Friday 6 December 2019

Leo and Matt catch a few rays in sunny Barcelona

Leo and boyfriend Matt were loved up in Spain. Photo: Gerry Mooney
Leo and boyfriend Matt were loved up in Spain. Photo: Gerry Mooney
Chanelle McCoy. Photo: Steve Humphreys
Terry Bradley and wife Ashley celebrate 18 years together
Barry Egan

Barry Egan

Hola? Hola? Renowned Spanish novelist Carlos Ruiz Zafon once said that Barcelona is a very old city in which you can feel the weight of history; “you cannot walk around it without perceiving it. To me, Madrid is a man and Barcelona is a woman. And it’s a woman who’s extremely vain”.

His detractors — of which I am not one — may say that Leo Varadkar is vain going into his office at dawn in his gym gear, but at least he is fit to be Taoiseach, unlike one or two before him.

Credit where credit is due: Leo and boyfriend Matt do have great taste in cities for a quick break away from it all. 

“We caught up last weekend in Barcelona, which was nice,” An T told me. “We caught the match in an Irish bar over there.” As for St Valentine’s Day, “Matt is still in Chicago,” he added. So An Taoiseach was in the Dail last Wednesday, “other than a brief courtesy call from the President of Italy”.

Let’s hope Leo won’t be in Heartbreak Hotel until he sees his beloved Matt again. Apropos of which, magnificent Maia Dunphy told me as regards St Valentine’s Day that it is for “teenagers, the unimaginative and those with guilty consciences. This year, I’ll be watching my new show Heartbreak Hotel on TV3”.

Troc 'n' roll for Marty, while Guggi stays in

The gorgeous Garrihys were out in force last weekend. Well, all except TV star Aoibhin, alas...

Doireann, VIP magazine's style award winner for most stylish online influencer, plus sister Ailbhe Garrihy were giving it socks in Krystle last Saturday evening.

They were celebrating a friend's engagement.

Boxer Declan Geraghty came into the famous Harcourt Street nightclub after winning his fight on Saturday night.

The weekend before last, Mark Prendergast, guitarist with top Irish band Kodaline, was in Krystle with RTE 2fm radio superstar and all-round good egg Eoghan McDermott.

Around the corner on Earlsfort Terrace, RTE megastar Marty Whelan brought his lovely wife Maria to see the incomparable Declan O'Rourke at the National Concert Hall on St Valentine's night.

They dined a deux in the Trocadero on St Andrew's Street afterwards.

Troc 'n' roll, anyone?

Horslips demi-god Barry Devlin, meanwhile, told me when I bumped into him that for his Valentine's night, he would be "getting in the popcorn and watching the entire sixth season of Veep".

Like the rest of the nation, I suspect.

Former alt.rock star with The Virgin Prunes turned internationally acclaimed artist and gobby genius Guggi was also sitting in, albeit on his tod.

"My family are away skiing in Austria," he told me. "So I stayed in and had dinner by myself... Again!" the long-haired childhood friend of Bono chortled.

I wonder what the Simon Carmody Community did for Valentine's?

Answers on a Bono-fronted postcard please to Bellucci's Italian Restaurant & Cocktail Bar on Merrion Road, Dublin 4 - the Simon Carmody Community's unofficial HQ.

Irish glamourati slope off to Alps: French & Swiss

Chanelle McCoy. Photo: Steve Humphreys

Tony Smurfit's son Alexander was skiing in Courchevel in the French Alps with friends last week. Even more glam Chanelle McCoy (above) and husband JP also hit the slopes last week with the kids, albeit in the Swiss Alps. Doyle Hotel heiress, Ashley Doyle hit Rome in style two weeks ago, wearing a leather dress and white shirt combo. Meanwhile, Alison Doody was front and centre in her "favourite restaurant" Patrick Guilbaud's last week - enjoying the Brown Thomas SS18 collection. Doubtless, Alison will be attending the CMRF Crumlin Ball in the Clayton Hotel in Ballsbridge on March 3. Sponsored by Kilsaran, the night is set to be THE ball of the season. Tickets from Rachel in CMRF on 01 7091 700.

Terry jets back from NY for a celebration of love

Terry Bradley and wife Ashley celebrate 18 years together

Iconic Irish artist Terry Bradley is jetting in from New York this weekend for a significant celebration: he and his wife’s 18th wedding anniversary.

He and Ashley will be spending the weekend at home in Cloughey, Northern Ireland, with their children.

The reason Terry was in the Big Apple was to unveil a special painting, Bradley’s Dead Rabbit, for the fifth anniversary of the mid-19th century style Dead Rabbit bar.

Terry said he wanted to “create a deep, disturbed character, a journeyman who has been there and done that, not someone to mess with. I want viewers to keep coming back to the image because they always find something new in it, maybe something they didn’t see before or something they interpret differently on different viewings”.

But back to Terry and Ashley. They were married in a villa in Miami in February 2000, before chartering a yacht to set sail on the seas of love. Terry’s VBF Ronan Keating was best man.

 For Ronan and Storm’s wedding in 2015 in the grounds of Archerfield House in East Lothian, Scotland, El Tel gave the ultimate present.

The Irish pop star provided the grey artist’s board in Terry’s hotel room while Terry painted it and then placed it at reception so guests could write messages on it to the bride and groom.

Terry told me he “painted a character to represent both Ronan and also Storm’s background — Ronan because of the Irish dockers and Storm because she grew up on a ranch in Australia, and I thought the character     would be equally at home in any setting”.

Rosanna and Wes are bound for London - again...

I'm with Samuel Johnson. By seeing London, I have seen as much of life as the world can show. Evidently Rosanna Davison and Wesley Quirke agree. They are jetting to London this weekend. They don't need an excuse; they get on a plane to London - or, for that matter, to anywhere - like the rest of the country get on a bus to go into town. 

The one-time Miss World - and daughter of a certain Lady Diana-bewitching singer - and her beau "plan to meet up with friends in London and are looking forward to eating at NOPI," she said, meaning the hipster Indian-inspired brasserie in Soho. "We'll do a bit of shopping in Selfridges and hopefully get to the Victoria & Albert Museum for an exhibition too. We love wandering around the Natural History Museum. So that's on the wish-list too. We go to London quite regularly as my brother lives there. The main purpose is to spend time with him," she said referring to Michael.

In the meantime, Rosie and Wes were in Rasam in Glasthule on St Valentine's night to mark their love. They had Champagne to start, then a vegetarian platter followed by vegan Thali for Rosanna and Murgh Makhani for Wes. No desserts or coffees for them. How good are they? Former top minister David Andrews and his wife Annette were in Rasam the night before.

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