'Playboy' model Kasia in Pole position after falling in love with adopted home
Polish model Kasia Halela tells Barry Egan about how she fancies Micheal Martin and how the gardai compare to their Polish counterparts
THE polite atmosphere of afternoon tea in the Westbury Hotel on Friday was briefly interrupted by a Playboy model in vertigo-inducing high-heels.
If only the little old ladies delicately eating their scones could have overheard what Kasia Halela was discussing, it might have put an extra curl in their perms. (Indeed, the fact that Kasia is draped over seven pages in the new edition of Romanian Playboy magazine in her birthday suit might have curdled the cream on some of the la-di-da ladies' scones in the Westbury had they known. But we'll get to that.)
The 27-year-old Polish beauty, who lives in Dublin but was born in an army hospital in Braniewo beside the Polish-Russian border, says she would not necessarily sleep with Vladimir Putin even if it would stop the crisis in the Ukraine.
"Jesus no! But I believe I could use my sexuality to make him change his mind! I would definitely make him so busy with me that he wouldn't have time and energy for any political activities. I'm sure his perception of the world would change."
She talks in that heavy accent va-va-voom favoured in the late Seventies by breathtakingly beautiful Eastern European assassins in James Bond movies . . . and, more recently, by alluring Ryanair air hostesses from the former Soviet states who tell you in a booming brogue with vaguely sadomasochist overtones to take your seat or you will be thrown off the plane over the Irish sea.
Kasia has lived in Ireland for eight years and is as up to speed on the nation's politics as any pol corr.
Should Alan Shatter consider his position? "I think he should change job for sure. Maybe Alan should consider working in call centre?" Kasia says with a wicked smile.
Asked how she feels about the covert taping of conversations in garda stations, she laughs: "I hope they don't have recordings of calls with my boyfriend when he's away – that would be a real sticky scandal!"
I ask her how do the Garda Siochana compare to their opposite numbers in Poland. "I find Polish police a lot stricter. Irish gardai can be actually nice sometimes," she says as I resist the urge to ask whether the Garda Siochana have bigger truncheons than their Polish counterparts.
Kasia also thinks the leader of Fianna Fail is nice too. "I would say Micheal Martin is the sexiest guy in Irish politics at the moment. I think he is very cute and he has lovely eyes. I think that's quite hot."
How do Irish men compare to the men back in Poland? "I will always stick up for Polish boys, but I found my soulmate in Ireland. So its 1:0 for Ireland," she says referring to her boyfriend Lee whom she met in the Morgan in Temple Bar three years ago. "He was asking me for number at least three times – sending me a bottle of champagne each time. When I finally gave him my number at the third time, when I was leaving Morgan, I dropped my phone and damaged the screen. So I got new phone with new number, leaving my old damaged phone in the drawer. Then after two weeks my mum woke me up because she heard something buzzing in the drawer," she recalls, as I hope it wasn't what I thought it was buzzing in Kasia's drawer.
"It was him trying to reach me for the last time. It was Paddy's Day. So I thought: 'Screw it! I'm going to meet an Irish boy tonight!' And that's how it started. He is most clever guy I ever met. He is running his own business, and he can make the best Irish breakfast ever."
Given Kasia has mentioned breakfast, I feel it would be remiss of me as a journalist not to ask her the big question: how do Irish men stand up in bed to the men of her homeland?
"Polish guys are very passionate and caring they always make sure to look after the lady but you know my Irish boyfriend is like fire! And that's what I love. He makes my body burn, I absolutely adore spending every free second in bed with him. So it has to be 2:0 for Ireland! "
What would she say to feminists who'd believe that being objectified in a patriarchal and misogynistic jazz-rag like Playboy cannot be good for the cause of women?
"For me, being in Playboy was most amazing experience ever, showing a woman's body in an artistic way as Playboy does. It is something to be proud of," Kasia says.
Like a lot of young Polish people, Kasia moved to Ireland in 2006 because she "wanted to do something else with my life". Indeed she opened her beauty salon, Salon Euphoria, in Townyard Lane in Malahide almost two years ago. "I love Ireland. It changed my life for good. Irish people gave me so many opportunities, and I fell in love with Irish lad from Dublin. To be honest I adore my own country. But now Ireland is my home."
That's Ireland 3 Poland 1.