I moved to Galway from Kerry a couple of years ago. Why? For love, of course! My partner is from very near the Clare/Galway border and we always said we wanted to settle down close to his parents. So when it came to choosing a place to live, Loughrea made a lot of sense - it's close to the motorway, only 30 minutes from Galway city and is in a stunning setting by the lake. I was thrilled to meet with the great management and staff of the Loughrea Hotel last year and form a great partnership with them, being named one of their preferred suppliers for wedding planning and stationery as well as regularly participating in their wedding events as an exhibitor and guest speaker. The hotel has undergone an incredible makeover in the last few months, and is now a super-stylish location for a wedding. The location is ideal with a catchment area of Galway, Clare, Roscommon and Westmeath, and the hotel itself has an amazing spa which I love treating myself to every so often. They added in a fantastic feature last summer - a rooftop garden! When the weather is good, it's like sitting on a rooftop in the Mediterranean, sipping cocktails with soft music and a light breeze rustling through the leaves, and very thoughtful blankets to keep you warm when the sun goes down. This was a great addition for those planning a civil or humanist ceremony for their wedding, providing the amazing backdrop of Loughrea lake for you and your guests. The ballroom, the De Dannan suite, also underwent a makeover last year, and is now the perfect setting for your wedding reception with opulent purple, cream and gold accents and glittering chandeliers. It has a full bar and huge dance floor, and is also really versatile if you want to add extra decor items. Before you and your guests enter the ballroom, you will be met by the Piano Lounge which is ideal for your cocktail reception. Again, it has a bar facility, has access to the outdoor terrace and best of all - it's private. Many hotels hold the drinks reception in the lobby - not ideal when there are non-wedding guests milling in and out. The hotel has launched brand new wedding packages starting from only €44.00 per person - that's all inclusive, which means you'll get a sumptuous five course meal, wine, drinks reception with piano entertainment, decor, bridal suite and two free rooms and finger food for the afters! Being a regular visitor to the bar in the Loughrea Hotel, I can say with all certainty that the food is excellent (make sure you try the chicken wings!). They'll also look after the little ones, with special kids menus and a room just off the Piano Lounge that can be used for kids' entertainment or movies while you relax and enjoy your meal. You can contact the Loughrea Hotel & Spa now on 091 880080 or visit www.loughreahotelandspa.com - you can also check out their wedding packages here!