The History of Lough Rynn Castle Estate & Gardens

Mac Raghnaill family (1210 –1621)

The current Lough Rynn estate is built on the ancestral lands of Clan Maelsechlainn-Oge Mac Raghnaill, the pre-Conquest rulers of this part of County Leitrim known as Muintir Eolais. The Annals of Loch Cé and Annals of Connacht refer to “the crannóg of Claenloch” (Lough Rynn) in the High Middle Ages, 1247AD, with the structure marked on some maps as “Crannoge” or “Crane Island”, while the medieval Mac Raghnaill‘s Castle is mentioned in 1474AD.

The ruins of the Mac Raghnaill‘s Castle are located close to the lake and some 500 meters from the existing Lough Rynn Castle. The historian, Fiona Slevin, describes the structure of the Mac Raghnaill castle as “fairly standard for the time, but it did have a few unusual – and clever – features. Although a square shape, the castle had rounded corners that made it more impervious to artillery attacks and it had a straight stairway carved into the hollow of a wall, rather than the more usual spiral stair in one corner.”

The Mac Raghnaill family had played an important role in the Nine Years War on the side of Aodh Mór Ó Néill resisting the English conquest of Ireland.

 

Crofton family (1621–1750)

In the English Plantation of 1621, the Mac Raghnaill lands in Lough Rynn were confiscated and granted to an English family named Crofton. The Croftons brought British Protestant settlers with them and in the 1620s and 1630s the native Irish were gradually removed from the land.

In 1749, a wealthy landowner named Nathaniel Clements purchased around 10,000 acres in the Mohill area of County Leitrim. Upon doing so, his son Robert became the 1st Earl of Leitrim. On their new estate, the Clements family took up residence in a modest dwelling already on the estate. However, they had their eyes on building a far more impressive residence worthy of their name and their stature – a magnificent castle.

By the start of the 19th century, work had begun on the Clements family’s new home under the watchful eyes of the Earl. Sometime in 1839, Robert Clements died both suddenly and young, which passed the management of the estate to his brother William Sydney Clements. Although Sydney worked with his brother managing the build of Lough Rynn, as a second son, he never expected to inherit the lands or titles. However, in 1854, that’s exactly what he did, taking full ownership of the estate on the death of his father, thus becoming the 3rd Earl of Leitrim or Lord Leitrim as he preferred.

Clements family (1750–1978)

In 1750 the Croftons were replaced by another English family named the Clements. Daniel Clements, an officer in Oliver Cromwell‘s army, had been granted land in County Cavan which had been confiscated from the Irish following the Cromwellian conquest of Ireland. In 1750 Nathaniel Clements acquired the Lough Rynn estate, while remaining on his lands in Cavan. Nevertheless, the Clements started to become more involved in political life in Leitrim with Robert Clements becoming sheriff for the county in 1759. In 1795 Robert Clements became the first Earl of Leitrim. In 1833, Robert Bermingham, Viscount Clements, built a mock Tudor revival house overlooking Lough Rynn. It is this property which is the basis for the current Lough Rynn Castle.

Upon Robert’s death in 1839, management of Lough Rynn estate passed to his brother, William Sydney Clements. In 1854, when their father Nathaniel Clements, 2nd Earl of Leitrim, died William Sydney Clements became the 3rd Earl of Leitrim. He inherited an estate of a massive 90,000 acres which stretched across four counties. From around this time Sydney Clements asserted his control over the estate in an authoritarian manner which won him many opponents among the tenantry. He was unpopular in the locality and in Ireland, his assassination received widespread publicity in Ireland and abroad, with proponents of land reform using it as evidence of the need to protect tenants from the abuses of tyrannical landlords. His funeral in Dublin was marked by further riots, while none of the three assassins were convicted of his death.

The inheritor of the Lough Rynn estate was Sydney Clements’ English-educated cousin who lived in Cavan, Colonel Henry Theophilus Clements, rather than the heir presumptive to the title who lived in England. This Colonel Clements embarked on an extensive expansion and refurbishment of the castle. He added a new wing, built a Baronial Hall designed by Thomas Drew with heavy plaster cornices, a large ornate Inglenook fireplace, and a fretted ceiling and walls wainscoted in solid English oak. Upon its completion in 1889, the principal floor of the house contained a main hall, Baronial Hall, chapel, reception room, living room and dining room. Two pantries, a kitchen, study, smokehouse and store were accessed by a separate entrance. In the basement there were stores and a wine cellar. There were fourteen bedrooms and four bathrooms upstairs.

By 1952, when Marcus Clements took over the Lough Rynn estate, most of it had been sold off to former tenants under the land acts of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Clements lived there until the 1970’s. The estate remained largely empty until 1990 when it was purchased by an Irish-American investor, for a short time it was open to visitors but it was still in need of more investment and care.

Hanly Family (2001- Present)

In 2001 Lough Rynn estate was purchased by the current owners, the Hanly family. They invested substantially in the castle and the grounds. In September 2006 when Lough Rynn Castle finally opened as a hotel, the estate extended to three hundred acres. Local father and son Alan and Albert Hanly purchased the castle and grounds. Over the seven years that followed, they lovingly brought it back to its former glory, so that it’s magic, luxury and history could be embraced.

A secluded location, standard-setting craftsmanship, breathtaking views and the perfect blend of old-world elegance and new-world luxury, has turned Lough Rynn Castle into a truly magical destination.


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Offers at Lough Rynn Castle ESTATE & GARDENS

Stay Wine & Dine

At Lough Rynn Castle, we invite you to elevate your stay with our exclusive "Stay, Wine, and Dine" package, where every moment is a testament to the finer things in life. Begin your evening with a complimentary glass of fine wine, setting the stage for an unforgettable fine dining experience.After, retreat to one of our elegant rooms where, old-world charm seamlessly blends with modern comforts to provide you with the ultimate in luxury accommodation.The next morning after waking up fully recharged enjoy a freshly prepared breakfast to start your day on the perfect note.  

Luxury Castle Stay

The perfect Escape... Enjoy one nights accommodation with Full Irish Breakfast served in our award winning Sandstone Restaurant, take in our Estate during your stay and make the most of every moment you spend in the luxurious surrounds of Lough Rynn Castle Estate & Gardens.

Fabulous Friday

Treat yourself to a last-minute getaway. Our Fabulous Friday Offer has it all, a luxurious night's stay in one of our perfectly appointed bedrooms with modern amenities and elegant surroundings. Enjoy Dinner in our Award Winning Sandstone Restaurant and Full Irish Breakfast the next morning. Don't rush off, enjoy our estate, take a stroll in our Walled Gardens, and relax in the Baronial Hall, maybe treat yourself to Afternoon Tea? Enjoy every minute with us.

Golden Moments Package

Create Memories for life with Lough Rynn Castle Estate and Gardens, our luxurious bedrooms await you.  For 2 nights of complete bliss, our Golden Moments package in one of Irelands most authentic Castle Hotels awaits you.  A hearty full Irish Breakfast each morning, your dining experience in our Award Winning Sandstone Restaurant is recommended on the day of your arrival and Afternoon Tea on the second day of your stay.

Afternoon Tea and Luxury Nights Stay

Relax, unwind, & indulge at a Lough Rynn Castle's magnificent 300 acre Estate, see our beautiful Victorian Walled Gardens. Enjoy Afternoon Tea in the relaxing surroundings of our Drawing Rooms overlooking the Rolling Lawns and retreat to your room for an overnight stay with a full Irish Breakfast the following morning.

A Taste of Our Estate

Join us for a relaxing two night break away with a delicious seasonal fine dining experience created by Executive Head Chef Clare O'Leary, on an evening of your choice in the magnificent surroundings of our Award Winning Sandstone Restaurant.  Full Irish Breakfast is included during your stay. Enjoy a leisurely walk around the 300 acres of stunning grounds and experience the breathtaking Walled Gardens.

Bed & Breakfast plus complimentary Cocktail Special

Start your quick escape off in style, let our in house mixologist create a welcome cocktail with our compliments, using only the best of ingredients, indulge and enjoy... Breakfast served the next morning in our Award Winning Sandstone Restaurant. Don't rush off... take in the rest of our Estate, The Walled Gardens await you.

Family Fun Self Catering Package

A home away from Home Holiday in Lovely Leitrim! Enjoy a 2 night family break away in our spacious self catering houses with a Breakfast Hamper for your convenience and Tickets for the family to either The Lough Key Experience or The Arigna Mining Experience

Taste Tuesday

Enjoy a fabulous taste of life at Lough Rynn Castle with an overnight stay in one of our luxurious rooms, a complimentary glass of prosecco on arrival, dinner in our award winning Sandstone Restaurant, served with a complimentary glass of our house wine and our famous full Irish Breakfast the following morning.

Fine Dining Getaway

A Gourmet treat awaits you here at Lough Rynn Castle Estate, let our Fine Dining Head Chef Cathal O'Concubhair and team take you on a culinary journey you wont forget.  Your one night escape includes a delicious dinner served in our Award Winning Sandstone Restaurant and Breakfast before departure.  Make the most of your stay and take in the rest of our estate  the magical Walled Gardens await you.

Midweek Getaway

We have the perfect location just waiting for you to escape to...It doesn't have to be the weekend!  Take full advantage of our Midweek special rates, whether you are looking for a Gourmet Break or an Afternoon Tea Retreat Lough Rynn Castle Estate and Gardens is your perfect place

Luxury Self Catering Accommodation

The Cottages at Lough Rynn Castle Estate & Gardens are set within an easy 3 minute stroll from the Castle. These newly built luxurious three bedroom holiday homes accommodate up to five people. Here you will enjoy the wonderful setting and facilities of Lough Rynn in the comfort of a homely envoirnment.

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