Photographer Paul Sherwood paul@sherwood.ie; 087 230 9096 www.sherwood.ie

We’ve all dreamed of a Christmas dinner that doesn’t involve slaving over a hot stove or mountains of washing up – so this year why not check in and relax in festive luxury?

There are a variety of seasonal specials on offer which mean you don’t have to break the bank and you won’t have to drive for hours to reach your destination either.

The holiday season at The Shelbourne is when the hotel looks at its very best, full of glitter and magic, where centuries of Dubliners meet to celebrate Christmas and where fun, style and delicious food and festive drinks are the order of the day.

Celebrate the ringing out of the old and in of the new in the magnificent Saddle Room Restaurant.

Then move to the glamour and the buzz of No. 27 Bar & Lounge to ring in the New Year.

Including one night’s accommodation in one of The Shelbourne’s gorgeous Deluxe rooms, and traditional Irish breakfast on New Year’s Day, New Year’s packages at The Shelbourne cost from €295 per person sharing per night, with upgrades to Park View rooms from €100 (01 6634500).

If you want to prolong that festive feeling with a post-Christmas break it’s a wonderful life at Inchydoney Island Lodge & Spa this ‘Twixmas’.

Mulled wine & mince pies, fun board games by the fire, your favourite classic Christmas movies, a relaxing Festive back massage in The Island Spa, beach walks and more will ensure that the joy and magic of Christmas lingers well into the New Year.

Beach walks
A two-night stay including breakfast, spa treatment and all the festive trimmings – with bracing beach walks on your doorstep – costs from €310 per person sharing (www.inchydoneyisland.com).

For a bit of festive fizz and the best of city centre shopping why not hole up at Trinity City Hotel.

They say good things come in threes and that’s certainly true here. Urban, vibrant and smart it’s the perfect base for shopping, lunch and a retail blitz with an extra 10% at the Kilkenny store exclusive to guests.

The shop and drop package includes overnight accommodation for two with breakfast the following morning, a glass of Prosecco on arrival and 10% off at in store at Kilkenny on Nassau Street from €175 per room per night (trinitycityhotel.com).

If it’s spectacular surroundings you’re after Fota Island Resort’s Christmas experience takes some beating.

The gorgeous woodlands are transformed into a winter wonderland and family packages ensure there’s a bit of yuletide cheer for young and old alike.

Prices range from €250 for an overnight stay with B&B for two adults and one child sharing a classic king hotel room to €595 for two nights in one of Fota Island Resort’s self-catering lodges (www.fotaisland.ie).

Alternatively, treat yourself to a decadent two-night break on your doorstep at the stylish four-star Brooks Hotel on Drury Street.

Arrive on Christmas Eve to bubbly and festive canapes by the fire and on Christmas morning, after unwrapping your personally selected gift, enjoy a full Irish either in your room or in the dining room.

Five-course Christmas lunch is served at 1pm and afterwards relax in the Jasmine Bar to the sound of resident pianist.

This exquisite package is priced from €300 per night (01 670 4000 or visit www.brookshotel.ie).

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