Connect with us


Hotel spearheads eco-tourism project




By Michelle Crean

A new eco project - Ireland's first hospitality urban farm - has launched in Killarney.

Over the past year, while society has been forced to hit pause, the team at O’Donoghue Ring have been busy behind the scenes - and came up with Killarney Urban Farm, Ireland's first hospitality urban farm, growing salads, herbs and vegetables for bars, restaurants and hotels in Killarney with the objective to curtail food miles.

The ultimate pandemic pivot, Killarney Urban Farm has transformed the space formerly a late night bar to a natural, earthy and innovative space in the heart of the town centre. With cutting-edge research and development, patented technologies, and a leading multidisciplinary team saw a lush and leafy installation complete with exclusive Green Towers, designed to produce high-quality food on a hyper-local level.

First tested by NASA in the 1990s, tower farms are vertical growing systems that feed and water plants through ‘w’ - a technique whereby roots hang suspended in the air while nutrient-rich water is distributed in the form of a fine mist, with the O’Donoghue Ring Collection becoming the first non-residential unit to house the Green Towers in Kerry.

Beehives were also introduced to produce some of the finest honey for the properties in Killarney, from the floral nectar of the neighbouring Killarney National Park.


“The tower farms will contribute to the group’s sustainability efforts by allowing the culinary team to grow their own produce just steps away from the kitchen, for a truly authentic ‘Farm to Plate’ experience. Not only do these elegant growing systems use 90% less water than traditional farming and produce 30% more plant yield, they also reduce transportation distances, packaging and waste,” Gemma Ring, Director of the O’Donoghue Ring Collection, said.

To celebrate the launch, John O’Leary, Culinary Director of The Killarney Plaza Hotel & Spa, part of the O’Donoghue Ring Collection, has created a unique offering that will be launching in November which invites guests on a guided tour to explore the technology that powers the farm, savour a taste of a plethora of fresh organic ingredients along with picking up some exclusive cooking tips and techniques. There will be tastings of dishes and a signature cocktail that encompasses everything the towers represent – hyper-local freshness, sustainability and innovation. The tour is followed by a 4-course sustainable tasting menu at The Tan Yard restaurant featuring ingredients produced by the towers.

The Killarney Plaza is now a certified member of The Green Hospitality Programme Ireland (GHP), has been awarded the Eco-Label and is currently in the process of receiving its 50 Shades Greener certification. As a member, the group has pledged its commitment to minimising social and environmental impact. The O’Donoghue Ring Collection is a proud member of the Killarney Hotels Sustainability Group, a signed charter between 22 local, independent hotels who collectively work together to reduce the environmental impact of the industry’s services and activities.

Other ongoing initiatives led by the group’s internal Green Team include the ambition to create a paperless workplace, the championing of food sustainability by sourcing from local producers with the inclusion of 10km Local Legacy dishes with all food on the dish sourced from within 10km of the restaurant, foraging their own produce and the introduction of e-chargers at the Killarney Plaza Hotel & Spa and Killarney Avenue Hotel.



Three Peaks Challenge to raise funds for Down Syndrome Kerry

This year’s Three Peaks Challenge, organised by Killarney Cycling Club will raise funds for Down Syndrome Kerry. The June 15 event,  the only one day cycle event Down Syndrome Kerry […]




This year’s Three Peaks Challenge, organised by Killarney Cycling Club will raise funds for Down Syndrome Kerry.

The June 15 event,  the only one day cycle event Down Syndrome Kerry is associated with this year, promises to be a fabulous day of cycling and fun!.

The 100km route challenges the stronger cyclists and the 75km route gives cyclists the chance to become familiar with Moll’s Gap which is part of the Ring of Kerry route.
The cycle sets out from Killarney, heading out the Cork Road. The 75km route (one peak) turns right at Loo Bridge for Kilgarvan and onto Kenmare, while the 100km route, (three peaks) heads over the county bounds to Ballyvourney, onto The Top of Coom and then Kenmare. Both routes continue on over Moll’s Gap, passing through the picturesque Ladies’ View and back into Killarney, where all participants will be treated to a burger and drink at the finish line.

“We will guarantee plenty of laughs and refreshments along the way, there are two routes available; 100km or 75km, to meet all abilities, covering some of the most beautiful landscapes in Ireland. This is the perfect warm-up for anyone thinking of doing the Ring of Kerry cycle this year or anybody looking for a really well run sportive with great craic compulsory,” Chairperson of Killarney Cycling Club, Kevin Murphy.

All cyclists who register online will be entered into a raffle for some great spot prizes kindly donated by our sponsors, winners collecting their prize at the finish line.

Down Syndrome Kerry’s goal is to help people with down syndrome to make their own futures as bright and independent as possible by providing them with education, support and friendship every step of the way.
Funds raised from this cycle will help Down Syndrome to continue to provide vital services such as speech and language therapy, occupational therapy and job coaching to their members.
As Down Syndrome Kerry do not receive any government funding, they are totally dependent on your support to continue to make these services available to those who need them.
You can register for the cycle which is €40 for Cycling Ireland members, €20 for accompanied under 16’s on event master:-

Continue Reading


BAR 1661 is teaming up with Pig’s Lane for a night of cocktail mastery

BAR 1661, the winners of Ireland’s Bar of the Year 2022, are taking up temporary residency in Killarney’s first underground hotspot, Pig’s Lane for one night only on May 21. […]




BAR 1661, the winners of Ireland’s Bar of the Year 2022, are taking up temporary residency in Killarney’s first underground hotspot, Pig’s Lane for one night only on May 21.

The dynamic team at Dublin’s BAR 1661, who have recently taken their talents to venues in Sweden, London, and the famous Dead Rabbit Bar in New York, are now hitting the road to Killarney for an epic takeover event.

Staunchly Irish and fiercely independent, BAR 1661 have two goals in mind; to introduce the world to Poitín and lift Irish cocktail culture to fresh heights.
Headed up by their founder Dave Mulligan, the Dublin team will transform Pig’s Lane on College Street for one night only. Since opening just a few months ago, Pig’s Lane has been raising the bar in Kerry with its cocktails, whiskey and wine offering. Kicking off at 6pm, experience a curated selection of Poitín-infused cocktails, featuring a bespoke rendition of BAR 1661’s drinks menu.

The crew will also serve up their unique take on the classic Irish Coffee with their Belfast Coffee, steeped with cold brew coffee, top-quality Irish Poitín, and rich demerara syrup. Guests will be able to chat with the team, get some insider knowledge on how to elevate their own cocktail-making skills, as well as learn insider tips on how to blend flavours to satisfy their own palette.

Two-time World Championship Mixologist and Drinks Development Manager for the O’Donoghue Ring Collection and Pig’s Lane, Ariel Sanecki said of the upcoming takeover: 

“We are very excited to welcome one of Ireland’s leading bars, BAR 1661, for an exclusive collaboration with us here at Pig’s Lane. This takeover is a great opportunity for people to meet with innovative mixologists who will be crafting bespoke creations right in front of them! We look forward to welcoming guests on the night, to what promises to be an epic event, featuring premium drink producers and unforgettable flavours.”

Before the takeover starts, drinks aficionados can join Dave for an intimate Poitín Masterclass. Attendees are invited to explore the diverse landscape of Poitín, accompanied by fascinating insights into its vibrant history and contemporary revival.


Continue Reading

Last News