Ballinahinch Castle, a modest size country house with an unorthodox floor plan was built on a terraced outcrop overlooking the Owenmore River, during the first decade of the nineteenth century.
The House was greatly altered and enlarged in the 1870’s. In the early 20th century the building was further enlarged by the addition of the present top storey. It was at this period that the building was given an overall and unifying Tudorbethan style mantle comprising of hood mouldings, crenellations and a rough dashed rendered coat. All the window openings are now casement or single pane sash windows. These changes now result in an asymmetrical appearance to the building.
The north facing, five bay three storey front facade has a shallow off-centre entrance breakfront and a roof line of a crow-step gable, crenellations and dormer windows. The recessed entrance doorway has an elliptical-headed opening with roll moulding, sidelights and a tripartite fanlight. The east facing, five, three and four bay three storey elevation has a shallow breakfront flanked by bays of differing widths, which have glazed entrance screens that were
originally Wyatt style windows.
The rear south facing, eight bay three storey elevation has two shallow breakfronts, one gabled and the other parapeted – this façade was originally four bay two storey. The roofline is similar to that of the entrance front with a crow-step gable, crenellations and dormer windows. There is a single storey, flat roofed wrap-around extension to part of the east and south elevations, built in the 1990’s.
The west facing elevation overlooking the service yard has a pair of projecting chimney breasts and various small extensions. The enclosed service yard dates from 1895 and consists of a range of two storey offices, stores and staff accommodation including a lean-to corrugated roofed shelter on the southern side of the yard. On the western side there is a two storey range of additional staff accommodation, built 1990’s.
Adjoining the above are two, two and three storey four bay ranges of hotel accommodation in a weak castellated style which attempts to complement the adjoining hotel, constructed in the 1990’s.
Although the exterior has been greatly altered, the interior ground floor of the original house retains many nineteenth century features.
The Reception Room hall retains an early 19th cent. decorative ceiling band and cornice, some joinery and an early 20th cent tiled chimney piece and floor tiling. The Thomas Martin Room has an early 19th cent ceiling cornice and mahogany doors with rare brass drop handles. The slate chimney piece is mid to late 19th cent. The Hunt Room [former dining room] retains similar features as the above. The Dining Room [former drawing room] has an early 19th cent ceiling cornice and extensive decorative ceiling plasterwork as well as mahogany doors with rare brass drop handles. The Connemara marble chimney piece is mid to late 19th cent. The elliptical timber staircase is early 19th cent in style.
The Reception Room Lobby has mid 19th cent window shutters and the walls are partially oak panelled with late 19th cent. panelling.
The Bar has late 19th cent ceiling decoration, window shutters and early 20th cent. tiled chimney piece and floor tiles.
The first floor of the castle was only partially seen and appears to have been refited in late 20th cent. The second floor interior dates from c1909.
The Castle is set in picturesque and extensive grounds, which were part of the 192,000 acre Martin estate with a backdrop of mountain, lake and river. The grounds include garden terraces, a walled garden, substantial deciduous woodland and the renowned Ballinahinch
fishery. The avenue runs through the demesne, over a cut stone, single arch bridge and from gate lodge to gate lodge.