Deals, Ireland

Craic Friday

And my friends in Visit Northern Ireland and Tourism Ireland can have this one… Craic Friday. For the usual consultancy fee, of course.

As promised more Black Friday offers (and like all the best Fridays they stretch into the weekend).

It’s always nice to share your favourite hotels with your friends.

Dublin’s delights

in with the fixtures: At the InterCon

And I’m glad to have passed on the charms of my favourite Dublin hotel, the iconic InterContinental in Ballsbridge, with my old pal and multi-award winning Travel writer Yvonne Gordon.

Yvonne has been editing an international guide book and dropped in on Nicky and his staff at the D4 institution, just next to my old stomping ground.

You’ll save 25% off their best flexible rate and enjoy:

A spacious deluxe guest room or a choice of luxurious suites with many with balconies.

And a special recommendation here from my own mermaid who rave about their 14m heated indoor pool and relaxation area.

And their 10% off ESPA products.

There’s limited time to book through Friday, December 3.

And the offers are for stays between Monday, November 29 this year and September 4 next year. And book three days before arrival.

Lusty helpings

Lusty Beggers… can be choosers

And you’ll have lusty helpings all right with the famous hospitality in Northern Ireland.

The deliciously named Lusty Beg Island Resort in Fermanagh is giving you 40% off a B&B courtyard stay for two for £105 per night.

Or book two nights B&B courtyard for two for £265 and receive. £70 voucher to use during your stay.

The offer is open from January 1 to March 31 and is open through tomorrow.

Donegal Mammy

Search and replace: That couple could be you

And, yes, no dip into Ireland can be complete without a namecheck for its northernmost county… my Donegal Mammy would never forgive me.

The scenic Harvey’s Point, set in the idyllic surroundings of Lough Eske and with the Bluestack Mountains as a backdrop, is just where you want to be at this time of year.

Or any time, to be fair.

Now if you book your gift voucher online before midnight on Monday you will get a 10% discount.

That’s towards the stay offers or can be used to enjoy an Afternoon Tea or a meal in the Lakeside Restaurant or Harvey’s Bar and Terrace.

So, even though it’s Saturday, I make no apologies for giving you Craic Friday.

That’s  Irish logic for you.




Food, Food & Wine

Hungry and Thursday – Ginuary

Veganuary, ve-gone.

You’ve already got your day, November 2, and I flagged it up back then…But as I watched a vegan on the TV rally other ice cubes (there’s a cracking meme which explains that definition) it got me thinking.

About how you go about claiming a month with a clever pun… well, there doesn’t appear to be any regulation!

About how you go about claiming a month with a clever pun… well, there doesn’t appear to be any regulation

They do champion it as an antidote to Dry January though which is all right by me.I’ve learned to like, not love, gin as I’ve aged

Probably because, like Heinz, there are 57 varieties.

My new pal Kirsten from my Tobago trip

I sampled half a dozen on a weekend break in Monaghan… Monaghan’s country roads

In the hands of a ‘ginoisseur’… nobody’s taking that one off me!

The Scary One also learned to appreciate G&Ts.

Mine-sweeping the sample board of drinks set up for me!

I also learned about the gin-making talents of the good folk of Fermanagh in the North of Ireland.

When they took the short jaunt down here to Dublin…

Here in Ireland it crosses social barriers but in England it’s a yuppie drink and a favourite of the plummy set.

But it actually has more humble origins.

You can learn more in the National Genever Museum in Schiedam, ten minutes from Rotterdam…

The Museum boasts exhibitions, obvs.

But where it really gets good is when you get to the distillery Old Schiedam.

Which is distilled in 100% malt wine as it was 300 years ago.


With my old drinking buddy Muriel

Before you follow one of the gin and genever tours through the city centre with a visit to one of the producers.

Should you be there in June for the National Gin and Jenever Festival you’ll get to enjoy…

Tastings, workshops, tours and music too.


A mocktail for Mrs M, honestly

The Scary One will be there, feigning lack of interest.

All major airlines fly to the Netherlands.

But the Dutch national airline carrier KLM always looks after me.

When I visit.

It won’t go down well in Rotterdam but the last time was Amsterdam… Pictures of Amsterdam and George Clooney and Amal’s Amsterdam hotel.

But before that was Rotterdam when I treated the-then Miss F on our first foreign holiday.

To watch the Netherlands v Greece football match.


Now she needed a gin or two after that!

For more information on the Netherlands, visit

And for Amsterdam it’s and Rotterdam