Parknasilla Hotel – August 2007
The water shone like cruets on the bay
The Caha Hills episcopal in purple
As we lingered among rhododendron walks
And strolled on sandstone bossed with limpets.
Here the ticking of clocks becomes irrelevant,
Of no more consequence than the breaking waves,
Where indolence is justified and the measured
Flapping of grey herons becomes our sole template.
By night the virtuosity of piano and strings
Unravelling taut nerves as the spirit glow
Suffusing faces, spreads in common purpose
Reducing differences to one fond voice.
To the east the little nest of Kenmare
Warms its clutch while further west
The little knot of Sneem clings fast
To hold us as we drift beyond our time.
From The Lonely Hush of Eve – Selected and New Poems by Declan Collinge
When I received this book & read the poem above it reminded me of how inspiring Parknasilla is, and how, throughout the years, poets, writers & artists have been drawn to & have taken inspiration from the beauty of the surroundings and the majestic beauty of the Kenmare bay.
Having spoken to the poet Declan Collinge he explained how it came about ‘My wife Margaret and I have been coming to the Parknasilla Hotel since 1990. We fell in love with the spectacular scenery but made it our 'home from home' also because of the warmth and accommodation of its resident staff. In 2007 I needed to unwind after a tough year of teaching. The walks along the foreshore in the sultry calm of those August afternoons had the desired effect and the music provided in the lounge in the evenings were an added 'balm!'. I composed the poem against this backdrop and used the terms 'nest' and 'knot' to describe Kenmare and Sneem, respectively, since these are the Irish originals for both towns.’
Throughout the years, the splendor and importance of the land and seascape has been well captured in many an artist picture or in a writers pose from those who have stayed here. Adorned on the walls are paintings from Jotter, Mueller, Alma O'Donoghue & John Morris to name but a few. George Bernard Shaw was a regular guest of the resort and was utterly captivated by Parknasilla when he arrived to stay in 1909 & wrote ‘This place does not belong to any world that you & I have ever worked or lived in…it is part of our dream world’
More recently, the movie - ‘The Lobster’ was filmed at the resort & once more the resort hosted a plethora of celebrity guestsincluding, Colin Farrell, Rachel Weiss, Daniel Craig, Ben Whishaw, Yorgos Lanthimos, Ashley Jensen, Ariane Labed, John C Reilly, Jessica Barden, Olivia Colman, Michael Smiley, Lea Seydoux and Angeliki Papoulia.
The Lobster, is the first English language film by Yorgos Lanthimos, whose Dogtooth won numerous international awards and was nominated for the Oscar® for Best Foreign Language Film. It is a love story set in the near future where single people, according to the rules of The City, are arrested and transferred to The Hotel. There they are obliged to find a matching mate in 45 days. If they fail, they are transformed into an animal of their choosing and released into The Woods. A desperate Man escapes from The Hotel to The Woods where The Loners live and falls in love, although it is against their rules.
Colin Farrell commented while onsite; “I’m loving it,” he declared. “There is just mad beauty here in Kerry. It’s mind-boggling.Growing, up I never thought Ireland was as big, as epic as it is here. I’ve always known how beautiful my country is but I was thinking more of the prettiness, the quaint beauty of places like Wicklow. But then you come to Kerry and the scenery is so strong, so masculine.”
The epitome of hospitality and luxury, Parknasilla Resort & Spa blends the best of old and new – combining the charm, distinctiveness and glamour of a golden era with the highest of modern standards in sophistication and luxury.
So, if you are feeling in the mood to write or paint then why not follow the well-beaten creative path to Parknasilla!