The Curragh Stud
An expansive rural cottage brimming with exotic personality and charm, this home sits comfortably alongside an enduring racehorse training enterprise in the heart of County Kildare – Home of the Thoroughbred.
Host to Ireland’s Premier Flat Racecourse, and bordering the Wicklow mountains, The Curragh is less than an hour from the centre of Dublin City.
Traditional yet idiosyncratic interiors
For a time during the 1960’s American socialite and racehorse owner Liz Whitney Tippett invited friends, including actors Burgess Meredith, Gregory Peck, John Houston, Bing Crosby and others here to the 18th century farmhouse that she had converted for the purpose.
And it is that same sense of privilege that permeates these fat, rustic, stone walls today. This is a home that is no stranger to entertaining.
A grand reception room stretches through the central part of the L shaped cottage, with a drawing room at one end where a broad carved fireplace with shoulder high mantle, is the host to a couple of generous sofas – not quite a pair – and adjacent to double doors that open onto the private gravelled entrance courtyard.
AT A GLANCE
Up to 8 guests
From €550 per night (minimum nights apply)
Two double bedrooms & One twin bedroom
All are ensuite with bath/shower
Kids Twin bedroom with WC
- Other Rooms
Kitchen with sitting room/dining room
Drawing room with Dining room
Snack kitchen with living room
Utility room, Guest WC
Attic Games room
Racing Stables, Logs & Fuel
Table Tennis table
4 Flat screen TVs,
Sky, DVD player,
Good Cell phone reception
Weekly: Saturday to Saturday or Racing Festivals
At the far end of this space, a formal dining area is dominated by a slender antique dining table of polished rough-hewn oak boards, that can easily accommodate eight.
Occasional furniture and dressers, heaving with collections of blue willow china, are all of the antique mahogany and oak variety.
Persian rugs embellish an already carpeted floor, and table lamps jostle for position on surfaces busy with books, ornaments and the cherished paraphernalia of generations.
Parallel to the drawing room, a verdant conservatory spans the length of the sunny southern elevation and looks out onto the tree lined lawn.
In common with many rural homes, the kitchen which occupies a heterogeneous space at the end of the house, is the usual entrance. Country cottage in style with Aga range, pine presses, table and ceiling, and a rugged glazed brick floor, the room morphs into a relaxing living area at one end, with open fireplace and TV so you don’t miss a race…
Extending to the garden side, a panoramic dining bay of lattice windows encloses a cosy table for six with traditional Windsor cottage chairs.
In a small utility pantry off the kitchen you will find an electric hob, fridge and kitchen sink, as well as access to a WC.
Facilities & Ameneties
• Aga range with 2 ovens and 2 hotplates
• Electric 4 ring Hob in utility room
• Fridge-freezer, in utility room plus Fridge in Snack Kitchen
• Dishwasher plus 1 in Snack Kitchen
• Microwave plus 1 in Snack Kitchen
• Electric kettle plus 1 in Snack Kitchen
• Washing machine in utility room
• Clothes Dryer in utility room
• Sizes – Two Super King-size & four single beds
• 2 Trouser presses
Tech & Entertainment
• Wi-Fi Internet
• 4 Flat-screen TVs
• Sky sports
• DVD player & Games console in living room
• Good selection of books
• Table Tennis Table
An accommodation wing with supplementary entrance lobby has a spare family bathroom, and an additional living room complete with kitchenette, that links a twin bedroom and a spacious double.
In a capricious turn, a wrought iron spiral staircase from the dining area twists past a chandelier and a dressmakers dummy – clad in mauve jockey silks – to a substantial upstairs master bedroom.
Both have generous ensuites with baths and showers. The double bedroom, full of drama and rich in fabrics pink and gold, also has a walkthrough wardrobe and separate WC.
Furnished with a Super King size four poster bed and wall to wall upholstered wardrobes, this bedroom has its own ample pine sheeted bathroom.
At the yard entrance to the accommodation wing there is an additional twin Kid’s room with WC.
The home sits on 10 acres on the edge of the Curragh Plains, with a large private garden and tree lined perimeter. The property is part of Johnny Levins’s successful racehorse training operation with a yard and 23 stables, and is surrounded by others in the same game, so this is an excellent start for your race day tips.
With the Curragh Training Grounds situated on our doorstep, the horses benefit from world class facilities, and the best possible training tailored to their needs.
The Training Grounds offer over 70 miles of immaculately-maintained grass gallops in addition to 12 miles of peat gallops and 8 all-weather tracks in total.
Thanks again for your lovely house and hospitality…
The extras you leave are a lively touch.
Sheets etc are already done, and we have cleaned up and no breakages or problems.
Thanks again, like a dream come true for us who love racing.
D. Smith – 2022
Just to tell you that we had the most lovely weekend…
…here at Curragh Stud. Perfect setting for us being here together to celebrate Michael’s 80th. We lit the fire in the sitting room in the evening and enjoyed dinner at that wonderful table in the dining room, the conservatory during the day. The kids gave Michael a drone we we had fun with that!
Thank you for being so welcoming and for leaving all the goodies, so generous.
I have left a couple of bottles of Kinnegar Scraggy Bay beer in the fridge for you, brewed in Rathmullan!
We have left the place in good shape, no catastrophes.
Oonagh, September 2019
Out & About
photo Florian Christoph
Here are some of our favourites…
- Stroll around the Japanese Gardens
- A day out at the Races
- Back a winner at Naas Races
- Lose your shirt at Punchestown
- Dine out at Harte’s
- Hit a birdie at Ireland’s oldest Golf Course
- Luxury Brand discounts in Kildare Village
- TextEnjoy luncheon at Chapter 16
- Spread your wings at Weston Airfield
- Check out the silver in Newbridge
- A Supercar experience at Mondello
- Eat healthy at Ballymore
The cottage is within easy walking distance of Kildare town, where you will find a range of supermarkets, and super restaurants.
But in the immediate locality Horses are the name of the game, whether it be racing or breeding, The Curragh Plain is the principal racehorse training region in the country – more than a quarter of all racehorses trained in Ireland are trained here.
photo Florian Christoph
The Curragh Racecourse is Ireland’s Premier Flat Racecourse, hosting all five classic races in the calendar. It is currently undergoing a state-of-the-art €70 million re-development within site. The first recorded race took place here in 1727.
The Curragh Plains consist of about 5,000 acres of open common-land grazing some 50 km south-west of Dublin City, where an army of sheep keep the grass under control and protect its unique environment.
There is a large and rare area of undisturbed wetland adjacent to The Curragh known as Pollardstown Fen. A zig-zag boardwalk has been built through the marsh which makes for a very pleasant morning jog or evening stroll.
During the World War ll an internment camp was built on the plains to house servicemen of either side who ended up on Irish soil. There were two compounds, ‘G’ camp, for Germans, and ‘B’ camp, for British and Allied servicemen. The first guests were 6 German airmen detained in Kerry.
Internees had a fairly easy time of it, eventually being allowed out for two evenings a week.
There is a movie about this period called “The Brylcreem Boys“, which is available on Netflix.
The camp is currently the main training centre for the Irish Army and home to some 2,000 military personnel.
Kildare town has a fine 13th Century Cathedral and round tower. The tower is the 2nd tallest in the country, and one of only two that can still be climbed – inside, a series of long ladders between wooden platforms eventually bring you to the top, and an awesome view.
Today Kildare town is probably best known for its Designer Outlet Retail Village, which attracts thousands of shoppers in search of luxury premium brand bargains.
The Birth of motor racing
Kildare was selected as the venue for the 1903 Gordon Bennett Trophy, the first international motor race to be held in the United Kingdom – motor racing was illegal on British public roads at the time – partly on the grounds that the straightness of the roads would be a safety benefit. As a compliment to Ireland the British team chose to race in green which henceforth was known as British racing green.
How to get there – Car advised…
By Air: Flights to Dublin, Belfast or Shannon airports.
Dublin Airport – just under an hour from the cottage
Belfast Airport – approx 2 and half hours from house.
Shannon Airport – just under 2 hours from house.
By Sea: Ferry crossings
Dublin City Port/Holyhead has a fast crossing and is about an hour from the cottage
Rosslare Harbour for Ferries to South Wales is also just under 2 hours from the house.