It you've got to organise a hen night, fear not - there are plenty of options from murder mystery evenings to farm bootcamps.
So your best friend is getting married and has appointed you chief bridesmaid. Congratulations. It’s now officially your job to listen to the endless details, wear the unflattering dress and, worst of all, organise the hen night.
A poison chalice if ever there was one – what if nobody comes? What if everybody comes but nobody enjoys themselves? What if no one wants to totter round Temple Bar in an L-plate all night?
Relax. The good news is that, after years of telling us they didn’t want noisy hen dos lowering the tone, Ireland’s hoteliers are falling over their stilettos trying to attract them. What’s more, there are now loads of hen-oriented activities that you can combine a hotel stay with, to ensure everybody has a good time.
At the White Lady Hotel stagandhenweekends.ie in Kinsale, they gave one of their store rooms a makeover and devoted it to hen parties. Now known as The Powder Room, it’s a suitably girly space which hens can use as base camp for a range of different activity packages.
Hens often, for example, use it to book a make-up class, before heading into the nightclub next door where management reserve the VIP section for the group.
Another option is a Murder Mystery Ireland stagandhenweekends.ie hen event. Apparently, dead bodies are a guaranteed way to break the ice between friends and future family, no matter how frosty the initial relations.
Based in Mayo, the MMI team operates nationwide and provides costumes to ensure everyone is safely in character before the backstabbing starts, with a facilitator laid on to ensure any blood on the carpet is fake.
For something a little more sedate, how about a pottery session? With marriage on the way, it’s only a matter of time before plates get thrown, so start by throwing them on a potter’s wheel.
At The Pottery Experience stagandhenweekends.ie in Portmarnock, Co Dublin, hens produce personalised tableware for the bride and groom, which makes for a nice memento.
Everyone gets to either decorate a breakfast or dinner set, or design and decorate a commemorative platter. Bring your own food and drink and make a night of it. The Pottery Shed stagandhenweekends.ie offers a similar service in Kilkenny.
In Galway, hen parties are a speciality of Dance Divas stagandhenweekends.ie, a studio in Dominick Street. Choose a style of dancing – anything from Michael Jackson’s Thriller zombies to 1950s Grease style – don the costumes, learn the moves and have your picture taken afterwards on the specially dressed set. The additional bonus here is that you’ll all have a great new dance routine for the wedding.
The Strand Hotel stagandhenweekends.ie in Limerick has residential hen packages with a mix of cocktails, clubbing or discounted hair and beauty treatments to choose from.
Then, depending on what you prefer, the hotel can also organise, for a supplement, hen activities such as a roller disco session, private dance lessons, make-up sessions and even a nude art class. Just to be clear, the hens keep their kit on, the model guy doesn’t.
If it’s more practical help your bride is in need of, check out An Grianan, in Termonfeckin, Co Louth, headquarters of the Irish Countrywomen’s Association (ICA) Bootcamp, as seen on RTÉ. The D Hotel stagandhenweekends.ie in nearby Drogheda has special discounted rates for group bookings headed for the ICA.
Finally, how about a hen party in a place where there really are hens? Causey Farm stagandhenweekends.ie, in Meath, attracts brides-to-be and their buddies to find out how to chase chooks, milk cows and catch banbhs.
There’s art too, as guests are encouraged to paint their life stories on the walls of barns. And there’s a spa element – in that hens are led to a strip of bog, told to take off their tights or socks and walk, barefoot, through it, for a pedicure like no other.
Causey’s owners can arrange accommodation packages with local hotels, leaving hens free to address practical skills such as how to bake soda bread, play the bodhrán and dance jigs, possibly all at the same time.
On-farm fun is guaranteed and you’ll all be BFFs, like, forever.
Win a spa break for two at The 5* Heritage Golf & Spa Resort
The Irish Times has teamed up with The Heritage Golf & Spa Resort to offer you the chance to win a luxurious two night bed and breakfast stay for two people.
About The Heritage:
Set amidst the unspoilt countryside of Co. Laois, and located just an hour's drive from Dublin off the M7 motorway, the Five Star Heritage Golf & Spa Resort offers guests a truly luxurious hospitality experience. This award winning resort boasts comfortable and elegant guestrooms, a luxury spa and health club, state of the art meeting & conference facilities, a championship golf course, a selection of restaurants and above all a warm welcome for guests! For information about The Heritage Golf & Spa Resort, click here to visit their website.
The Heritage Golf & Spa Resort is offering a wonderful Pamber Break Gift Voucher for two. Relax and unwind with two nights' bed and breakfast in a deluxe guestroom, dinner in The Arlington Room on one night and take time out to journey through The Heritage Spa Experience for up to 3 hours; plus you can also choose from one of the following one hour treatments:
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Dublin whats on, Christmas Special, The Irish House Party, FREE tickets, Christmas dinner, Christmas ceili, irish dancing, Christmas party, Christmas draw
The Irish House Party is offering 4 FREE tickets for their spectacular Christmas Ceili, Dinner and Show, what an unbelievable recession beating Christmas making special. The Irish House Party at 19 Francis Street, Dublin, is Ireland’s leading traditional Irish session venue with Ireland’s leading musicians, singers and dancers performing shows that are unequalled anywhere else in Ireland or further afield.
This is your chance to join The Irish House Party for their Christmas spectacular, the 4 FREE tickets include a sit down Christmas dinner in the tastefully decorated Irish House Party pub and restaurant at 19 Francis Street Dublin, followed by a short walk across the street to the fantastic Tivoli Theatre where you will enjoy the greatest traditional Irish session ever. When you have been blown away by the music and the crack in the Tivoli you can return to the Irish House Party bar to enjoy the music of good old fashioned foot stamping pub session with Ireland’s greatest musicians, singers and dancers. This is a session you won’t want to leave and a traditional Christmas you will not forget.
Meet Gerry, Declan and all the Irish House Party team, chat about Irish culture and tradition, the Irish House Party team are world class performers, but down to earth people, who want you not only to enjoy Irish culture and tradition but to share their knowledge of music and culture so that your experience is one of learning as well as enjoyment.
You can see The Irish House Party Christmas dinner and show on their website and you can view the Tivoli Theatre with their fantastic Christmas Panto, Snow White, also advertised.
To enter this draw for 4 FREE Tickets to The Irish House Party Christmas Ceili, dinner and show, simply LIKE Dublin Hotel News on Facebook. All of the LIKES on Dublin Hotel News will be entered into an open and FREE draw, 4 FREE tickets for the Christmas Ceili, dinner and show, remember the tickets may only be used on Saturday the 15th December 2012 or Friday the 21st of December 2012, the tickets cannot be exchanged for money, or any other product or service, if you do not take up the offer as presented then the tickets are void.
The Irish House Party Dublin Ireland Review 2012
For those of us who were reared on the finest of Irish traditional music, dance and folklore there can be nothing more disappointing than the often ‘plastic’ portrayal of those fine traditions by commercially centred enterprises to pander to a less than patriotic version of our traditions and nationhood. However, that is all about to change, and for the good.
Often, as I have reviewed the hospitality industry in Ireland, I have been pained by scratchy CD representations of Irish music, I have been unhappy to watch tired Irish dancers ‘perform’ their third ‘tourist’ show of the day. Finally, there is Celtic light at the end of the dark tunnel of gross commercialism.
On Thursday the 20th of September 2012, The Irish House Party nestled at 19 Francis Street, Christchurch, Dublin and twinned with the Tivoli Theatre, launched the revival of traditional Irish music and dance in all its glory. Gone are the big blasts and fads of the Riverdance era and its substitutes, and returned are the soft furnishings, and cosy surrounds of a Traditional Irish House Party.
The launch of the Irish House Party kicked off with a food and drink reception in the newly refurbished Irish House Party bar and restaurant at No. 19 Francis Street, Christ Church, Dublin 8. Parking is available both at the Tivoli Theatre Car Park in Francis Street, and on-street parking is also available (FREE after 7pm).
The Irish House Party Bar and Restaurant have been renovated to a high standard and presenting guests with an ambiance that is both welcoming and traditional, in the finest sense of the word traditional, the glowing charm of soft tones and traditional furnishings make the Irish House Party Bar and Restaurant a unique home from home experience. The Irish House Party staff are professional, courteous and offer all that is so often lost in our once famous Cead Mile Failte.
Unlike the often stand offish performers one fines at large commercially driven venues, at The Irish House Party, Ireland’s champion musicians and performers casually introduce themselves around the tables and sit for some banter if so invited to do so. The Irish House Party presents as one thing above all else, a labour of love, it is clear that this is a partnership born out of love for all things Irish, a passion to wrestle Irish culture and tradition back from the grasp of brute commercialism.
As dozens of guests filled out the restaurant on the first floor, the air filled with an aroma of traditional Irish food, Dublin Coddle tickled at the nostrils, as beef and Guinness stew titillated the very soul of all gathered. The food was of the highest standard and would have sat easily on the menu of Dublin’s finest Restaurants. While this was a night of all things Irish, the wine connoisseur was not to be disappointed, with Findlater (wine supplier of choice) providing such suburb choices as Tocornal Sauvignon Blanc and Tocornal Cabernet Sauvignon, just to mention two.
And what would an Irish night be without Murphy’s Irish Stout, Murphy’s Red Ale, Beamish Irish Stout and so forth, all of which combined to make a great meal, a world class experience.
Following food, drink and banter in the Irish House Party Bar and Restaurant, it was time for the 8.30pm show in the Tivoli Theatre. Many will know the Tivoli Theatre for its long service to theatre and music in Ireland. As I walked along the tunnel entrance, I was moved by the diligence of the Tivoli owners to maintain nostalgia with what was clearly a ground breaking partnership between the Irish House Party and the Tivoli Theatre. Once inside the Tivoli, the bar area is nicely set out with traditional seating and a home from home atmosphere, again, staff are both helpful and courteous.
The real surprise comes when one steps through the curtain as it where, and enters what at first glance appears to be someone’s sitting room, that has allowed, friends and neighbours to drop in for a session. The stage replicates a traditional Irish sitting room, with pine dresser and couches setting the scene.
The main body of guests are seated directly in front of the stage, the stage meets guests at head height while seated, making the guest feel as though they are part of a traditional Irish session rather than part of a concert audience. The line-up of musicians and dancers is a ‘Who's Who’ list of the best Ireland has to offer. The casual stage setting makes the audience feel relaxed and at home, the banter, folklore and organic conversation between the session musicians and dancers adds an authenticity rarely if ever seen in modern representations of the Irish traditional session.
Soon the Theatre echoed with the haunting sounds of hundreds of years of all that is good about Irish Culture and Tradition, music and song were not only played but explained, instruments were not a mystery but visualisations used to explain their time and place in our long rich history. Three hundred year old tunes, that made Leonardo De Caprio and Kate Winslet famous in the great epic Titanic, captured the hand and foot stamping mood of the guests gathered, Bono and U2 echoed from the traditional instruments as easily as the lyrics written by 1916 Patriot and Irish hero Padraig Pearse. A straw poll was taken before the bouzouki and its player told a strange story about a well-meaning rugby player, and this was followed by Gerry telling a story in song, about a yellow haired girl, who may not have been all that she first appeared.
This session with the Irish House Party was as much about music appreciation as it was about concert and performance; time was taken to explain the instruments, the songs, the dance and the music. The dancers stepped up from the couch causally and periodically, to perform what can only be described as dancing Gymnastics, the dancers reminded the audience, that one does not have to be on a big stage with multi-million Euro backing sets to perform and transcend the very essence of Irish Dance.
Following rapturous applause from the guests gathered, many from America, New Zealand, our own Fair City and other parts of the world it was time to return to the Irish House Party Bar where yet more musicians had gathered to beat out a crescendo of tunes that seen even the most restrained, foot-tapping, hand clapping and singing along with the memories stoked by a timeless echo of ancient tradition.
The Irish House Party has returned Irish music, dance and culture to its true home, that is home is built from the passion and the love of the few, to be shared with the many. The Irish House Party, above all else offers guests a truly traditional experience, that experience is captured in the ambiance, the food, the service, the passion, and most importantly a true Cead Mile Failte has been returned to the Irish session by world class musicians and dancers.
Snow White and the Adventures of Sammy Sausages BOOK DIRECT
“Fantastic” “What a treat for the family” “Better than ever expected” “Mammy can we come back again”……
Just some of the parting comments of last year’s visitors to The Tivoli Theatre Snow White Panto last year, and no matter how mature we get, we still get a real buzz out of the traditional Christmas Panto at The Tivoli Theatre…..so much has changed in our world……yet the one constant is our Christmas traditions…..thanks to The Tivoli Theatre the next generation can carry on the annual pilgrimage to worship theatrical Gods such as Sammy Sausages AKA Alan Hughes and Goddesses such as the world famous Niamh Kavanagh as the Good Queen.
After his fantastic performance in Snow White last year, Alan Hughes returns to The Tivoli Theatre, Dublin, as the lovable Sammy Sausages ... Whatever you do, don't miss this fun-packed Tivoli family pantomime 2012.
One might ask if there is no end to the talent and vision of those associated with The Tivoli Theatre as only a couple of weeks ago The Tivoli teamed up with The Irish House Party to bring a new dynamic to the world of traditional Irish music and dancing.
This year’s Christmas Panto at The Tivoli Theatre is already being billed as the best show in town by those who love theatre and the annual serving of all that is great about the traditional Christmas Panto in Dublin. Starring Alan Hughes as the lovable Sammy Sausages, Brian Dowling as Bridie the Mirror, Niamh Kavanagh as the Good Queen and Niall Sheehy, finalist in ITV’s Superstar, this is one Panto not to be missed!
12 December 2012 – 12 January 2013
TICKETS: €21.50 (Preview) / €100 for Family Ticket (2 x Adults & 2 x Children) / €29.50 Adults & Children
BOXOFFICE: 01 454 4472 (No Booking Fees Apply)
Limited number of Family Tickets available per performance
The Tivoli Theatre, 135-138 Francis Street, Dublin 8, Ireland.
Telephone: +353 (1) 454 4472/Email: firstname.lastname@example.org