Photo by Katy Belcher

Bridal Party & Guests

From the glamorous to the adventurous: A hen for every bride's style

Being asked to be bridesmaid comes with big responsibilities - not least is the hen party! Serial bridesmaid Deirdre O’Brien rounds up some fabulous hen party ideas for brides of all tastes

Organising a hen party for someone dear to you is a wonderful way of giving the gift of a night that represents so many facets of the friendship you share and giving her a night that she’ll never forget.

The perfect hen is one which is designed to suit the taste of the bride specifically but should also be fun and accessible to the other members of the hen party.

Whether the bride loves the idea of a completely traditional hen or prefers a more intimate affair, there are so many options ahead of you to tailor-make the perfect hen night.

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The Luxury Hen

The luxury hen is a great choice for those who aren’t too enthused by the idea of a typical hen night but need some pampering. The Marker Hotel, Dublin is an exquisite modern luxury hotel with everything a bridal party could possibly need (if luxury accommodation, delicious food, tip top service, sumptuous spa facilities sound appealing!)

The luxury theme can be continued throughout the city too and The Merrion Hotel’s Art Afternoon Tea (pictured) couldn’t be a better way to treat the bride to a relaxing afternoon with dedicated silver service in opulent environs.

For pre-dinner cocktails The Vintage Cocktail Club under The Clarence Hotel on Dublin's quays has a cosy, speakeasy style atmosphere that feels that little bit removed from the hubbub of the city.

For dinner Coppinger Row is a cut above the rest with a buzzy atmosphere, good food and a gorgeous range of cocktails.

Finally, House on Leeson Street is the ideal locale to end the night. Their table service and creative cocktail menu should keep the party together as you dance the night away.

Three more like it: The Shelbourne Hotel, Dublin; The Heritage Hotel and Spa, Portlaoise; G Hotel, Galway

The All-In Hen’s Hen

Many brides love the idea of a traditional hen party, jam-packed with all the trimmings. The bonus of organising a party like this is that a lot of the work is already done by the venues for you. Galway’s gorgeous boutique House Hotel provides an ideal location for the traditional, all-in hen. Hotels that offer hen packages include almost everything you could need like B&B, group dinner, as well as arrangements with other venues in the city so there’s no stressful planning. There’s a lot to be said for having a hen pre-organised and it’s by far the best value and easiest of all the options out there, giving you and the party more time for fun.

Three more like it: The Strand Hotel, Limerick; The Gibson Hotel, Dublin; The Springhill Court Hotel, Kilkenny

The Outdoorsy Adventure Hen

For a mix of breathtaking landscape, a host of organised outdoor activities on your doorstep and one of the finest spas in the country, Inchydoney Island Lodge & Spa, Co Cork ticks all the boxes for the more outdoorsy bride. Along with luxurious surroundings, the friendliest hotel staff, amazing food, and plenty more in between, Inchydoney works well on so many levels to provide your adventure-loving bride something to appeal to every aspect of her hen party needs.

With a hotel that looks directly over the ocean it makes for a dream destination for a bride that likes some adventure, with everything from surfing, kayaking, golf, walking, cycling to whale watching on offer. The perfect mix of adventure, luxury, and lots of fun.

Three more like itDelphi Resort Hotel and Spa, Galway; Skellig Hotel and Peninsula Spa, Co. Kerry; Glamping at Teapot Lane, Luxury Camp, Co. Leitrim.

The Eclectic Hen

It’s hard to find a hotel in Ireland that better suits a bride with more creative or eclectic tastes than the Dean Hotel in Dublin. Each room of this boutique hotel features decor you won’t find anywhere else.

The two-bedroom penthouse is ideal for a hen party and has everything from turntables and a foosball machine to Netflix. Dublin offers so many amazing options for a hen like this. thehencollection.com allows you to buy individual activities, such as an adrenaline-pumping group lesson in the daring trend of Aerial Skills. Imagine the fun making shapes in suspended aerial hoops together!

Café En Seine offers group Gin Tasting Classes for hen parties with Gin It Yourself. For dinner Dylan McGrath’s Fade Street Social offers top-notch meals, cool clientele, and an amazing rooftop cocktail bar. Finally, to dance the night away with good music and a great atmosphere, The Vintage Cocktail Club is the ideal spot to end the night’s fun.

Three more like it: No.1 Perry Square, Limerick; The Twelve Hotel, Barna, Galway; The Fitzwilliam Hotel, Dublin

*This article first appeared as part of Irish Brides, now THEVOW Magazine | Issue 1 of THEVOW Magazine is on shelves now - find out more