Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Home away from home: Killarney Towers Hotel, Killarney

As a four-star hotel, Killarney Towers hotel features rooms offering an in-room safe, hair dryer, air conditioning, tea/coffee making facilities, direct dial phone, wireless inernet, as well as a private bathroom with a Jacuzzi bath.

Additionally, a sauna, steamroom, whirlpool, 15 meter swimming pool and a newly refurbished gym are available to hotel guests. The hotel also features the in-house Innisfallen Restaurant, which features world-wide, as well as local cuisine. And last but not least, there are two music pubs on-site and your choir will be performing in one of them! Look forward to these exciting events while you are staying in the Killarney Towers Hotel from Tuesday, July 10th through Thursday, July 12th.

Home away from home: Dooley's Hotel, Waterford

Located in the heart of the city on the Quay of Waterford, Dooley's hotel is not only close to the city's attractions, but also overlooks the waterfront. You will be able to enjoy this view from Sunday, July 8th through Tuesday, July 10th.
Dooley's hotel features 113 standard guest rooms fully equipped with en suit bathrooms, tea and coffee making facilities, direct dial telephone, hairdryer, TV and WiFi. 
The hotel also features two in-house restaurants. The New Ship Restaurant offers foods with an Irish and European flare, while the Dry Dock Bar offers an array of hit and cold dishes and snacks throughout the day. 

Home away from home: Park Inn, Belfast

The Park Inn Belfast is located near the city center and close to some of the city's historical attractions. Besides a 24-hour staff at the reception desk, the hotel features 145 rooms, all equipped with complimentary toiletries, hair dryer, flat-screen TVs, in-room safe, as well as a full private bath and individual climate control. Internet access is also available throughout the hotel.

Additionally, there is also an in-house restaurant with a terrace, as well as an on-site gym that offers weight-training and cardiovascular equipment in addition to a steam room and sauna. 
For a more detailed impression of your hotel in Belfast, where you will be staying from Friday, July 6th through Sunday, July 8th, be sure to explore their photo gallery

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Lunchtime concert at St. Patrick's Cathedral is confirmed for Saturday, July 14 at noon

What better way to end the St. John's Choir 2012 Performance Tour, then to the lunch time recital at the beautiful St. Patrick's Cathedral in Dublin, the largest church in Ireland, on Saturday, July 14 at noon.
Built in honour of Ireland’s patron saint, Saint Patrick’s Cathedral stands adjacent to the famous well where tradition has it Saint Patrick baptized converts on his visit to Dublin. A church was built on this site in 1191 and in 1991 they celebrated 800 years of worship. The present building dates from 1220 and during the years it had been extended again and again.
The Cathedral is today the National Cathedral for the Church of Ireland (Anglican). The basis of the present building was built between 1191 and 1270, though little now remains of the earliest work beyond the Baptistry. Much of the work was overseen by Henry of London, a friend of the King of England and signatory of the Magna Carta, who wa
s also involved in the construction of Dublin's city walls and Dublin Castle. The tower (Minot's Tower) and west nave were rebuilt between 1362 and 1370, following a fire. In 1560, one of Dublin's first public clocks was erected in "St. Patrick's Steeple".
Throughout its long history the cathedral has contributed much to Irish life, and one key aspect of this relates to the writer and satirist Jonathan Swift, author of Gulliver's Travels, who was Dean of the cathedral from 1713 to 1745. Swift took a great interest in the building, its services and music and in what would now be called social welfare, funding an almshouse for poor women and Saint Patrick's Hospital.
The Choir School, which had been founded in 1432, supplied many of its members to take part in the very first performance of Handel's Messiah in 1742. It continues and although originally all-male, now also admits girls; a Cathedral Girls' Choir was founded in 2000 and sings once or twice a week. The Organ of St. Patrick's Cathedral is one of the largest in Ireland with over 4,000 pipes. Parts of it date from a Renatus Harris instrument of 1695. It was restored in the 1890s and in 1963.