Sunday 20 August 2017

Rosie 'n' Wes hit Paris for knees-up before Marbs

Rosanna Davison with her two Pomeranian pooches Leo and Ted. Photo: Robbie Reynolds
Rosanna Davison with her two Pomeranian pooches Leo and Ted. Photo: Robbie Reynolds
Norma Smurfit
DJ and artist Mo Kelly
Bertie Ahern loves it in Kerry
Aoibhin at in the gardens of Killashee Hotel in tres smart Ted Baker dress from Aria in Naas. Photo: Brian McEvoy
Barry Egan

Barry Egan

I can solve the mystery of why the smarter salons of Dublin were a little quieter last weekend. Rosanna Davison and Wesley Quirke were in Paris for an early wedding anniversary knees-up (or words to that effect).

"We really enjoyed it. Three years married on May 16," she told me. "Hard to believe!"

It is equally hard to believe that with the summer hitting Ireland - toute le monde in Dublin was suddenly acting like they're in Paris, sitting outside bars and cafes in their summery gear - that Rosanna jetted to Marbella last Friday (sans Wes) for a few days on a business trip.

Your diarist spoke to the former Miss World before she got on the plane to sunny southern Spain (which is possibly not as warm as sunny southern Ireland at the moment, but I digress...)

"We have quite a few weddings to attend over the summer," she said pre-Marbs, "so we're looking forward to them as well as spending some time with my grandmother in Wexford. Wes and I love going down to escape the city and chill out. We would love to get away somewhere warm too, but we haven't got any plans yet."

Somewhere warm? How about a staycation?

Norma enjoys Wilde birthday bash

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Norma Smurfit
 

Smurf's up? Well, Norma Smurfit was certainly in characteristic good form last weekend.

She celebrated a significant birthday on Friday night, with a big bash in the Westbury Hotel in Dublin.

The ex-wife of Dr Michael Smurfit took over Wilde's restaurant in the upmarket hotel to host a beano for a large group of family and friends. And why not?

Meanwhile, another beautiful blonde - top Northern Ireland model agency boss Alison Clarke - is just back from a well-deserved holiday break in the Bahamas with her other-half, golfer Darren.

It's official - Bertie Ahern for the Park

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Bertie Ahern loves it in Kerry
 

Bertie Ahern is going for the Park. Worry ye not Michael D. It is not, however, Aras an Uachtarain but Parknasilla, the palatial five-star hotel in Kerry. Bertie will be staying there this summer. How do I know this? His VBF Des Peelo told me when I met him in Galway last weekend. (Sun-tanned Des and his wife Philo had just returned from a sun holiday in Lisbon.) 

"It is his annual trip to Parknasilla with his family. I meet him there every year with my family. He loves it in Kerry. He is going to be 66 this year and he looks great. I met him at Maureen Haughey's funeral,'' added respected chartered accountant Des, who acted for Bertie at the Mahon Tribunal.

"I am happy to say on the record that Bertie did not receive one illicit cent. He was a little sore that there is no comeback on the Mahon Tribunal. His finances were very modest. Bertie was a great Taoiseach, the second longest after Eamon de Valera," Des told me over a glass of wine in Kirwan's Lane restaurant in Galway city.

On the subject of fine restaurants, Des added a memory of a dinner with his late friend Charlie Haughey and wife Maureen and Des's wife Philo in Le Grand Vefour restaurant on Rue de Beaujolais in Paris, 1992. The waiter kept referring to the Irish politician as Hockey until finally he snapped, telling the poor waiter that he was "not fecking Hockey but Haughey!"

The waiter returned five minutes later to tell the one-time leader of Fianna Fail that he had done as instructed and "turned down the heating".

Doubtless Bertie won't have that complaint in Parknasilla this summer.

There's no show like a Mo show, so go-go!

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DJ and artist Mo Kelly
 

The hills were alive with the sound of hens last weekend. Jodie Ronan, the delightful daughter of Mary and tycoon Johnny, held her hen night in Johnnie Fox's in the Dublin mountains.

The night was more fab than fowl. My Deep Throat told me that the bride-to-be (who is getting married this summer in Co Wicklow) looked "stunning" in a white dress.

Down the mountain in The Red Bank on Duke Street, artist Mo Kelly is holding her 20th solo show on Thursday. Everyone's expected - Liam Cunningham, Guggi, Patrick Bergin, Camille O'Sullivan, Bronagh Gallagher and Mo's mother-in-law Eileen Murphy. And who knows? The town might even be painted red.

Aoibhin gets racy at the Curragh

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Aoibhin at in the gardens of Killashee Hotel in tres smart Ted Baker dress from Aria in Naas. Photo: Brian McEvoy
 

I'll try not to frighten the horses. But they're under starters orders at the Curragh Racecourse for the 2017 racing season, which was announced at a jolly smart reception at Killashee House Hotel in Naas last week. 

Trainer Aidan O'Brien led the charge at Killashee on Wednesday evening. He declared the Curragh "the best racecourse in the world". Enjoying the night, Aoibhin Garrihy, a celebrity judge at this year's Tattersalls Irish Guineas, presumably agreed with his assessment.

It was a family affair for the Garrihys: her sisters Doireann and Ailbhe, along with their parents Clare and Eugene, attended, as did Eimear Mulhern, a board member of the Curragh, Tracy Piggott and Mayor of Kildare Ivan Keatley.

It was also an opportunity to hear about The Curragh's €65m redevelopment - which is all on track, according to Curragh CEO Derek McGrath, who took up the reins last year at the Kildare track. While the redevelopment is under way, there will be a full racing schedule, record prize money and a capacity crowd of 6,000.

Don't miss out on one highlight - the Dubai Duty Free Irish Derby Festival (June 30-July 2). I'll be there of course - horse-ing into the free champagne.

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