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Hilliard’s winning combination is named Ireland’s Best Cocktail Experience 




A stylish new restaurant and bar, only opened since June of this year, has already put Killarney at the very top of the national cocktail map.

Hilliard’s of Main Street scooped the prestigious Restaurants Association of Ireland 2022 Best Cocktail Experience accolade at a glitzy ceremony in the Convention Centre in Dublin on Monday night.

Hilliard’s dynamic team members, Ariel Sanecki and Skirmas Lelys, were there to accept the honour from Restaurants Association of Ireland President, Paul Lenehan, and their success sparked off great celebrations.

Almost 900 restaurant and hospitality business owners and staff gathered to toast their hard work and achievements at the event and while the Best Cocktail Experience category initially attracted over 70 entries, from all parts of Ireland, it was whittled down to a shortlist of just 10 before Hilliard’s was announced as the overall winner.

The judges took all aspects of the business into account, including the variety and impact of the cocktail menu offering, the setting and ambience in the bar and, of course, a feature cocktail which had to adhere to a Roaring 1920s theme.

Ariel and Skirmas had earlier competed in an actual live cocktail making contest in the presence of the adjudicators who monitored proceedings closely and got to sample their delightful creation, taking technical expertise, taste, presentation and aroma into consideration.


The winning original cocktail, which they named Gladrags – in keeping with the theme of Hilliard’s being a former department store – comprised of a mix of Bombay gin, Killahora ice wine, jasmine tea, peach puree, orange bitters, apricot syrup, orange Cutacoa liqueur and lemon juice.

“It was a great success for the team at Hilliard’s and we are really delighted to put Killarney on the cocktail map,” said Hilliard’s mixologist Ariel Sanecki.

President of the Restaurants Association of Ireland, Paul Lenehan, said: “The awards are an opportunity to celebrate the existing and up-and-coming talent in the sector and they are a reminder that hospitality is nothing without the dedicated and passionate staff in the industry”.

For close on 150 years, the House of Hilliard traded as a landmark department store in the heart of Killarney town and it was home to the finest handcrafted goods, from drapery and footwear to haberdashery and everything in between.

Among those joining Hilliard’s on the victory podium on the night were Best Restaurant: Chapter One, Dublin; Best Cookery School: Aniar Restaurant and Boutique Cookery School; Best Private Dining Club: No 25 Fitzwilliam Place and Best Digital Marketing: Michael’s, Mount Merrion.

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Wedding open day at the Kenmare Bay

The Kenmare Bay Hotel is hosting a wedding open day on Sunday. The event will run from 2pm to 5pm and couples planning on tieing the knot in the future […]




The Kenmare Bay Hotel is hosting a wedding open day on Sunday.

The event will run from 2pm to 5pm and couples planning on tieing the knot in the future are invited to meet the hotel’s wedding planning team.

New for 2023 is the recently refurbished Banqueting Suite.

“See our new table arrangements and sample our new menu options, tour our hotel facilities and accommodation options,” said the hotel’s wedding manager Alan Donnery.

“Appointments are advised to ensure you get to speak to a member of the wedding team on the day,”

Every attendee will get a ‘Lucky Dip’ wedding prizes on the day.

“Make a night of it with our VIP Wedding Experience including overnight stay, wedding fayre evening meal chosen by our head chef, sparkling wine, late lazy checkout and more,” added Alan.

For more information call Alan or Síle today on 064 6679300, email or go to


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Ghost hunter’s video goes viral

By Michelle Crean They have a love of things that go bump in the night – and it seems the public do too – as a Killarney man’s ghost hunting […]




By Michelle Crean

They have a love of things that go bump in the night – and it seems the public do too – as a Killarney man’s ghost hunting video has gone viral.

PJ O’Sullivan from Púca Vogue Paranormal Ireland and his ghost busting team posted a video online around Christmas time, but it was only over the last two weeks that it went viral – clocking up 1.9 million views and over 2k likes on Facebook.

“We were naturally shocked ourselves at this,” PJ, who is originally from Gneeveguilla but lives in St Mary’s Terrace in town, told the Killarney Advertiser.

The video was taken in Redwood Castle in, Lorrha, Co Tipperary in October when the Irish paranormal investigator invited like-minded people to the location for Hallowe’en.

PJ, who has been a paranormal investigator for over 15 years, set up Púca Vogue Paranormal Ireland three years ago and works alongside his son Leo and his partner Eva Walsh.

In the clip, Eva and Liz Kelleher are in the background with singer/songwriter Rebecca McRedmond front and centre.

“On the night we had a total of 10 people in the castle for the lockdown investigation including our own Rory Murphy and Veronika Slomiany,” he said.

“It was filmed on the ground floor inside the main entrance area. It was a Hallowe’en paranormal investigation where we had guests including Damien O’Rourke from Cuppa Tea TV.

“We were investigating the ground floor. It was filmed in total darkness and Rebecca had felt a touch as we started and shortly in this clip she felt another touch at her leg. Eva had also commented the room had now felt tense, so on review of the footage we can see what we believe is her dress floating outward, and on inspection both her ankles show her feet were on the ground; there was no drafts, and it tied in with the experience so we shared that clip.”

He added that they share clips from investigations but let people decide for themselves what it is that they see.

“We share what we believe we capture and this is just a few minutes as a part of the whole night as we investigate the castle over all floors usually from around 9.30pm to 4am with breaks and we have up to five cameras recording in 50 minute segments continuously which we download after for review. But as you can imagine with full-time jobs and life it takes time to review all the footage so we mix what we do with pictures and sites of interest. We are non-profit on all events. We had done Leap Castle the previous night, this is claimed as Ireland’s most haunted castle and again shared the experience, but this is the reel that just took off on Facebook which has us surprised, but we are all very proud of Púca Vogue Paranormal.

“This is not our first capture from this castle as we have previously shared on their social media, we experienced more on the night which we will share at future dates.”

To see the video go to our Facebook page: Púca Vogue Paranormal Investigations.

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