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  • A Time To Reflect- Adare Manor

    Adare Manor is a 19th century five star hotel located on the banks of the River Maigue in County Limerick. It takes its name from the nearby village of Adare which is renowned for its thatched roof cottages. The estate boasts 840 acres of stunning gardens which also includes a championship golf course that will host the Ryder Cup in 2026. 

    I have performed for many weddings and events at the castle hotel since it reopened after its refurbishment in the latter part of 2017. However in December 2019 I regularly entertained the guests during the seasonal period. On arrival, guests were greeted by the sound of the harp which filled the grand reception room. Its high ceilings made it an ideal acoustic setting for the harp. Many guests opted for a pre-dinner drink by the open fire to enjoy a selection of traditional Irish airs and dance music mixed with some Christmas favourites along with some light classical and popular pieces. It is very fitting that the elaborately decorative fireplace is adorned with an ornate harp at its centre. I was always delighted to chat with and receive feedback from the hotel guests who were eager to learn about the history of the instrument and to know more about the music I was playing.

    I had the pleasure of meeting Kate Connelly, a classically trained soprano who celebrated her wedding anniversary at the hotel (check out her Facebook page Courtesy of Kate you can check out a short clip of me playing an O’Carolan favourite Shee Beag Shee Mór .

    Another memorable event in which I had the privilege to perform was the arrival music for the University of Limerick President’s Gala Dinner on Friday May 25th 2019. Distinguished guests in full black tie glamour descended the staircase. I was strategically placed at its foot to entertain guests as they proceeded to the grand ballroom which would play host to the drinks reception that night. 

    This splendid space has also catered for many wedding receptions where newly-wed couples have celebrated with their guests. I have also seen this versatile space transformed for corporate dinners events. 

    This year I was due to perform for a special afternoon tea experience in March to celebrate Mother’s day. However this was cancelled due to the current global circumstances that we are all experiencing. Despite this disappointment I have had the Adare Manor afternoon tea experience as a guest and it is a real treat. The stunning surrounds of the Gallery Room played host to proceedings. The arched ceilings, stained glass and wooden carvings are all features that make this room distinct and memorable. I was impressed by the extensive choice of teas and coffee available and I also enjoyed a glass of champagne. 

    The food itself was very dainty and the miniature pastries augmented the experience. Do not be fooled, you will not leave hungry as the sandwiches plate is replenished. Specific dietary requirements were also catered for, as one should expect of such an acclaimed eatery. Anything we could not finish was boxed up in these tastefully and carefully designed carrier bags that fit the theme of the room.

    The evening was completed with a tour of the newly refurbished manor house. I cannot adequately express how attentive the staff were. They were friendly and accommodating and could not do enough for us. 

    This is an experience I can truly recommend. To find out more about Adare Manor v