'Hanging garden' joins the club
THE sky will be the limit for Dublin's exclusive members' club Residence as it brings some gold-medal Irish hospitality to garden designer Diarmuid Gavin's towering wonder at this week's Chelsea Flower Show in London.
The St Stephen's Green club and restaurant, which is at the centre of a dispute with former owners, the Stokes brothers, and was rescued from receivership two years ago by wealthy international businesswoman Olivia Gaynor Long, has snapped up two floors on Gavin's inspirational seven-storey creation, titled 'The Westland Magic To- wer Garden', for its members.
Guests may even get to rub shoulders with stars of screen and stage, including actresses Kate Hudson and Gwyneth Paltrow, who are expected to visit the show and Gavin's garden, which is already the most talked-about exhibit at the show.
The garden, which will be the tallest-ever created for the festival and will come complete with an array of over 3,000 plants, is expected to put Gavin in contention for a second successive Gold Medal at the world's most famous flower show.
Gaynor Long, who has confounded many by transforming the fortunes of the club, showed she still has an eye for real estate as she jumped at the offer from Gavin to bring the club's 'silver-service' offering on to two floors of what will be the hottest property in all of London this week.
The shrewd business woman is sending over the club's restaurant head chef, Graham Neville, and a handful of staff to fete those who step into the garden, which, according to Gavin, was inspired by the Hanging Gardens of Babylon.
Following the show, which runs from next Tuesday through to Saturday, there are plans to repatriate the Irish-grown vegetables among the 3,000 plants in the garden to Residence.
The produce will be used in its award-winning Restaurant 41 for what it is hoped will be a celebratory banquet for another Diarmuid Gavin success at the Chelsea show.