounds during your stay. With a spa, swimming pool, steam room and plenty of beautiful space to roam outside you’d be forgiven for just kicking back and relaxing for the entirety of your stay. There is a strong Wi-Fi signal too for those who aren’t interested in a digital detox.
It helps too that the estate’s staff are flawless, convivial and charming, ensuring that you’re relaxed, entertained and well looked-after.