Best Castle Hotels in Ireland

adare manor best castle hotels in Ireland

In some of the best castle hotels in Ireland, you will be treated like royalty, as if you were one of the actual Lords or Ladies that once wandered the grounds of these magnificent grand old castles.  A night or two at one of the luxury castle hotels, Ireland has really is an experience everyone should do at least once or twice in their lifetime.

Whether you are travelling with your family or looking for the ultimate romantic experience, a few nights in one of the Irish Castle Hotels is a wonderful experience.  But how to choose which one?   With so many fantastic castles in Ireland to stay, it can be tricky making the decision.

If you’re considering one of the many castle accommodation Ireland offers, then you’ll love this guide.  In this guide, I take you through 20 of some of the best castles to stay in Ireland so you can find the perfect castle to live out your fairytale dream.  This guide includes all the essential information such as location, onsite facilities, as well as a price guide.

So let’s get to it and find you one of the most beautiful Irish castles to stay in!

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20 of the Best Castles to Stay in Ireland

1. Ashford Castle

Sprawled out over a 350-acre estate in the green hills of Western Island, the Ashford Castle is absolutely stunning.  This 800-year-old castle, once owned by the Guinness family, is one of the most luxurious 5-star castle hotels Ireland offers.

There is plenty for you to do while staying at Ashford Castle.  Activities include horse riding, fishing, golf, cycling, tennis, kayaking as well as attending Ireland’s first school of falconry, take a private equestrian lesson or take a riverboat cruise.  Onsite there is also a heated swimming pool, day spa as well as a range of dining experiences including private dining options.

Nearby there is also a range of attractions including tourist attractions such as The Guinness Tower / Leonard’s Tower, a statue of John Wayne and Maureen O’Hara, Royal Abbey of Cong and Bog Oak Sculpture.  Other options include hiking in the Connemara National Park, visiting Kylemore Abbey or the fishing village of Roundstone.  The region also has plenty of cafes.

The Ashford Castle has 83 rooms and suites which despite being decked out with modern amenities, still represent traditional elegance and finesse.  While most rooms accommodate up to two people, there are also some family rooms.  All rooms feature a TV, minibar, air conditioning, and free Wi-Fi.  Family rooms also include a LEGO menu, personalised storybook, homemade cookies, Xbox and DVDs.

You will no doubt thoroughly enjoy your stay at Ashford Castle, where you will get a glimpse into what life was once like for the lords and ladies of eras gone by.

Click here to check availability at the Lodge at Ashford Castle and to check current prices

2. Ballyseede Castle 

If you’ve ever wanted to sleep in a castle in Ireland that was haunted – the Ballyseede Castle is it! The Ballyseede Castle is a four-star property situated on 35 acres of woodland just outside the town of Tralee.

This boutique Irish castle has 44 luxurious rooms and suites all beautifully decorated, and when it comes to castles, rather affordable.  While most rooms accommodate up to two adults, there are also family suites available.  There is also the option of staying at the nearby lodge which has five bedrooms.  All accommodation options feature private bathrooms, TV, heating, tea and coffee making facilities and free Wi-Fi.

The castle itself, as well as its private gardens, offer various places for its guests to relax.    Read a book in one of the many parlors or the impressive drawing room or relax in the peaceful gardens. Onsite is also two restaurants and bar.

In the nearby vicinity, guests can explore all the region has to offer.  There are beaches, golf courses, hiking trails, horse riding, fishing and boating.

Whether you’re after an affordable family getaway or a romantic weekend for two, the Ballyseede Castle is a beautiful location.

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3. Ballynahinch Castle

Ballynahinch Castle is a stunning old Irish country house located on a 700-acre scenic estate of private wilderness.  This is a truly picturesque property, sitting on the shores of the Owenmore River and the backdrop of the Twelve Bens Mountain Range.  This gorgeous property dates back to 1700s and is renowned as being one of the finest fisheries in Ireland.

The castle features lavish rooms and suites, many with breathtaking views of the mountains, river or the woodlands that surround the estate.  All rooms include a private bathroom, heating, free Wi-Fi, TV, DVD, tea and coffee making facilities.  Most rooms accommodate two people, but there is also the option of a two-bedroom suite.

One of the best things to do at Ballynahinch Castle is to simply unwind.  Guests can enjoy fine dining at the elegant restaurant, meet the locals over a pint at the bar, relax by one of the several open log fires, or sit at one of the lovely terraces that overlook the river.  Other activities include clay shooting, fishing, tennis, hiking and cycling.

Considered to be one of the finest luxury hotels in Ireland, the Ballynahinch Castle is the perfect location for those looking to getaway in the great outdoors – either for adventure or relaxation.

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4. Waterford Castle 

Just one mile from Waterford City, this Island Resort is secluded and private, yet still conveniently close to the city.  The island is surrounded by the River Suir and throughout history has provided a settlement for Monks in the 6th to the 8th century, Vikings from the 9th to the 11th century and knights, earls and family dynasties.

The Castle itself is ornate and beautiful and decorated with antiques representing its rich history.  From gargoyles to monkeys and oak paneling to graceful arches, you will be in awe of the exquisite presentation and history.

It is located on its own private island of 310 acres and is accessible by private ferry from the Waterford mainland.  The ferry departs every 15 minutes and is included in the cost of your stay at the castle.

The Castle rooms are luxuriously furnished with old-world charm and elegantly decorated with antiques from its rich history.  There are also semi-detached, contemporary lodges available which provide modern, self-catering options for larger groups or families.  Rooms include private bathrooms, tea and coffee making facilities and Wi-Fi.

Resort activities include an 18-hole championship golf course, driving range, lawn croquet, clay pigeon shooting, nature walks, playground, falconry and on selected dates, a complimentary kids club.  The castle also features numerous restaurants.

The Waterford Castle is a fairytale experience great for couples, families and groups of friends.  It is the perfect escape from the world with a bit of luxury.

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5. Lough Eske Castle

Lough Eske Castle is a five-star, luxury castle hotel and spa and has been voted as the World’s Best Luxury Country Hotel for many years.  Originally the castle was built in 1474 however some of it was destroyed by fire in 1929.  The Castle was refurbished in 2007 to reflect the elegance and glamour of its time and has quickly become one of the most sought after destinations in Donegal.

The castle is surrounded by 43 acres of lush woodland at the foot of the Blue Stack Mountains a ten-minute drive from County Donegal.  Some of the activities you can enjoy at Lough Eske Castle include fishing on the shores of Lough Eske, walking enthusiasts can discover all that Donegal has to offer while appreciating the countryside and the castle is so close to many vibrant towns and villages, so there is always something new to discover.

If you are looking to relax and unwind, the onsite Spa and Wellness centre offer a steam room, a sauna, a gym, and a stunning swimming pool.  You won’t go hungry or thirsty either.  There is the Oak Bar with a billiards table and nightly entertainment, the Cedars Grill provides delicious meals of traditional seafood, Sunday lunch, and afternoon teas.

There is a range of accommodation options for guests at the castle from rooms for couples to spacious family rooms.  All the rooms are furnished to a high 5-star standard and feature thick carpets, gorgeous bed linen, and soft bathrobes.  Each room has a TV, refreshment station, Wi-Fi, and private bathrooms.

Awarded the title of the Coolest Place on the Planet in 2017 by the Lonely Plant – the Lough Eske Castle Hotel will become your most favourite experiences.  The stunning location and history of the area are more than enough to keep you coming back for more.

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6. Dromoland Castle

Dromoland Castle is a 16th-century castle located in Newmarket-on-Fergus in County Clare and is considered one of the most glorious and finest castle hotels in Ireland.  Its history has been traced back to Brian Boru, an ancient High King of Ireland over 1000 years ago.

The Castle is set on 450 acres of lavish landscape with its very own world-class 18-hole golf course.  There is plenty to do during your stay at Dromoland Castle including archery, clay shooting, falconry, or take in a nature walk around the property and spot some of the natural wildlife including deer, pheasants, squirrels and ducks.  Onsite there is also multiple restaurants, a swimming pool, tennis courts, a gym, sauna, steam and go-karting for the kids.

All the rooms at Dromoland Castle have been stylishly decorated in modern furnishings yet keeping with the royal history.  There are many different sizes and styles to choose from, from a standard suite to executive staterooms fit for a Queen as well as family suites.  All rooms include private bathrooms, tea and coffee making facilities, TV and Wi-Fi.

Whether you come to Dromoland Castle to relax and unwind or to participate in the multiple activities available, your stay here is sure to be most memorable.

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7. Cabra Castle

This 18th-century castle hotel boasts 100-acres of stunning parklands and gardens with the magnificent surrounds of the Dun a Ri Forest Park.  It is one of the leading luxury castle hotels in Ireland and is located about 1.5 hours outside of Dublin.  The original Cabra Castle dates back to 1699 and the current building dates back to 1808.

All 105 rooms in the castle offer luxury accommodation from medieval-style castle rooms complete with four-poster beds to more contemporary style bedrooms featuring old stone walls and beautiful views of the expansive gardens.  All types include an ensuite bathroom, flat-screen TV and tea and coffee making facilities all in a beautifully furnished room fit for royalty.  There is also the option of modern four or five-bedroom self-contained cottages which are ideal for families or large groups.

The grounds of Cabra Castle offer guests the perfect place for some relaxation.  While when it comes to dining, there are multiple options, including the elegant Courtroom Restaurant or the more casual Derby Bar.

There is plenty of things to do in the local area during your stay at Cabra Castle.  Activities include fishing, horse riding, clay pigeon shooting, archery, and the surrounding parklands are great for walks.

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8. Clontarf Castle

Clontarf Castle is a luxury castle hotel just two miles from the heart of the city of Dublin.  The Castle itself dates back to 1172, and some of the original architecture has been preserved.  The current structure dates back to the late 1800s, and the internal architecture has been tastefully refurbished to reflect its historical splendour.

All 111 rooms have been individually decorated in keeping with the historic charm and sophistication.  All rooms feature private bathrooms, a minibar, Wi-Fi, a fully stocked minibar, and tea and coffee making facilities.  Some rooms even feature stunning four-poster beds.

Onsite there are various dining options including the Fahrenheit Grill which serves fine cuisine or the casual Knights Bar serving typical Irish pub meals.

Located just 10 minutes from the heart of Dublin, at the Clontarf Castle you get the best of both worlds – staying in a stunning luxurious castle yet be conveniently located to explore all the cities attractions.

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9. Kilkea Castle

Kilkea Castle, only one hour’s drive from Dublin, was built in 1180 by Hugh de Lacy for the Strongbow’s Norman Nobleman, Walter de Riddlesford.  Today it is a family-owned and managed hotel that provides luxury and old-worldly charm in its 140-bedroom castle hotel.

The hotel is set on 180 acres of landscaped grounds with world-class facilities and three onsite restaurants.  Onsite there is also a lounge bar, Spa and Wellness Centre, tennis court, an 18-hole golf course, archery, falconry and horse riding available to guests.

Guests at Kilkea Castle can stay in one of 140 guest rooms within the castle or self-contained cottages around the castle grounds.  Rooms feature private bathrooms, Wi-Fi, TV and tea and coffee making facilities.  Some rooms even have stunning clawfoot tubs.

Whether you’re after somewhere for a romantic escape with your partner or somewhere to take the family for some special bonding time, the Kilkea Castle is a great spot not too far from the Dublin city centre.

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10. Abbeyglen Castle Hotel 

The Abbeyglen Castle was built in 1832 by John d’Arcy of Clifden Castel.  In 1854 it was bought by the Irish Church Mission Society for use as a Protestant orphanage, and in 1953 it became a mixed orphanage until closing and falling derelict in 1955.  In 1969 the Hughes family took over and developed the Abbeyglen Castle into the luxury hotel it is today.

The Abbeyglen Castle is located amongst the Twelve Bens Mountains and is close to the Connemara National Park.  Other attractions in the local area include Kylemore Abbey, Marconi Museum, Alcock and Brown Museum and The Sky Road.  The castle is also just a short 6-minute walk to the village of Clifden which has shopping and pubs.

The hotel has a total of 48 luxury suites, each with its own individual style and character.  All rooms are heated with a TV and DVD player, tea and coffee making facilities, and all come with their own private ensuite.  Some of the superior suites include four-poster beds and claw-foot baths.

The Abbeyglen Castle enjoys regular, spontaneous musical evenings in the Piano Bar with some of the best local voices and on Tuesday night all things Irish including food and music are prepared for the guests.  Other facilities on-site include a restaurant, day spa, tennis court and a small 9-hole putt course.

There is no shortage of things to do in the area as well as in the castle grounds.  Come with your friend or family and relax in your own slice of paradise fit for a King or a Queen.

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11. Wilton Castle Hotel

Wilton Castle is situated on the banks of the Boro River, in the heart of County Wexford and is surrounded by lush countryside ready for you to explore.  The earliest reference to Wilton Castle Hotel dates back to 1247 when it was owned by Willian de Dene.  The stories from this point in time are varied and exciting and make the Castle the tourist adventure it is today.

There are four timelessly decorated suites in Wilton Castle named after four of the families that have resided in the Castle over its history.  Each suite is decorated in its own individual style and character and is either one, two or three-bedroom apartments.  All suites are fully self-contained coming with its’ own kitchen, sitting room with fireplace, bathroom and TV.

Numerous festivals and events occupy the County of Wexford throughout the year and you will always have something to do with your days.  County Wexford has plenty on offer for the young and old like the Irish National Heritage Park, Kingsford Riding Stables, Wexford Playzone, golf club, lavender farm and more.

If you’re after luxurious solitude and endless places to explore, Wilton Castle Hotel is a must-do at least once in your lifetime.

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12. Belleek Castle

Belleek Castle was built between 1825 and 1831 and sits among 1000 acres of private woodland on the River Moy.  The Castle is in Ballina near the Ceide fields, The Abbey’s Belleek Woods and Nephin Mountain.  Inside the hotel, you will find endless hidden treasures and stories about all the previous owners and the antiques on display are incredible.

The Castle enjoys a casual and friendly atmosphere and is close to Ballina, the largest town in County Mayo.  Ballina is famous for numerous tombs dating back to the stone age and travellers will delight at the Castle’s own original heritage.  The Castles history is fascinating, and you will definitely want to take a tour of the castle during your stay.

The rooms are luxuriously furnished in elegant antique furnishings.  Each room has a private bathroom, flat-screen TV, Wi-Fi, tea and coffee making facilities and all rooms are heated.   The castle also features an iconic Irish Country House restaurant and a café on site.

The Belleek Castle hotel is unpretentious and friendly where you can spend your days exploring the local area and nights relaxing by the open log fire.

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13. Lough Rynn Castle Hotel

Lough Rynn is a 19th century Castle, located on the shore of Lough Rynn and is one of the finest homes in Ireland. The grounds of the Victorian Manor are vast with some 300 acres and are well-manicured containing beautiful green grass, beautiful old trees and a stunning coastline.

The castle is today a modern 4-star hotel which is filled with gorgeous antiques, open fires, wood panelling and decorative stone and glasswork.  There are 44 luxurious guest rooms which are configured as doubles or singles.  Each room features a private bathroom, TV, fireplace, Wi-Fi and tea and coffee making facilities.  For families, there is the option of staying in the former stables, which has been converted into lovely spacious guest rooms.

Onsite be sure to dine at the Sandstone Restaurant which serves delicious meals with local produce.  While within the nearby area, guests can participate in a range of activities such as golf, fishing, horse riding, kayaking, scenic walks and more.

At Lough Rynn Castle Hotel, step back in time, and explore one of Irelands finest and oldest homes all while being surrounded by modern-day conveniences.

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14. Castle Leslie Estate

Castle Leslie is just over an hour’s drive from both Dublin and Belfast in a quiet country estate in County Monaghan.  The 19th-century castle is situated among 1000 acres of the Irish countryside, which includes three lakes, gorgeous parkland and woodlands containing trees from the Celtic times such as Oak, Ash and Sycamore.

The Castle features 20 guest rooms with authentic original interiors and old-style hospitality mixed in with all the modern-day conveniences.  There are also an additional 50 guestrooms in the lodge as well as a range of self-contained cottages which are all on the castle grounds.  All rooms feature private bathrooms, Wi-Fi and TV.

Activities while staying at Castle Leslie Estate are vast and varied.  Guest can explore the estate ground on foot, take part in cooking classes, go fishing, clay shooting, indulge in treatments at the day spa, go horseback riding and eat at the onsite award-winning Snaffles Restaurant.  Nearby other activities include hiking in the Mourne Mountains or the Slieve Donard Mountain, exploring the Mourne Wall and the Beaghmore Stone Circles.  For Game of Throne fans, there are also various filming locations close by.

With so many activities available at Castle Leslie as well as the nearby area, you could easily come for a week or simply spend a few days here unwinding.

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15. Kilronan Castle Hotel

The Kilronan Castle was built in the 1820s, and its estate is 40 acres, along the shores of Lough Meelagh.  The location is stunning with the castle surrounded by rolling green pastures, ancient forests and overlooking a glistening lake.  Once the home of the Tennison family, this is one of the few Irish castles that can trace its history back to the royal families.

The castle features 84 spacious and light airy guest rooms featuring old-world décor.  Each of the rooms features private bathrooms, antique furniture, TV and tea and coffee making facilities.  Some of the rooms even have stunning four-poster beds.  Another option for families or large groups is to stay in one of the self-contained cottages on site.

Guests at the Kilronan Castle Hotel can participate in a range of activities.  On-site there is a fine dining restaurant, guest lounge, hot tubs, sauna, steam room, gym and indoor swimming pool.  There is also a day spa on site which offers a range of lovely treatments.  Other local activities include hiking, golf, sailing and biking.  Plus the Lough Key Forest and Activity Park are just a 20-minute drive away, which has a variety of wildlife and historic buildings.

Kilronan Castle is one of Ireland’s most luxurious hotels, where from the moment guests make their way up the meandering driveway, they will feel like royalty and be taken back to a time long ago.

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16. Adare Manor

While perhaps not technically a castle, this grand structure still well and truly deserves its place in this list of the best castle hotels in Ireland.  The Adare Manor is a neo-Gothic architectural masterpiece, located in the picturesque town of Adare and is surrounded by 840 acres of gorgeous parkland.

Built in the mid-1800s, the Adare Manor is a 5-star hotel and offers guests 104 stunning luxurious rooms.  Each of the rooms is lavishly decorated and features original art, Georgian style furnishings, luxurious textiles, marble bathrooms and gorgeous views.  All rooms include beautiful bed linen, complimentary mini bar, fresh fruit, tea and coffee making facilities, fresh flowers, bottled mineral water, TV with on-demand movies, Wi-Fi and iPad with access to online newspapers and magazine.

If you do happen to leave the luxury confines of your bedroom, you can participate in several onsite activities.  Activities include golf, treatments at the day spa (including pool and gym), falconry, archery, fishing as well as eating at one of the various dining options on-site – the Tack Room, the Oak Room, the Drawing Room or the Carriage House.  In the local area, guests can explore ancient ruins of several monasteries dating back to Medieval times as well as visit the old Desmond Castle.

For those that want to stay in Ireland’s finest of accommodation, you really can’t get much better than Adare Manor.  Every inch of this property has been designed with beauty and luxury in mind and the staff at Adare Manor will ensure that your every need and desire is met from the moment you arrive.

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17. Markree Castle

Located in the northwest of Ireland, the Markree Castle recently reopened as a hotel in 2017 after undergoing extensive renovations to make an Irish hotel of the highest standards.  The hotel is situated on 500 acres of private land.

The 17th-century castle features 31 luxury bedrooms as well as a three-bedroom apartment.  Each of the guest rooms include modern conveniences such as a TV, ensure bathroom, tea and coffee making facilities, Wi-Fi and stunning views across the castle grounds.  There is a range of bedding configurations including doubles, twins and family suites.

As well as the chance to relax and unwind, the castle offers guests a range of activities.  On-site activities include hawk walks, stand up paddle boarding in the river and walking trails.  The castle also has a restaurant and bar.

The Markree Castle is a stunning place for a relaxing getaway, and it is evident that its new owners have placed a lot of care in the recent renovations.  All guests staying at Markree Castle can be assured of a peaceful and relaxing stay.

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18. Kinnitty Castle Hotel

The Kinnitty Castle in the sweet village of Kinnitty is a grand castle which was originally claimed by the Normans in 1209 (it has since burned down and been rebuilt).  This gothic revival castle is set on 650 acres of parkland at the foothills of the Slieve Bloom Mountains in the heart of the Irish Countryside.

All the 37 guest rooms at the castle have been beautifully decorated in an old-world style and feature period furnishings.  Each room has a private bathroom, TV and tea and coffee making facilities.

Guests can experience fine dining at the onsite restaurant or alternatively eat at the more casual pub-style bar.  Other facilities on-site include a tennis court, archery, clay shooting, and in-room massages.  There are many nearby attractions too including The High Cross, The Bernard’s Pyramid, walking tracks in the Slieve Bloom Mountains and Leap Castle.

The Kinnitty Castle Hotel prides itself on providing comfortable and traditional Irish hospitality, and there is no doubt you and your loved ones will have a wonderful stay.

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19. Bunratty Castle Hotel, BW Signature Collection

The Bunratty Castle Hotel has recently been restored to one of the most charming hotels in the west of Ireland.  The castle is in the historic countryside of Bunratty and is just a short walk away from the popular 15th century Bunratty Castle and Folk Park.

Guest rooms at the Bunratty Castle Hotel have been designed to create that home away from home feeling.  Each of the rooms include a TV, Wi-Fi, private bathroom and tea and coffee making facilities.

The hotel is conveniently located for exploring the west of Ireland.  Places such as Galway, Connemara, the Cliffs of Moher, the Burren and the lakes of Killarney all make perfect day trips.  When it comes to activities on-site, guests can use the facilities at the Angsana Spa.  As well as various spa treatments, the day spa also features a heated indoor swimming pool, gym, hot tub and steam room.  The hotel also has two restaurants and a bar.

Whether you’re after a quiet place to relax for a few days or looking for a base to explore the number of attractions around Ireland’s west, the Bunratty Castle Hotel is a brilliant spot.

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20. Dunboyne Castle Hotel

Just 18 kilometres from Dublin, the Dunboyne Castle is nestled in 21 acres of beautiful Meath countryside.  The castle has an interesting history, originally home to the Butlers of Dunboyne, although it was destroyed during the Cromwellian invasion of Ireland as a result of the family’s refusal to convert to Protestantism.  The castle as we see it today was completed in 1794

The castle offers 145 large comfortable guest rooms, with the inclusion of two junior suites and the impressive Presidential Suite.  Rooms include tea and coffee making facilities, private bathrooms, Wi-Fi, TV and lovely views across the gardens.

Onsite the castle has a day spa where guests can indulge in several treatments.  The day spa also includes a steam room, sauna and outdoor hot tub.  The castle also provides several dining options including the Ivy Restaurant, Terrace Lounge and Sadlier Bar.

For those guests that wish to get out and explore there are many nearby sites such as Trim Castle, the Hill of Tara and Newgrange as well as the UNESCO World Heritage site of Bru na Boinne.  There is also the picturesque village of Dunboyne within walking distance which includes several bars, cafes and shops.

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