Friday, February 26, 2010

Audi Centre

Pictured at the opening of the new Audi Centre: 1. Kathryn Thomas & Rob Kearney; 2. Laurna McLoughlin & Michael Hynes; 3. Dermot Bannon & Sharon Anderson. (Pix. Fennells)

Audi Ireland hosted an exclusive launch of their new flagship Irish Retail Centre at the magnificently redeveloped building on Pembroke Road in Ballsbridge, Dublin 4.

Over 150 guests were treated to a private performance from Global Audi ambassador and world famous Chinese pianist Lang Lang in an event hosted by Audi Ireland Director Fintan Knight.

Audi ambassadors Kathryn Thomas and Rob Kearney were on hand to show their support along with a distinguished guest list which included businessman Niall O’Farrell, the German Ambassador to Ireland H.E. Busso von Alvensleben and Jayne O’Keeffe of Arnotts.

Along with Lang Lang’s performance Audi treated guests to a look at the new Audi A8 and R8 V10 Spyder among an array of stunning vintage and modern Audi cars. The new Audi Centre marks the start of a significant investment by Audi in Ireland over the coming years.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Meteor Ireland Music Awards

At the Meteor Awards: 1. Laura Whitmore; 2. Jenny Buckley; 3. Claudine Palmer.

At the Meteor Awards: 1. Amanda Byram; 2. Dizzie Rascal; 3. Tara O’Leary. (Pix. Michael Chester)

The Meteor Ireland Music Awards 2010 took place at the RDS Dublin on Friday and the orange carpet was awash with glam and bling.

Performing on the night to celebrate the ten year anniversary was the best in music, both home grown and international including; Westlife, Snow Patrol, The Script, Florence and the Machine, Paulo Nutini, The Coronas and Pixie Lott.

The star-studded music spectacular was presented by international TV presenter Amanda Byram. Among the award winners were Brian Kennedy (Lifetime), Lord Henry Mountcharles (Industry Achievement), Christy Moore (Best Male) and Wallis Bird (Best Female). Westlife picked up Best Pop Act for the tenth year running.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Niall McCrudden

(Pic. Brian McEvoy)

It is with sadness that I pay tribute to the late Niall McCrudden. No stranger to this diary, Niall was a popular and very well liked fixture on the social scene whose death came as a terrible shock to many.

Niall was an intelligent man, an Optometrist by profession, and a successful businessman. Actually he was more of an entrepreneur; after he sold his business, Insight Opticians, he was always looking at new investment opportunities and ideas. Putting his success to good use was another of his trademarks as he was a great supporter of charity, not only financially but (more importantly) with his time too.

Niall was a sharp dresser and took great pride in his appearance, always looking his best. I remember remarking once that he must take as long as a woman to get ready and he replied that he probably did, and that’s why he had all the women after him!

At a party he was such a friendly face in a crowd and always had a good word for everyone. With a cheeky sense of humour he was excellent company - outgoing and gregarious. More so than many he had an insatiable appetite for the good times; a generous host, his home was the scene of many a great evening – the garden alone would put any night club to shame with it’s hot tub, sound system and full bar!

Apart from all that however Niall McCrudden was a good, kind, decent man. For all his bravado and showbiz appearance he was actually one of the most genuine people I’ve ever met and will be sadly missed by anyone who had the pleasure of knowing him.

Friday, February 19, 2010


At the premiere of Ondine: 1. Alicja Bachleda & Colin Farrell; 2. Jade Yourell; 3. Lee Bradshaw.
(Pix. Brian McEvoy / Patrick O'Leary)

The Jameson Dublin International Film Festival kicked off last night with the European premiere of Neil Jordan’s new film, Ondine.

Irish star Colin Farrell got a hero’s welcome as fans turned up in their droves to catch a glimpse of the A-lister who signed autographs and posed for photos as he strolled the red carpet and happily shared the spotlight with stunning co-star Alicja Bachleda and Alison Barry along with director and friend, Neil Jordan.

Before the screening Colin spoke fondly of his memories of the late Michael Dywer to whom this years film festival is dedicated to and also his recollection of viewing his first ever movie (ET) in the Savoy Cinema.

Colin was joined on the red carpet by his mother Rita, sisters Catherine and Claudine and brother Eamon along with husband, artist Steven Mannion.

Other stars who braved the cold weather at last night’s gala in the Savoy Cinema, was veteran actor Brendan Gleeson, actress Jade Yourell, movie buff and Xpose presenter Lisa Cannon along with Morah Ryan and singer Lee Bradshaw who has reached the final of this year’s Eurosong and hopes to represent Ireland at the Eurovision.

The festival is running until the 28th February. Tickets available from

Thursday, February 18, 2010

M&S Spring / Summer

At the M&S SS10 show: 1. Alan Hughes & Anna Daly; 2. Sandra Byrne; 3. Elaine Murray & Dee Breen. (Pix. Kieran Harnett)

The Marks & Spencer Spring/Summer fashion show took place at the Rooftop Restaurant, Grafton Street, Dublin this week. Over 90 guests enjoyed a three course supper including mini fish pies, piri piri chicken and a range of delicious desserts including pink champagne jelly and of course, the infamous M&S cupcakes.

The catwalk show delivered highlights from Limited, Autograph, Indigo, Portfolio and per una collections which saw a return to a softer, romantic look with relaxed silhouettes and chalky pastels mixed with bold, bright highlights. Fashion stories for spring through to summer include Urban Safari, Sports Luxe, Cruise and Black & White Modernist.

Jenny Mulholland and Carmel Breheny from M&S welcomed guests including TV3’s Sean Munsanje, Alan Hughes, Sinead Desmond, Anna Daly and Sybil Mulcahy; and RTE fashionistas Darren Kennedy, Sandra Byrne and Janice Butler. “The Saturday Night Show” presenter Brendan O’Connor also attended with his colleagues Barry Egan and Mary O’Sullivan.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Valentine's Day

At Valentine’s Day premiere: 1. Suzanne Cairns & Aislinn O’Toole; 2. Bryan Healy & Declan Leavy; 3. Niamh Crowley & Thomas Crosse. (Pix. Brian McEvoy)

Love was certainly in the air at the Irish premier of the new movie Valentine’s Day last week. Guests arriving on the red carpet were greeted by a sea of beautiful flowers which added to the romantic atmosphere.

The movie stars a huge roll call of A-listers including Jessica Alba, Bradley Cooper, Kathy Bates, Jessica Biel, Jamie Foxx, Ashton Kutcher, Queen Latifah, Shirley MacLaine and Julia Roberts.

The screening was introduced by our own FM104 presenter Niamh Crowley and among the guests were Karen Koster, model Nadia Forde and stylist Cathy O’Connor.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Brian cooks up a storm

At the Anglers Rest: 1. Louise Loughman & Stephen Byrne; 2. Brian Ormond & Pippa O’Connor; 3. Larry & Katherine Bass. (Pix. Brian McEvoy)

After a hugely successful event with Leigh Arnold cooking in the Angler’s Rest last year ‘Look Who’s in the Kitchen’ returned with RTE presenter and one half of Ireland’s most glamorous couples – Brian Ormond.

Brian proposed to girlfriend of 2 years Pippa O’Connor over New Year and he put their culinary skills to the test with the help of head chef Bob Azhar in Chapelizod’s Angler’s Rest.

Brian and Bob put their chef’s caps on to come up with a selection of dishes to suit everyone’s palette. However Brian kept close to home serving his Grannies colcannon recipe with fillet steak - a favourite with all his golfing buddies.

The evening was a huge success (more celeb events are planned for the future) and all proceeds were in aid of Zamda – Irish Zambian Aid Project.

Tuesday, February 09, 2010

Hennessy Gold Cup

At the Hennessy Gold Cup: 1. Caroline Sleiman & Aisling Kilduff; 2. Glenda Gilson; 3. Anne Marie McManus & Vivienne Leavy. (Pix. Pat O’Leary)

The 20th running of the Hennessy Gold Cup took place at Leopardstown Racecourse on Sunday and as always welcomed its characteristically eclectic variety of guests, bringing people together from the worlds of music and film, sport, fashion and the arts.

Fashion stakes were high as ladies donned their most glamorous outfits in the hope of winning the Best Dressed Competition in association with The Design Centre.

The event was judged this year by a panel including the aforementioned Philip Treacy, Ashling Kilduff of The Design Centre; Caroline Sleiman of Moet Hennessy and Annmarie O’Connor, fashion blogger and journalist.

The winning lady on the day was none other than the current Rose of Tralee Charmaine Kenny who won a prize worth €4,000.

Those in attendance included International milliner and fashion designer Philip Treacy; acclaimed Irish film director Neil Jordan, Caroline Downey, Amy Huberman and rugby star fiancĂ© Brian O’Driscoll and Kathy Gilfillan.

Some of the other stylish racegoers included Hon. Desmond and Penny Guinness, singer Maria Tecce and Leigh Arnold.

Friday, February 05, 2010


At Tribe: 1. Megan Dowling & Louise Smith; 2. Abby Ross & Kate Finnegan; 3. Mikaela Kenny & Maebh McCracken. (Pix. Brian McEvoy)

Tribe is a new state of the art venue in Stillorgan which opened recently. It has not one but two nightclubs inside its structure.

The main club has elements from clubs all over the world and has its own integrated smoking terrace, plenty of plush seating booths and two 15 meter glass fronted bars imported from Holland. The second venue is the stand alone second room known as the "Live Lounge".

The opening weekend included performances by tribal drummers, Lazer robots, walking and talking heads, angle grinder shows, sushi girls and body painted divas and loads more.

The style of the club is chic and contemporary with an emphasis on comfort and elegance. Tribe NC promises to be fresh, new, to bring something different, something that’s been missing, back to SoCoDu. A quality venue with quality people all partying together as one big TRIBE.

Wednesday, February 03, 2010


At the INVICTUS premiere: 1. Odette & John Rocha; 2. Joyce Matemba & Sean Munsanje; 3. Sarah & Ken Doherty. (Pix. Brian McEvoy)

The Irish premiere of INVICTUS was held in the Savoy this week and hosted in Association with Sport Against Racism Ireland (SARI). The guests arrived to a traditional African dance performance by the ‘Afro – Irish Kidios Group’.

In attendance were Gerry Ryan and Melanie Verwoerd, John and Odette Rocha, Ken Doherty and wife Sarah, manager of Tyrone team Mickey Harte, Sean Munsanje, models Joyce Matemba and Kerri Ingram. Also present were Tom Kitt TD, Marina Guinness, Senator David Norris and rugby player Paul Wallace who was accompanied by his wife Barbara.

INVICTUS, directed by four time Oscar winner Clint Eastwood, tells the inspiring true story of Nelson Mandela, then South Africa’s newly elected president uniting the post-apartheid nation as they prepare to host the 1995 World Cup.

The Springboks national Rugby team become both champions and a galvanizing force of hope, as Mandela - an extraordinary performance by Morgan Freeman, together with Springboks captain Francois Pienaar- played by Matt Damon, unite South Africans through the universal language of sport.