First ever Radisson SAS resort in Ireland to open at Farnham Estate in Cavan

February 28, 2006
Cavan will soon become home to the first Radisson SAS Resort in Ireland when the exclusive Farnham Estate in Cavan becomes accessible to the public for the first time in three centuries, officially opening its doors this Summer 2006. The opening of the Radisson SAS Farnham Estate Hotel, Cavan is the latest and most comprehensive reinvention in the long and fascinating history of this magnificent Estate. When owner Roy McCabe, a native of Cavan, saw Farnham Estate split up for sale in 2001, he bought all of the various lots to ensure that it would be preserved in its entirety. Roy wanted to find a resort operator with a proven track record in Ireland and internationally, who he knew would be sympathetic to his vision and to the heritage of the Estate. In 2004 Radisson SAS announced that it would be opening its first resort in Ireland, at Farnham Estate in Cavan. The site has had a long and complex history of development, with various successive members of the Maxwell family, the Barons Farnham, revising original buildings and constructing new ones while incorporating elements of previous developments. The first Baron Farnham, John Maxwell, began building on the site of the present house in the early part of the 1700s. The original house is thought to have stood to the northeast of the present building. Its precise location is unclear, as it was part of the section demolished after 1963. The existing Tower House forms part of the only visible remaining fabric, dating from the late seventeenth century. Extensive reconstruction of the house was undertaken by the third Baron Farnham, Barry Maxwell in the 1780s under the direction of architect James Wyatt, who also worked on Coole Castle in County Fermanagh. The exterior was a simple classical design, of which only the portico now remains. In 1802 Francis Johnston, architect for Dublin's G.P.O. and Slane Castle, was engaged to complete an extension of the existing house, providing an edifice to the southwest garden front. This is the building that survives today as Farnham House, which is now incorporated as the centrepiece of the hotel complex design. A combination of world-class architects, spa and interior designers have been brought together at Farnham to sensitively and stylishly connect the existing elements of the original buildings with subtly sleek contemporary spaces, producing a breathtaking marriage of past and present. The Radisson SAS Farnham Estate Hotel has been designed by Irish architects Gilroy McMahon, previously responsible for the sensitive redevelopment of the National Museum at Collins' Barracks, and for the fabulous new Croke Park buildings. The interiors are by Project Orange, a London-based team of sophisticated, cutting-edge designers responsible for some of the most intriguing new developments in boutique hotels, private homes and retail spaces around the U.K. and abroad. The Radisson SAS Farnham Estate Hotel includes 158 bedrooms and suites, restaurants, lobby bar, 440 capacity conference centre, and the full refurbishment of Farnham House to provide guest suites, public reception rooms and a cellar bar. The jewel in the crown of the development is the extraordinary new 40,000 square foot wellness centre, designed by the world's leading spa designer Heinz Schletterer, based in Austria. This is not just an ordinary hotel spa, but a world-class wellness centre where guests can enjoy a complete range of therapies specially formulated to take indulgence to new heights. The wellness centre incorporates 18 dry and wet treatment rooms, large fully equipped gymnasium, relaxation rooms with soft lighting and waterbeds, glazed meditation garden, hot and cold splash pools with light therapy, herbal aroma bath and a magnificent indoor/outdoor infinity pool designed to make the most of the stunning views over some of Farnham's woodlands. In Ireland's largest, and easily most beautiful hotel spa facility, the truly sumptuous surroundings and sophisticated therapies are an appropriate match for their idyllic setting. An 18 hole championship golf course designed by Jeff Howes, to include a driving range, contemporary clubhouse and golf academy is also due to open in 2008. Radisson SAS Farnham Estate, Cavan naturally provides all possible facilities required for conference and banqueting events, with 629 sq metres of function room capacity to avail of and the very latest in audio-visual equipment, making it the ideal choice for business conferences, weddings, parties and meetings. The conference centre, which is complimentary to the spa facilities and scaled accordingly, can house up to 600 people, and has three interconnecting major function rooms, and a suite of ten smaller meeting rooms. These varying sized spaces are located inside the walled vegetable garden. The conference centre in this beautiful setting is the ideal venue for local bodies and authorities to use throughout the year for meetings, award ceremonies, fundraising events and AGM's. Farnham Estate has 500 hectares of walking trails, and anything from a gentle stroll to a lengthy trek can be enjoyed through the incredible range of ancient redwood, cedar, copper beech, scots pine and yew trees surrounding the estate. The natural beauty of the landscape is being painstakingly conserved and developed by some of Ireland's finest gardeners and conservationists. In addition there is fine fishing on Farnham Lake, and 1300 acres of parkland and rolling pasture to enjoy, offering each guest the opportunity to retreat to nature while still surrounded by utter luxury. The wealth and beauty of Farnham's own plant life is reflected in the theme of the dining experience in the Radisson SAS Farnham Estate Hotel. The hotel's Botanical Restaurant menu includes the finest of Irish produce and is a sophisticated and creative celebration of the Irish botanical world, where cereals, root and leaf vegetables take centre stage and where native herbs, mushrooms and edible blossoms from the Estate can be discovered by diners, whether they are visiting from the four corners of the globe or from the surrounding local area. Also a central element of the restaurant is the spectacular Glasshouse that can seat ten to twelve people for private dining. The bar in the former wine cellars under the main house, the Wine Goose Cellars, continues the botanical theme of the resort with vitis vinifera, the grapes that make wine. The cellars are organised to look like a succession of tasting rooms, made for lounging and socialising as if in a Bordeaux château. The new hotel will also provide exciting new job opportunities for people living in the surrounding area, who will be working with some of the hospitality industry's most experienced professionals. Sheila Gray, who has over 20 years experience in some of Ireland and the U.K.'s most prestigious hotels, has been appointed as General Manager of the hotel. Her experience includes the Radisson Edwardian, Thistle Hotels and Forte Hotels and she was previously General Manager at the Slieve Russell Hotel Golf & Country Club. Director of Sales and Marketing Vari McGreevy also brings invaluable experience to the Estate, having worked previously as Marketing and Sales Director of the Marriott Druid's Glen Hotel and Golf Club and Faithlegg Hotel and Golf Club in Waterford. She is also a former Irish International golfer. "We are very excited about the opening of a Radisson SAS Resort in Ireland," Mr. Christian Gartmann, Area Vice President for Rezidor SAS UK & Ireland commented while speaking recently about the wonderful new development, adding "the Farnham Estate is an integral part of Irish history and heritage, something that Radisson SAS truly wishes to enrich." The hotel aspires to add to the close- knit community life in the surrounding countryside in every possible way. The new Radisson SAS Farnham Estate Hotel would like to take this opportunity to cordially invite the Cavan GAA team, their associates and supporters to fully avail of and enjoy the new facilities available to them and looks forward to welcoming them to Farnham Estate, while wishing them the very best of sporting success in the future. For Sales Enquiries: Vari McCreevy, Director of Sales & Marketing, Radisson SAS Farnham Estate Pre Opening Office: Unit 15, Church View Square, Church Street, Cavan Town, Co. Cavan, Ireland. T: + 353 (0) 49 4365801 M: + 353 (0) 87 9797214 E: [email protected] W: www.Farnham.RadissonSAS.com


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