Interpreting Killarney's tourism jewel

Kathleen O'Sullivan

After several years of vision and hard work, the redevelopment of Killarney House is now complete. The Killarney House, Pleasure Grounds and Gardens project, which was initiated in 2011, was finalised at the official opening on Friday.

The redevelopment has included the restoration of the gardens and the formal rooms and is now complete, with the new interpretive exhibition centre unveiled last week. This will now operate as the National Park Visitor Centre and gateway to the park itself. Minister of State Brendan Griffin formally opened the grounds on Friday, and speaking at the event, he said the development is of great benefit to the local area.

"The opening is a hugely positive development, not just for Killarney but for the whole south-west region," Minister Griffin said.

"I am sure that it will cement its reputation as a unique and iconic visitor attraction, providing even more incentives and reasons for visitors to stay in the region for longer."

The opening on Friday was the culmination of the work done by Fáilte Ireland and the National Parks and Wildlife Service. The flagship €10 million project - led by the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht - is hoped to increase benefit of the local and national economy.

Minister Josepha Madigan feels the added attraction will be something of great interest to visitors.  "This exhibition at Killarney House will continue to educate, fascinate and delight many generations to come," she said.