Tuesday 23 January 2018

The Edge: Olivia is footloose and fancy-free in LA

Olivia Tracey is back in Ireland for the Galway Film Fleadh.
Olivia Tracey is back in Ireland for the Galway Film Fleadh.
Bother! Barbados is short a beautiful blonde
Blaise O'Donnell
Italy is about to get even more beautiful when Ros visits.
Sweet smiles as Sharon and Emmet prepare to cut the cake at their wedding reception in Spain last week.
Ken Doherty in action
Barry Egan

Barry Egan

I hope you enjoy the irony in this as much I do: Lady Chatterley doesn't have a lover.

Or at least, Olivia Tracey - the one-time lead in Lady Chatterley's Lover at the Olympia in Dublin sometime back in the 1990s - doesn't have a lover.

Olivia tells me that she is decidedly romantically unattached in her adopted home town of LA. "There is no one in particular. So pretty much footloose, fancy-free and loving it. . ." So it is not LA Confidential then that the Irish beauty is single. When was the last time Olivia was on a date? "A few weeks back I was brought on a private tour of Jay Leno's Garage with a handsome Harley Davidson dealer." Glad to hear it.

The Miss Ireland 1984 who moved to Los Angeles in January, 1997, to pursue her acting career in Hollywood, has gone from strength to strength. . .but not from man to man..

She flew into Ireland last week for the premiere of the documentary Rebel Rossa at the Galway Film Fleadh.

Olivia is executive producer on the project, which, she told me, "is about one of our great Irish heroes, Jeremiah O'Donovan Rossa, written and produced by his two great grandsons - Brooklyn brothers Williams and Rossa Cole."

One of the brothers, Williams Rossa Cole, flew especially from New York, just as Olivia was crossing the Atlantic from La La Land.

"It's a six-day whirlwind for me after finishing a short film two weeks ago on location in Lake Arrowhead in California called Actor's Life," Olivia told me, adding that she also "squeezed in a fantastic fashion shoot on Monday for Bellenisa in Fashion City with photographer Alex Hutchinson."

The 50-something blonde (though her hair is on occasion 50 shades of grey as opposed to mine which is 50 shades of ginge) is jetting back to Chicago this weekend to begin shooting on a comic TV series, The Moochie Kalala Detectives' Club. All this while Olivia is happy to remain in the single girls' club.

It's a given that Jane's in Barbs

Bother! Barbados is short a beautiful blonde

Blonde beauty Jane Given flew home the weekend before last to England from a holiday in Barbados on Virgin upper class from Bridgetown.

Doubtless the Virgin captain - like Jane's ex-husband, former Ireland goalkeeper Shay Given - had a safe pair of hands on the flight home.

"Feeling blessed," she said.

"The most amazing holiday with wonderful friends old and new...Until next time Barbados," added Jane, who had been pretty-in-pink at last month in the Royal Enclosure at Royal Ascot.

The gorgeous former schoolteacher from Glasgow, who is a regular fixture at social events in Ireland, stayed at the Sandy Lane Hotel during her swish sojourn in Barbados. She was spotted on the beach in a long white dress and a red hat. There were also sightings of the stunning Scot on a boat in a cowboy hat and a beach dress.

The blonde with Miss World good looks was also sighted at the bar of The Sandy Lane enjoying a French Martini. And why not?

In August, Louis Walsh is jetting off to his second home in South Beach in Miami for a well-earned two-week break. Well-earned because he will be working flat-out on the X Factor in between. When I spoke to him last week, Louis was in London to do the X Factor boot camp all week.

Blaise with her beau in the heat of UAE

Blaise O'Donnell

There are no sea views in the desert - unless you are hallucinating from the heat and the sun. So, did Blaise O'Donnell (formerly of Gorse Hill in Killiney and the aforesaid world-famous sea vistas) visit  the sands of Abu Dhabi last weekend to escape from her recent  past?

No -  she merely went on a romantic break with her new boyfriend, Stephen. The happy pair  looked particularly loved-up in the picture that I saw of Blaise and Stephen in the sweltering desert heat of the United Arab Emirates last week. Naturally, Blaise, below, was rocking  a new fashion look of white blouse and dark glasses. (Obviously, an orange guna would have looked slightly - if not entirely - ridic in the middle of the UAE desert.) Her new beau, sun-tanned Stephen, meanwhile, rocked the unshaven look in a grey hat, rock star glasses and a blue T-shirt. "Nothing gets past you!" Blaise laughed. "We've been going out for a couple of months."

Rosanna and Wes plan to jet to Venice to mark Wes's birthday

Italy is about to get even more beautiful when Ros visits.

Your diarist doesn't doubt that Rosanna Davison and Wesley Quirke are always telling each-other,  "I will be with you, whatever. . ."

And the happy couple with be with each other whatever in September when they jet to Italy to celebrate Wes's birthday. "We are thinking Venice as we've both never been," the former Miss World told me. Venice? I'm sure you will join The Bridge Of Sighs in sighing in excited anticipation for Rosie and Wes.

On the subject of loved-up couples flying away to romantic destinations, rugby god Cian Healy and his gorgeous girlfriend Laura Smith were spotted in Sandy Lane in Barbs as I call it. They were also sighted at the Faithless concert at the Royal Hospital Kilmainham last weekend with a group of pals, with Laura looking flowery in a floral bomber jacket and jeans. She looked almost as look-at-me cool as union grand fromage Brendan Ogle wearing his wraparound shades in Dublin Zoo last weekend. Meanwhile, I also spotted Siptu Communications Head, Frank Connolly, in the Shelbourne on Thursday afternoon.

I know. I'm everywhere, aren't I?

Sharon and Emmet tie the knot in Palma  de Mallorca

Sweet smiles as Sharon and Emmet prepare to cut the cake at their wedding reception in Spain last week.

The Smurfs up!  As was the mood and the champagne glasses for the toasts at the wedding last week for Dr Michael Smurfit's daughter Sharon and long-term partner Emmet Savage in Spain.

The intimate wedding reception for family and friends was held at the Castillo Hotel Son Vida in Palma de Mallorca.

And was clearly an enjoyable day in the sun. . .

"The best time ever," Sharon posted on her Facebook page (yes, we're friends on Facebook).

The radiant bride - looking exquisitely beautiful in a white dress beside her new husband in a blue suit with a white shirt - and groom were positively beaming as they cut the giant wedding cake at the reception. They had a civil ceremony at the K Club in Kildare (where Shazza is the Director of Golf) on June 2.

They say the best attracts the best, and the happy couple's big day was organised with great style by event organiser Tara Fay's Xena Productions.

Sharon and Emmet got engaged in December, 2012, having been seeing each other for five years before that, and are officially one of Ireland's most romantic duos. I don't think I have ever seen them without a serene smile of sorts on their faces.

Indeed, my spies in Spain tell me Shazza and Emmet have never been happier in their lives.

So, it's not just the weather then.

Christmas in July for Marty as Frank Gleeson has big plans

Ken Doherty.jpg
Ken Doherty in action

You'd rarely be snookered for somewhere cool to eat in Ireland.  Unsurprisingly,  Irish snooker legend Ken Doherty  was right on cue for a lovely, even gourmet,  meal last Sunday night at the Marco Pierre White Courtyard Bar & Grill in Donnybrook with his family. And like Ken's snooker breaks on the green baize,  it was a large gathering, an extended family group of over 20. 

Marty Whelan had dinner in La Cucina at Farrier & Draper on South William Street last Wednesday evening after recording his new Christmas album.

Yes - you heard that correctly. A Christmas album in July.

La Cucina, the new eaterie, run by iconic restaurateur Giorgio Casari and owned by the other legend of Irish hospitality Frank Gleeson, is having its official opening night on Thursday with 400 grandees expected. 400? It's like the boom all over again, isn't it?

Indeed, my foodie Deep Throats tell me that Frank is planning another hip new Italian restaurant very close to South William street with the boy Giorgio running it.

So hip, in fact, that it could well be the jewel of Frank's Mercantile Group.

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