Markree Castle

Collooney, Co. Sligo

This historic Irish castle venue is nestled in the stunning North West of Ireland in County Sligo. Markree Castle, with its relaxed atmosphere, picture-perfect 500-acre grounds and luxury accommodation, provides the ideal location for that truly unforgettable getaway you have always dreamed of.

The blazing fire in the Grand Hall, period features and furnishings, and the breath-taking inter-linked dining rooms create an authentic, old-world atmosphere to instantly transport you back in time.

A fairy-tale pairing of elegance and exemplary service, Markree Castle has been lovingly and extensively renovated to the highest standard, making it a great destination for those looking to book a room for a short break, through to those looking to stage an elaborate gathering or corporate event.

Bedrooms

You can choose from one of 31 individually-designed luxurious bedrooms. All rooms include the following:

  • Flat-screen television
  • Luxurious en-suite bathroom
  • Thermostatic heat controls
  • Tea and coffee making facilities


Castle Double Room

Castle Double Room

Each Castle Double Room has been designed to take full advantage of the wonderful and unique layout of the castle. This room type offers all the comforts and luxuries you would expect in a modern hotel and much more, all while keeping that unique, magical, castle style.

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Castle Deluxe Double Room

Castle Deluxe Double

When staying in one of Markree's elegant Castle Double Deluxe Rooms, it is impossible not to gaze out through the large windows and enjoy the stunning view of the castle grounds.

Tastefully blending stylish furniture with a modern style decor, the Castle Double Deluxe Bedroom accommodates one or two guests in queen-sized double beds.

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The Potting Shed

The Potting Shed Kitchen

The Potting Shed is the former gardener's shed, located beside the castle. It is stylishly decorated and comes with its own kitchen and sitting room area. There is a large bedroom on the second floor. The Potting Shed has wonderful views of the garden and has its own private entrance. Please note that there is no direct access to the castle from The Potting Shed.

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The Johnny Cash Room

The Johnny Cash Room

The Johnny Cash Room is a breath-taking spacious, bright bedroom located on the first floor of the castle. This room boasts a stunning king-sized canopy bed, free-standing bath in the bedroom and tall windows overlooking the beautifully manicured gardens.

This room is, of course, named after the legendary singer, Johnny Cash, who booked out the entire castle for three days in 1990. This was the best room in the house at that time and was occupied by Mr Cash for the time he stayed in the castle.

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The Maude Gonne Suite

The Maude Gonne Suite

Discreetly located along the flag-stoned corridors of the oldest part of the castle, this three-room apartment is a wonderfully quirky and luxurious space. Enjoy a nightcap from the in-room bar located in your sitting room, while relaxing in front of your cosy open fire.

The bathroom and dressing rooms offer ‘his & hers’ showers, vanity unit, sinks and a Victorian freestanding-clawed bathtub. The bedroom is richly decorated with crisp linens and soft, indulgent fabrics adorn the spectacular king-sized bed.

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Markree Family Rooms

Markree Family Room

Each Family Room has a large king-sized bed and two separate single beds, making it the perfect haven for a family getaway.

These spacious rooms have enough space to include a cot for your little ones or an extra camp bed to allow for the whole family to have a peaceful and comfortable night’s sleep.

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Corporate and Exclusive Use

Choosing to hire this 17th-century Irish castle exclusively is a sure-fire way of making your celebration or event one to remember. Markree Castle caters for everything, from gatherings with family and friends, product launches and conferences, to sit-down gala dinners and drinks' receptions.

Markree Castle has 31 luxurious bedrooms, sleeping 31 guests on a single-occupancy basis and 60 on a double-occupancy basis.

Let us know your requirements!

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Leisure

The Estate
The 500-acre grounds are yours to explore, with mature trees, meticulously manicured gardens, and even the River Unshin flowing through the castle estate.

Golf
County Sligo is considered a Mecca for golfers, with no fewer than a dozen of Ireland’s top golf courses within easy reach of the castle.

Hawk Walks
Take a hawk for a walk with Sligo Falconry. Your instructor will teach you how to ‘cast’ your hawk into trees and recall it to land on your gloved fist, as you walk through the woods at Markree. As you walk, your hawk will follow you from tree to tree.

Stand-up Paddling
Paddle the river at Markree downstream to Ballisodare Bay. This is the best way to see the estate and local wildlife as you go.

This easy and accessible water sport is the perfect way to see Sligo by water and enjoy absolute peace and tranquillity. Please book in advance to avoid disappointment.

Trail Running
Whether you are an experienced runner, or just starting out, lots of guests bring their running gear along with them. Why not get the best out of your run and see the local sites and sounds with a guided trail run from Markree into the local oak forest, Union Wood, with Tralua Trail Running?

Walking
There is a range of walking trails around the castle, which is, in itself, within easy walking distance of the Sligo Way. Sturdy footwear and waterproof clothing are recommended for longer walks.

Surfing
Sligo is the surf capital of Ireland with thousands flocking here from all over the globe each year to surf some of the world’s biggest waves. As a result, there are numerous surf schools all over Sligo - so why not give it a go with an hour’s lesson or series of lessons while enjoying Sligo accommodation at Markree?

Seatrails Guided Walks
Discover fascinating ancient monuments, stunning land and seascapes and learn about the unique environment that surrounds you with guided walks along the Wild Atlantic Way.

These walks are for everyone - children, families and special interest groups, adults and retired persons. They offer short walks, half or full-day tours and custom-designed tours over a number of days.

History

17th Century
In 1663, Edward Cooper, a Cornet, who served under Cromwell when his army defeated the O’Brien Clan, was allotted the original 14th-century Markree Castle and the surrounding lands.

Conor O’Brien died in this battle and Edward married his widow, Marie Rua and, with her two sons, they went to live at Dromoland Castle. One son, Donough, was left Dromoland and the other Markree. Charles Cooper, who sold Markree Castle in 2015, is a direct descendant of this son.

Times remained turbulent and, during an attempt by the English King James to regain the throne, the Catholic army occupied Markree Castle and the Coopers had to flee. After the Battle of the Boyne in 1690, they returned and have been resident ever since.

19th Century
In 1830, Col. Edward Joshua Cooper MP, the eldest son of Edward Synge Cooper MP and Ann, daughter of Henry Vansittart, Governor of Bengal, set up Markree Observatory in the castle grounds. For a number of years, Cooper’s telescope was the largest in the world.

“The Observatory of Mr Cooper of Markree Castle – undoubtedly the most richly furnished private observatory known – is worked with great activity by Mr Cooper himself and by his very able assist, Mr Andrew Graham.” - Royal Astronomical Society, 1851.

The observatory remained active until the death of Edward Henry Cooper MP in 1902.

20th Century
The soldier and politician, Bryan Cooper, inherited the castle on the death of his father in 1902 and resided there with his family, except during WWI and when carrying out political duties, until his death in 1930.

After WWI, the castle fell on hard times and stood empty for many years, gradually falling into dereliction. In 1988 it appeared on the front cover of The Vanishing Country Houses of Ireland, a testament to the sad state of decay of many of Ireland's great houses at the time until, in 1989, Charles Cooper transformed his ancestral home into a hotel.

21st Century
In recent years, Markree Castle was operated as a hotel, run by Charles and Mary Cooper, the 10th generation of the family to live there. In 2015, after nearly four centuries, it finally changed hands when bought by the Corscaddens, a renowned family of Irish hoteliers.

On the landing of the castle’s monumental staircase sits a huge stained-glass window which traces the Cooper family tree from Victorian times, all the way back to the time of King John.

Prices

Individual Rooms

Room Type Bed & Breakfast Dinner, Bed & Breakfast
Castle Double Room €200 €290
Castle Deluxe Double Room €240 €330
The Potting Shed €300 €390
The Johnny Cash Room €350 €440
The Maude Gonne Suite €350 €440
Markree Family Room €250 €340

The 2020 rates detailed above from rates and are per night for two occupants.

Corporate and Exclusive Use

Season Midweek (Sun - Thu) Weekend (Fri - Sat)
Low Season €6,500 per night €9,000 per night
High Season €9,000 per night €25,000 per night

Low Season: January - April & October - December

High Season: May - September

The rates detailed above include VAT, accommodation and exclusive use of the castle, sleeping parties of up to 60 people, on a bed & breakfast basis.

Location

Sligo has the most spectacular unspoilt coastal and mountain scenery and a wealth of outdoor activities on offer. Markree Castle is in an ideal location from which to explore the Sligo area and is located on the route of the world-famous Wild Atlantic Way.