It was a frosty evening last week when we turned into the Keadeen's wonderfully Christmasy avenue and quickly found a parking spot.
Once inside the lobby, we spied the impressive festive decorations and felt immediately enveloped in the warmth and hospitality of the family-owned property.
An 18-month renovation worth €3m was recently completed at the four-star hotel.
The latest addition to the famous hotel is ‘The Atrium Lounge & Cocktail Bar’, a contemporary drawing room in the heart of the hotel.
This elegant lounge enjoys light streaming in from both sides of the room through sliding glass doors and a pyramid shaped glass ceiling.
A 360-degree fireplace forms an impressive centrepiece in the lavish new space.
When it was time for dinner, we were ushered into the Saddler's Bar & Bistro which was bustling with customers and manager Pauline Scully showed us to a candle-lit table at a the window - beside a cosy radiator.
The glow of soft lighting and the buzz of conversation created a wonderful ambience.
I chose the Baked Puff Pastry Parcel with Chicken and Mushroom which was served with a white wine sauce.
This was scrumptious to the very last forkful and ideal to warm you up on a winter's evening.
My dining companion opted for the Slow Roasted Crispy Silverhill Duck Leg Confit which was served on Braised Sweet Red Cabbage with Seville Orange and Sweet Soy Glaze.
This dish was beautifully presented and was vivid with colours - and bursting with flavour.
Head Chef Kevin Curran (above) - and his team - impressed all evening with his culinary creations.
And the friendly and efficient waiting staff also excelled with their swift service.
For the Main Course, I chose the Pan Fried Supreme of Irish Chicken which was served a Velvet Sauce of Marinated Wild Mushrooms, Button Onions and Chorizo Garnish with Soft Herbs.
This was a feast for the taste buds and tasted as fresh as if the chicken roamed the fields at the back of the hotel!
My companion selected the Flash-Fried Sea Trout Fillet which was Marinated with Indonesian Sweet Soy, Ginger, Garlic, Honey and Lime and served with Asian Mixed Leaves, Chili and Herbs.
Again, this dish was a delight for the senses and is a popular favourite among regular diners.
New potatoes and seasonal vegetables provide free of charge complemented the table.
For dessert, we both chose to share the Warm Berry & Apple Crumble with Old English Custard was an scrumptiously indulgent treat and was delicately flavoured throughout.
Other tempting options included the delicious Hazlenut & Chocolae Genoise Sponge Gateauz with Chocolate Frosting and Berry Crush.
At around this time, we heard the sound of a singer covering Dusty Springfield numbers drifting in from the The Atrium Lounge & Cocktail Bar
The Cocktail Bar is open on Friday and Saturday evenings and cocktail maker Daniel Hensey will create old favourites or fix you something special to order.
For a relaxing dining experience in south Kildare, and with free and easy parking, you can’t do better than the Keadeen.
For more details on Keadeen Hotel or make a reservation for dinner or accommodation see www.keadeenhotel.ie or call 00353 (0) 45 431666
About Keadeen Hotel
Keadeen Hotel is a 71-bedroom, 4-star hotel that has been in business since 1970.
It was originally opened by Joe and Rose O’Loughlin, both graduates of Shannon College of Hotel Management where they met.
The hotel is now being run by the second generation of O’Loughlins, Kate, Anna and Joseph O’Loughlin.
The most eye-catching part of The Keadeen Hotel is the eight-acre manicured gardens which contain a huge array of flowers gathered from all over the world and from every corner of Ireland.
The Keadeen Hotel is very well known for weddings and conferences and can cater for both large and small events, conferences and weddings in an elegant manner.
The Ballroom can host up to 350 people and features crystal chandeliers and colour mood lighting.
The stunning setting of the Garden Room offers guests a view of the breath-taking gardens all year round and can cater for up to 110 people.
The hotel has recently undergone an extensive refurbishment in 2016 and 2017 which has seen €3 million invested in the property to improve the facilities.
The Atrium Lounge & Cocktail Bar leads the way to the Bay Leaf Restaurant, the fine dining restaurant in the hotel.
The hotel also includes a health club, gym, swimming pool and Beauty Rooms and is a popular destination for both business and leisure guests due do its location, classic Irish hospitality and excellent food.
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