Originally a small Georgian house built in the late 18th century, Farmleigh was purchased by Edward Cecil Guinness (1847-1927) on his marriage to his cousin, Adelaide Guinness in 1873. A great-grandson of Arthur Guinness, founder of the eponymous brewery, Edward Cecil became the first Earl of Iveagh in 1919.
Farmleigh, situated to the north-west of Dublin's Phoenix Park, was purchased from the Guinness family by the Irish Government in 1999. The house has been carefully refurbished by the Office of Public Works as the premier accommodation for visiting dignitaries and guests of the nation, for high level Government meetings, and for public enjoyment.
It covers an area of 78 acres and contains many beautiful features including the Main House, which is a fine example of Georgian-Victorian architecture, the Sunken Garden, the Walled Garden, the famous Clock Tower and the Lake and The Benjamin Iveagh Library.
The Benjamin Iveagh Library was amassed during the lifetime of the 3rd Earl of Iveagh, Benjamin Guinness (1937-1992). He was a very keen bibliophile and an astute collector of rare books, manuscripts and bindings. The collection amounts to over 5000 items and includes many highly collectable Irish books and manuscripts. The library holds some of the finest examples of Irish bookbinding from the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries. The collection was donated to Marsh’s Library by the Guinness family.
Public tours are available for free Monday - Sunday (and Bank Holidays) from 10am - 6pm, provided the House is available and not in use by the Government as accommodation for visiting dignitaries.
On occasions, Farmleigh House may be closed for State Purposes. Check website for updates.
Download Visit Dublin’s Dublin on a Budget Guide