Monthly Archives

February 2016


Mammy’s Day | Top 3 Picks in Dublin

Afternoon Tea at the Shelbourne

So next Sunday, March 6th is the celebration of Mammies. In other words, it’s payback time! It’s always a toughie trying to think of something different to, and better than, last year’s pressie triumph, and let’s be honest here, you’re playing for the highly coveted Best Present from an Offspring Award! Stakes are high, and you’re in it to win it! So here are some recommendations of where in Dublin to take the Best Mammy in the World this year:

For Mammies over a certain age, there’s no hotel in Ireland that holds such a perception of unattainable luxury and old-style glamour as the Shelbourne Hotel. Situated on Stephen’s Green, the iconic hotel has hosted guests such as Michelle Obama, Charlie Chaplin, Princess Grace, and the Kennedys. The Boston ones, not the ones from West Cabra! So to take her for afternoon tea to the spot which has housed so many stars and luminaries would be the ultimate treat, and not just on Mother’s Day. Served in its Lord Mayor’s Lounge, to the accompaniment of a live classical pianist, the hotel offers a Chocolate version, in addition to the Classic Afternoon Tea . Chocolate Afternoon tea costs €45.00 per person or Classic Afternoon Tea with a glass of champagne, €57.00. If you can’t get a table, you could always go to their No. 27 Bar & Lounge for Jazz brunch, and soak up all the atmosphere the Shelbourne has to offer.

Tel: 01 6634500


Only open since November, this spot is truly decadent with its extravagantly decorated restaurant filled with luxurious chandeliers, mirrors, and theatrical velvet curtains. Owned by Wrights of Howth, the delicious menu demonstrates their pedigree in seafood, with dishes ranging from fish & chips (you know who’ll be ordering that) to a full lobster, if you’re pushing the boat out. For those in the family who don’t like seafood, there’s also meat and chicken dishes available. And for mother’s day, they are giving mammies a goody bag filled with luxury gifts!

Tel: 01 5312260

The Seafood Bar, Dawson Stret
Housed in the former Tea Rooms in the People’s Park, this beautifully restored Victorian building is the perfect backdrop for a delicious lunch, or early dinner (it closes at 8pm on Sundays). What makes this place particularly special is its location in the heart of Dun Laoghaire. Make a day out of it. Walk along the pier, stop at Teddy’s and have a nostalgic 99, or stroll along the coast to Sandycove. The best gift you can give is your time, and experiences will always be remembered and cherished, much more than any tangible object. Time together. That’s what it’s all about. Happy Mother’s Day!

Tel: 01 230 3300

Fallon & Byrne, Dun Laoghaire

Photos above courtesy of Shelbourne Hotel, The Seafood Bar & Fallon & Byrne


5 under €50 | This Month’s Picks from the High Street

5 from the High Street

Yes, we know it’s nipsydoodles out there, but spring is apparently on its way! And just to remind you, those kind retailer peeps have stocked up already on all the new season collections, full of frills and pleats, and fabric so light, it will freeze your bits off, but hey, it’s fashion, dahling! Here are 5 picks from the high street, all under €50, to give your wardrobe a little refresh!

This versatile faux leather skirt can be dressed down with biker boots, or dressed up with heels. Perfect for injecting a pop of colour into your wardrobe. The skirt is also available in light blue and black.
Zara Faux Leather SkirtZARA PATCHWORK SHIRT DRESS €39.95
Get this season’s 90s grunge look with this patchwork dress from Zara. Wear now with black tights and biker boots, and in summer with a pair of Converses.Zara Patchwork Grunge Dress

Bomber Jackets are absolutely everywhere this season, and every retailer has their take on it. The H&M version, with its quilted sleeves is available in black, khaki, and mustard.
H&M Bomber Jacket

You’ll be bang on the frill trend with this lovely vintage-style sleeveless top. Team it with denim for a more casual look.
Oasis Frill Top
This bag picks up on this season’s tassle trend, and with a removable longer strap, allows you to wear it in multiple ways. Also available in black.
Mango Bucket Bag

Matcha Do About Nothing?

Matcha Latte

There has been a lot of buzz about Matcha tea in the last year or so. In case you haven’t heard, Matcha is a variety of high-quality and, dare I say, bloody pricey, green tea, used originally in tea ceremonies by Zen Buddhist monks who valued its health-giving attributes. It has been around since the 12th century, which is why you probably won’t have seen it on Dragon’s Den at any time. However, Celebland and the West in general, in its desperate quest to find the next superfood, has latched on to it like it’s the best thing since the selfie stick!

So what’s so great about the green stuff?

  • It’s full of antioxidants including the all-powerful EGCg (sure wouldn’t you know that would be involved). In the Premier League of antioxidants, let’s just say Matcha is dead cert for winning the cup, and spinach is facing relegation. That’s how good this stuff is!
  • It boosts metabolism and burns calories (burn calories, you say!)
  • Calms the mind and aids concentration
  • It’s rich in fibre (ahem, say no more!)
  • Lowers cholesterol

So what does it taste like?

Eh, green tea obvs! But if, like me, you can’t stand the taste of green tea, all is not lost. Mix a spoonful in with your favourite smoothie, or into a glass of apple juice, and it is very tasty indeed. There are a number of online retailers selling Matcha powder, or you can purchase it from the organic supermarket group. If you’re out and about, you can get it as a Latte instead of your normal coffee fix from the numerous independent cafés around the country. But be warned, the taste does vary somewhat depending on the type of milk used e.g. almond or coconut. So if you don’t like it the first time, give it a go somewhere else. Your wellbeing will thank you for it!

Here are my top three places in Dublin city to fill your Matcha Latte prescription:

1. Kaph, 31 Drury Street, Dublin 2
2. Cracked Nut, 71 Camden Street, Dublin 2
3. Oolong Flower Power, 4 Stephens Street Lower, Dublin 2




Marks & Spencer to get the Alexa Effect

Archive by Alexa Chung at Marks and Spencer

You have to hand it to Marks & Spencer, they sell great food! And tights. And knickers that wash well in all sorts of temperatures. And did I mention the tights? And then it’s a bit of a struggle. While their food business has seen increased revenues each year, sadly their clothes side has not. But bless ’em, it’s not for the want of trying! However starting this spring, they are creating a series of M&S &… collections which will see them inviting a range of designers and trendsetters to create capsule collections. Much in the style of the H&M collaborations, but without all the hair-pulling, kicking, and eye-gouging one has come to expect at a H&M launch.

First up to the podium is the ridiculously cool Alexa Chung. I’ve seen Alexa a number of times in the flesh, and she has indeed an undisputed something (or je ne sais quoi, as they said in the 80s), coupled with an effortless style, which will always turn heads. The Archive by Alexa Chung collection consists of 31 pieces taken from the M&S archive, but with a particular focus on the 1940s to 1980s. The pieces have been given a more modern perspective using different colourways and fabrics to give them an “Alexa” feel. The collection features beautiful mini-dresses, wide-leg trousers, a sharp khaki-coloured trench coat, and delicate camisole tops. With prices starting at €29, there’s something for everyone’s budget.

Here are some of the key pieces from the collection, which will definitely feature on my wishlist. The collection will be available in stores and online from April:

Archive by Alexa for Marks & Spencer
Photos courtesy of Marks & Spencer


Best Dining Offers in Dublin in February

Best Dining Offers in Dublin

If, like me, you get a ton of emails from different voucher websites, it can be all get a overwhelming, with the result that they end up straight in my trash folder. They are, however, a great and less expensive way to try out places. To save you the bother of trawling through your emails, I’ve put together my top 3 for this month. You´re welcome!

Location: 1 Merrion Street Lower, Dublin 2
Style: Gastropub
Offer: 3 course dinner plus a bottle of wine for 2 people for €49.99
Offer Link:

Location: 94 Terenure Rd North, Terenure, Dublin 6W
Style: Indian Fusion
Offer: Buy €5 voucher to avail of 2 for 1 Dining from the A La Carte Menu
Offer Link:

Location: 7 Ballsbridge Terrace, Dublin 4
Style: Irish
Offer: €35 for 3 Courses from The Set Dinner Menu for 2 People with Tea or Coffee
Offer Link:



Storytime in Dublin!

& Other Stories in Dublin

Well the Twitter hashtags were flying all over the place today as the announcement came that one of the H&M posse, & Other Stories, was coming to town! In fairness, it is great news, not only because they have a great line of reasonably-priced accessories in addition to their clothing line, but it also sees the occupation of a long-time vacant spot on Ireland’s supposed premier shopping areas, Grafton Street. The spot previously housed A-Wear, and HMV for a while, but now it has been saved from the fate of a calender pop-up shop by the Swedish superstars! Skoll to that, I say!

So on to the shop itself. Well, as a little background, the opening of its London Regent Street branch in 2013 was greeted with hysteria not seen since the Beatles (little fabrication, but you get the gist). & Other Stories is your basic one-stop wonder shop stocking women’s ready-to-wear, accessories, jewellery, bags, shoes and beauty. Its focus is on sharp tailoring or simple and chic items, so perfect for picking up some wardrobe staples, rather than throwaway fashion. ‘Tis somewhat Scandinavian in feel (it being Swedish n’ all), so the designs are simple and fresh, but the prices are lower than its more mature sister, Cos.

The store is due to open around September time. Until then, you can hop on over to their website and pick up your fashion fix there.