I recently had the pleasure of staying for my 7th year running with Pauline & Gerry, the dynamic duo behind Ballyvaughan's best B&B. I don't say this lightly - I have stayed in the
other top rated B&Bs - they come nowhere close to the Lodge for a myriad of reasons.
Firstly, this is the most central and professionally run establishment in town complete with a fabulous breakfast on par with the fayre at nearby Gregans Castle.
Secondly; expect a full buffet breakfast; berries, yoghurt, seasonal fresh fruit (stewed rhubarb last week), fresh (properly fresh; not tinned) pineapple, cereals, musesli (granola)...then followed by a cooked breakfast of your choice (full irish, eggs any style, smoked salmon, pancakes etc.). Beautiful home made brown breads. They really excel with their breakfasts...they even have Lapsong Souchong - seriously top drawer.
The Lodge is a short walk from anywhere in town so you don't have to worry about driving if you try the whiskeys in the nearby O'Lochlain's whiskey bar (of which there are many - you might even be introduced to Margaret by Gerry or Pauline if you see them there listening to the trad music). Park your car (lots of parking in their private lot) and don't think about the car again until you check out.
Thirdly; the hospitality shown by Gerry and Pauline is not the oft-pedalled twee 'shamrocks and shenanigans' fake enthusiasm one will often find in rural Irish B&Bs. Rather the sophistication, worldliness and charm of this pair of warm characters is evident from the moment you check in and is the reason why many of their customers return year after year. They are full of helpful up to date advice (eg. "don't forget your padded bike shorts" I heard yelled from the kitchen one morning) which is invaluable during these times of recession when businesses are closing and services curtailed.
Bathrooms are equipped with powerful showers and are maintained to a high standard. The beds are very comfortable with good quality crisp white sheets. Cleanliness is superb. This is 4 star hotel quality here. Even the flat screen tv (not that you'd want to stay in and watch TV in this area - theres so much to do) is brand new. We were offered the use of their bikes; a new addition to the facilities and internet connection is also good.
Highly recommended. Do not pass up on the opportunity to stay with Gerry & Pauline. Consider staying more than just a night - it's never enough. You could easily spent at least 3 days here and just scratch the surface.
And don't forget your bike shorts.