Tuesday 24 September 2019

Keith Duffy marks his birthday at Roberta's restaurant

Keith Duffy and wife Lisa celebrate his birthday
Keith Duffy and wife Lisa celebrate his birthday
Jordi Murphy
Baroness Michelle Mone and Debbie Deegan pictured at the Children With Love charity lunch in Fire at Dublin's Mansion House, where Baroness Mone told the inspirational story of her life
Kathleen Watkins hopes to celebrate her birthday by visiting Wexford Opera
Barry Egan

Barry Egan

Keith Duffy was in the zone last weekend. But then the Boyzone pop star, Coronation Street actor and entrepreneur always is, isn't he? He celebrated his birthday - and his 43rd year - in Roberta's restaurant in Temple Bar last Saturday night with his lovely wife Lisa and family (including son Jay and his girlfriend Alex McKay) and friends.

After the intimate dinner in Paddy McKillen Jnr and Matt Ryan's emporium on East Essex Street, the birthday boy and Lisa et al continued the happy celebrations at the pop-up Dead Rabbit bar at the Westbury Hotel, which was booked out with the in-crowd eager to sample what has made this New York bar a multiple winner of 'Best Bar in the World' gongs.

The success of Dead Rabbit shows that Dublin needs such a high-end experience on a permanent basis perhaps. And no one will be unduly surprised to learn that the man to do it is none other than Alan Clancy, responsible for many of the more aesthetically pleasing places in our country - from 37 in Dublin, to The Oyster Tavern in Limerick, to House, in both Dublin and Limerick.

In early November, Alan is opening the doors of 9 Below, a hipster paradise combined with a spectacular interior and posh booze under Stephen's Green Hibernian Club.

Leinster Rugby celebrate in Krystle with Rangan

There were men with oval-shaped balls in Krystle last weekend. My apologies, I fell face-first onto my computer. I meant to say some of the Leinster rugby team, Jordi Murphy (pictured) among them, decamped to Krystle. They were marking their hard-fought win - courtesy of Jamison Gibson-Park's 73rd-minute try - over Edinburgh earlier last Friday in the Guinness PRO14 at the RDS.

Some of the Edinburgh players joined the Leinster players in the chic club on Harcourt Street for an alcohol-free knees-up with the club's convivial boss Rangan Arulchelvan. Some of the cast of Mrs Brown's Boys, plus the actor and retired Ultimate Fighting Championship star Cathal Pendred, were also in the top nightspot. 

Kathleen: 'Gaybo is looking so very well'

You know you're getting old when the candles cost more than the cake. Blocks of wax that produce light aside, the great Kathleen Watkins marks her 83rd birthday next week.

Asked by your diarist, and her occasional Boswell, how she and her husband Gay Byrne will celebrate her big day, Kathleen told me that "All I want is to visit Wexford Opera. We shall see."

How does it feel to be turning 83?

"How lucky I am to have lived long enough to see five grandchildren arrive. I thank God every day. I feel great."

Looking great too, the legendary Pigin's creator continued that she "took a drive two days ago" to The Wicklow Heather restaurant in Laragh on Glendalough Road for lunch with her friend Anne Friel "who was down from Donegal".

"It was glorious autumn weather," she said, adding that she and Anne also went to see Sebastian Barry's new play On Blueberry Hill in the Pavilion Theatre in Dun Laoghaire.

"My old classmate Mary O'Hara is his aunt. It was wonderful."

And how is Gaybo getting on?

"Treatment ongoing. He is walking every day. He looks well. Kind people still sending good wishes from all over the country. We thank them from our hearts," Kathleen went on.

And I think you will join me in the wish that Kathleen and Gay will go on for many a year yet.

The day the Baroness left Clinton speechless

Copy of ELLE AND EMILY.jpg
Baroness Michelle Mone and Debbie Deegan pictured at the Children With Love charity lunch in Fire at Dublin's Mansion House, where Baroness Mone told the inspirational story of her life

Monica Lewinsky was perhaps the only woman in the White House in the 1990s who didn't get her dresses dry-cleaned - in particular, a blue Gap dress that  caught President Clinton's fancy, so to speak, in  February of 1997.

But that hasn't stopped the ever stylish Baroness Michelle Mone from admiring her. At a speech at a charity lunch in Fire in Dublin's Mansion House, she told the story of meeting Bill Clinton at an event while he was President and telling him: "I just want to be Monica for one night."

"He was too flabbergasted to respond," Baroness Mone told the crowd, before telling the inspirational story of her life, from poverty to global success as a businesswoman.

The event was in aid of To Children With Love, founded by another inspirational blonde bombshell - Debbie Deegan, who had the room at Fire riveted with the work of her organisation, which has been changing children's lives for 19 years.

"We have incredible success stories of children that had little hope, post-State care, going on to achieve huge success. We were thrilled to have Michelle at our lunch, endorsing the work of our charity and our gorgeous new charity shop in Portmarnock," Debbie said.

Christmas comes early at ab fab show

It's 78 days to Christmas. And the one thing women don't want to find in their stockings on Christmas morning is their husband, I always say. Sometimes even to my own wife.

The reason that I mention this is because over at the Bord Gais Energy Theatre last Tuesday, Christmas arrived early. It was for the annual absolutely fabulous gathering at the Boots Christmas Show.

In attendance, among others, were the glam Kathryn Thomas and Lorraine Keane. The latter was chatting to former TV3 colleague and firm friend Sybil Mulcahy. Model January Winters and wellness coach Alison Canavan were perusing the No7, Millie Mackintosh and Benefit gifts. Head of Marketing at Boots Ireland Gillian Hennessy, the host-with-the-most, caught up with the star who lost-the-most (weight not dignity), Triona McCarthy of Operation Transformation (and the Sunday Independent).

So, to recap, the Yuletide came early for Kathryn Thomas and Lorraine Keane, Sybil Mulcahy and Alison Canavan. There was a similarly elegant soiree last Thursday at the Solomon Gallery beside the Westbury Hotel. Suzanne Macdougald's opening nights at the Solomon once upon a time - in the time when Terry Keane was writing this column - for many years were legendary. So it is good to see Tara Murphy continue that great tradition at the Solomon now.

The night in question was the exhibition opening of A Slice of Life by Irish artist du jour Margaret Egan (no relation, sadly).

Among the guests were PR legend Pat Heneghan and his wife Deirdre O'Callaghan, Sarah Dunne, plus doctor Peter Lenehan and his wife Emily, to say nothing of Senior Counsel Frank Callanan.

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