Ok, so I get to post two reviews for the price of one, because as sure as night follows day, if you overnight at the lovely MacNean House, chances are that you will also experience the culinary joy of the attached MacNean restaurant. That is how it worked for me anyway, B&B at the house, dinner at the restaurant.
Blacklion is a village just across the river from the slightly larger village of Belcoo which is in Fermanagh, while Blacklion is in County Cavan. Blacklion is a one horse town !! I don't mean that in a derogatory or nasty way, but those of you who know the expression, will know what I mean. In fact I'm not sure if Blacklion even has one horse, but don't worry, a quick 7 minute walk to nearby Belcoo will see you have access to a small shop and a pub or two. There is a post office in Blacklion which doubles as a badly stocked mini market - the only thing negative I want to say about Blacklion.
When we arrived at MacNean House after a 6 hour drive which included a nasty skid on one of the many screwy corners on route, we were in the mood for a quick check-in, a cuppa and a lie down before dinner. Alas, our room was not ready at 3:30pm but they did warn us when we booked that check in could be as late as 4pm. The receptionist was a lovely lady and called me by my first name which was welcoming and very friendly without being OTT. We sat in the lounge clinging to our 'carry ons' and waited for the 'white smoke' from housekeeping, and in fact it wasn't much longer before the receptionist brought us to room 14 on the first floor. (There is a lift for anyone who needs that). She also transported with her a little glass bottle of milk for our tea of course.
There is a lovely little lounge area on the first floor with comfortable seats and a book shelf. nice artwork too. Steve Jobs even found his way onto the top shelf there! Once through the lounge we were brought into our bedroom which is located at the back of the house and overlooking the pristine car park (enough room for about 6 cars) The room is quite huge as hotel bedrooms go. Large bed area with a TV, then a seating area by the windows, and another TV, from there to the bathroom which has a big bath AND a separate double shower with one of those big shower heads that would put out a forest fire in two minutes, sink and toilet - of course. The suite contains Tea/Coffee making facilities (cafetiere coffee too), a radio (no mini bar - THANK GOD) and the bathroom has all the usual smelly stuff and pokey thingummyjigs. The fact that the room does not have a safe, says an awful lot about Blacklion. Bathrobes and disposable slippers were also included in our room (not sure if they are in all, but you can ask if a bath robe is something you crave when on holidays !) WiFi for you technobrats is also available delivered by a large flashing 'CISCO' router in the hallway.
The décor interestingly enough followed the theme of the MacNean dining room, which is French style (I'm sure the interior designers among you can describe it better than I), however it is very pleasant and luxurious, the luxury continued on the ceiling with not one, but two chandeliers. I was awfully sorry I had not packed a powdered wig or two, you know, to blend in like.
The bed - a nice king size was extremely comfortable and because the room is located at the rear of the building I (a self proclaimed insomniac) slept like a baby, waking only once or twice to hear a pin drop somewhere in the building.
Breakfast is served until 10:30am which is a decent finishing time and it's served in the MacNean restaurant just down at the end of the stairs. There is a beautiful buffet table set up there with everything you could want for breakfast and then, they assault you with the 'cooked breakfast menu' which is served to your table. I had Eggs Benedict with smoked salmon, beautifully presented but even more beautifully tasting. My wife had scrambled eggs with bacon, and proclaimed them to be sublime. I didn't see anyone eating toast there but no doubt it is available , however, there is enough bread on the buffet table to feed the whole of Cavan/Fermanagh, so asking for toast might just have been that bridge too far. Staff there are just lovely and are a credit not only to Maguires, but to the whole of County Cavan. I couldn't fault them, nothing is too much trouble for them, surely an example of a fine Irish welcome with no bullsh1t attached. Take note all you other accommodation providers - nationwide.
I should also add that the immediate area is really beautiful too, even the village of Belcoo and it's pretty little park leading down to lough MacNean is worth checking out and Blacklion has it's own little 20 minute walk circuit, perfect for walking, jogging or just bringing the kids for a stroll. I am so sorry we couldn't stay longer in the area, but we will the next time.
Checkout was seemless, friendly, faultless. Itemised bill presented with no mistakes or oddities. Put this place on your 'To Do' list, a true Irish gem.
- Also Known As:
- Macnean House And Restaurant
- Macnean House & Restaurant Hotel Blacklion
- Macnean Bistro
- Macnean Hotel Cavan