History of the House

The original house was built around 1760’s and was part of the Knox family estates. The house was built in typical Georgian style with a central door and rooms on either side.

Bishop Knox of Derry and Raphoe built the house as a bathing place when he left the priory in Rathmullan to move to Prehen in Derry. Later in the 18oo’s it became the country residence of the Batt family who were linen brokers and founders of the Belfast bank, now the Northern and Northern Irish Bank. The Batt family townhouse in Belfast is now Purdysburn Hospital.

Thomas Batt’s substantial renovations in 1870 doubled the house in size. The three bay windows were added and the grounds extensively planted. The Batt family resided here until the 1940’s. After the war the Holiday Fellowship used the house as a centre for walking holidays until the train service to Buncrana ceased.

Bob and Robin Wheeler bought the house in 1962. After extensive work transforming the dormitories back into the original bedrooms they opened the house as a 22 bedroom hotel. The original pavilion dining room designed by the late Dr Liam Mc Cormick was built in 1969 with a swimming pool and a new bedroom wing added in the 1990’s. In 2004, the new regency bedroom wing was added along with The Gallery Room and the Cook & Gardener restaurant was renovated and redesigned.

Mark and Mary are now the second generation to run the house. With a young family they split their time between the hotel and family commitments. They are ably assisted by Emily who looks after front office along with Elaine & Lorna in reception Eilis, & Patrick the hosts in the restaurant and Michéal in the kitchen.   

2012 saw us celebrating 50 years of hospitality.