Tourist Information Dublin

Áras an Uachtaráin, Ireland

Áras an Uachtaráin ("The House of the President" in English) is the official residence of the president of the Republic of Ireland and located in the Phoenix Park.

The original house was designed by amateur architect, Nathaniel Clements in the mid eighteenth century. It was bought by the administration of the British Lord Lieutenant of Ireland to become his summer residence in the 1780s. The house in the park later became the Viceregal Lodge, the "out of season" residence of the Lord Lieutenant (also known as the Viceroy), where he lived for most of the year from the 1820s onwards.

In 1882, the grounds became the location for an infamous murder. The Chief Secretary for Ireland (a British Cabinet minister), Lord Frederick Cavendish, and the Undersecretary, T.H. Burke, were fatally stabbed with surgical knives while walking back to the residence from Dublin Castle.

In 1911, the house was extended for the visit of King George V and Queen Mary. With the creation of the Irish Free State in 1922, the office of Lord Lieutenant was abolished. The house remained the residence of the Governor-General of the Irish Free State until 1932, it then remained empty for some years. Shortly after the office of President of Ireland was created in 1937, the first President, Douglas Hyde lived there. This was intended as a temporary measure while plans were made to build a new presidential palace on the grounds. The outbreak of World War II saved the building, renamed Áras an Uachtaráin, as plans for its demolition and the design of a new residence were put on hold. By 1945 it had become too closely identified with the presidency of Ireland to be demolished, though its poor condition meant that extensive demolition and rebuilding of parts of the building were necessary, notably the kitchens, servants' quarters and chapel. Since then, further restoration work has been carried out from time to time.

Though Áras an Uachtaráin is possibly not as palatial as many other European royal and presidential palaces, with only a handful of state rooms (the state drawing room, large and small dining rooms, the President's Office and Library, a large ballroom and a presidential corridor lined with the busts of past presidents, and some fine eighteenth and nineteenth century bedrooms above, all in the main building), it is a relatively comfortable state residence.

All Taoisigh (Irish Prime Ministers)as well as Government Ministers receive their seal of office from the President at Áras an Uachtaráin as do Judges, the Attorney General, the Comptroller and Auditor General, and senior commissioned officers of the Defence Forces.

Áras an Uachtaráin also houses the headquarters of the Garda Mounted Unit.

Opening Times

Áras an Uachtaráin is open Saturdays only.

Guided Tours
10.15 - 15:30

Tour of gardens included from June to September, weather permitting.

Closed: 24-26 December.

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Ticket Prices

Free admission tickets are issued at the Phoenix Park Visitor Centre, Ashtown Castle on the day. Group and/or advance booking is not possible.

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Disabled Facilities

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More Information

Telephone: 00 353 (0) 1 617 1000
Email: phoenixparkvisitorcentre@opw.ie

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Location Map

Find out how to get to Áras an Uachtaráin with directions and maps from Google.
Phoenix Park,
Dublin,
Ireland

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