ADARE Manor was on lock-down at the weekend as the X Factor came to Ireland.
A ring of security was erected around the luxury venue in Limerick as programme chiefs continue filming the 'judges houses' part of the hit show.
The Herald can reveal how burly security guards were stopping everyone going in and out of the venue to ensure no-one breached the strict regulations in place.
"As soon as someone walked up to the hotel, they were immediately asked if they were staying there and what room they were in," said a source.
"It was all on total lock-down. There were a few cameras set up quite discreetly filming away but as soon as someone walked by that wasn't part of the show, they stopped filming."
And the normally chatty Louis was giving nothing away when asked what groups he had and how the weekend was going.
"We can't say where we are. Someone's doing LA, someone's doing Marbella, we just can't say where we all are," he said.
However, he has admitted that the group he has been given to mentor in the seventh series of the programme would not have been his first choice.
"It's not the category I wanted, that's true, but I still think there's talent in every category," he explained.
The Westlife manager added how he reckons he has been a winner with the past two years of the show, given the success of his acts Jedward and JLS.
"I didn't win the battle, but I won the war," he told 2FM's Will Leahy.
Asked about the return of Ozzy Osbourne's feisty wife to the show she sensationally quit two years ago, he gave her the big thumbs-up.
"Whoever gets Sharon is very lucky because she's a brilliant, brilliant advisor," he continued.
Louis added how he has big hopes that an Irish star will shine through this year.
"We got 12.6 million viewers last week and I think it's going to be our biggest series ever."