Swiss Cottage

Nestled deep in the County Tipperary countryside, on the western banks of the River Suir and just a little south of the Cahir Park Golf Club, Swiss Cottage is a rural house in every respect. Ireland has ancient stonemasonry in abundance, but it is rare to find such an excellently preserved example of a 19th century cottage as this one in Cahir.

Built in 1810, Swiss Cottage was once a guesthouse for visitors to the Cahir Estate. It is believed to be a creation of the celebrated 19th century architect, John Nash. Complete with a delicate thatched roof and botanically inspired wooden designs, the exterior of the cottage is curvaceous and rustic. It is also somewhat ahead of its time, for while it is traditional in its design, it has a bucolic and almost art nouveau elegance to it.

The sylvan theme continues inside, with a splendid spiral wooden staircase that begs to be touched, and delicately decorated rooms. This includes some of the first ever in-situ examples of Parisian Dufour wallpaper. Despite having been left to nature for many years, Swiss Cottage was rescued from ruin in 1985 and renovated. It has been a popular tourist attraction since it was reopened as a museum in 1989.

Open every year from April to September, the cottage is accessible only by guided tour. However, the fee is nominal and it is worth every penny to be transported back in time by this fascinating and unusual piece of County Tipperary heritage.

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