Dublin’s Merrion Hotel celebrates its 21st and 252nd birthdays
Two hundred and fifty years ago Dublin was a city of fashion and wealth, political unrest and poverty. And it was 21 years ago that four adjoining mansions that were built 252 years ago in 1766 – a decade before the independence of the United States – were fashioned into Dublin’s most prestigious hotel. “The story of The Merrion is the story of Ireland,” says General Manager Peter MacCann, “and to celebrate the 21st birthday of the hotel, we’ve commissioned a new publication designed to recall its unique heritage – The History of The Merrion Hotel.”
From musical soirées to political intrigue, love and betrayal, dueling and dinner parties, the buildings of The Merrion Hotel have been at the heart of Ireland’s history for a quarter millennium. Today, guests at The Merrion enter through the magnificent foyer of Number 24 Upper Merrion Street. Many arrive for important meetings that could change a person’s life or even a country’s destiny with Leinster House, the seat of the Irish Government, located across the street. But others arrive just to luxuriate in the meticulously maintained splendor of Dublin’s most distinguished hotel.
Sir Arthur Wellesley, illustrated by Anna and Elena Balbusso
Richly illustrated, with original drawings by award-winning artists Anna and Elena Balbusso, The History of The Merrion Hotel tells of the wide variety of captivating characters that have occupied the four mansions’ wonderful rooms. Perhaps the most famous is Arthur Wellesley, born here in 1769 and who went on to become Britain’s first Duke of Wellington. It was he who beat Napoleon in 1815 at the Battle of Waterloo and later twice became Queen Victoria’s Prime Minister.
Then there is Lord Mornington who impoverished himself through his love of music, to the wonderfully named Valentine Lawless who took the Fenian Oath – one of the first political expressions of Ireland’s wish to be independent of England – within the Merrion’s walls. These stories are as engaging as they are historically revealing.
Alongside its rich history, splendid facilities and service, The Merrion Hotel is famed for holding the country’s largest private collection of late 19th-century and early 20th-century Irish art outside the National Gallery. The lavish portrait illustrations, recently shortlisted for The World Illustration Awards, 2018, also contain architectural detailing that can be seen in the hotel today. The History of The Merrion Hotel brings all the color and personalities of the period into focus, and will be presented to all hotel guests during the 21st birthday year. Additional copies are available for 10 Euros at the front desk or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information, please visit www.merrionhotel.com.
ABOUT THE MERRION:
The union of four restored Georgian townhouses, joined with a contemporary Garden Wing, The Merrion’s 123 guestrooms and 19 suites include a two-floor Penthouse Suite and private rooftop terrace. The Tethra Spa offers a range of treatments and an in-house pool. In addition to the Garden Room restaurant the Merrion is home to Ireland’s only two-star Michelin restaurant, Patrick Guilbaud. The Merrion houses the largest collection of private art in Ireland outside of the National Gallery. The Merrion is a member of The Leading Hotels of the World.