The latest news from the House of Waterford Crystal....

At a reception in Dublin Castle on January 28th, the Minister of State for Tourism and Sport, Mr Michael Ring TD presented plaques to 80 winners at the 24th CIE Tours International Awards of Excellence.

Over the last 82 years CIE Tours International has brought over three million visitors to Ireland. The House of Waterford Crystal received an Award of Excellence for consistently exceeding CIE Tours client's expectations. The winners of the Awards of Excellence are chosen from an independent valuation of feedback surveys completed by over 28,000 CIE Tours International customers.

The list includes both category winners as well as those who have received a merit award which is made to those who have achieved over 90% in customer feedback.

Mr. Brian Stack, Managing Director of CIE Tours International said: “Since 1932, CIE Tours has brought in excess of three million visitors to Ireland.2014 was another successful year with revenues up almost 10% on 2013 levels. We booked in the region of 400,000 bed nights across Ireland and our success is due to the excellent service provided by hundreds of service providers around the country."

Foynes in County Limerick is closely connected to the origin of the Irish coffee, as with anything in Ireland, the Irish weather played a big role as well. In 1943, a coffee shop and restaurant was opened by Brendan O'Regan in the terminal building at Foynes.

Within a short period of time it became one of the best restaurants in Ireland. O'Regan recruited chef Joe Sheridan to run his kitchen. In the Winter of 1943, late one night, a flight left Foynes, destined for New York. However due to the bad weather conditions the pilot made the decision to turn back and wait until the weather improved. The control tower at Foynes received a Morse code message advising that they were returning and would require the staff to return to the restaurant to have food and drink ready for the passengers, as they had been flying for several hours.

Chef Joe was asked to prepare something to help warm the weary passengers and he was inspired to put some Irish whiskey in their cup of coffee. One of the passengers thanked Joe for the wonderful coffee, asking him if it was Brazilian coffee that he used. Joe jokingly answered, “No, it was Irish coffee!”

A few weeks passed and Chef Sheridan knocked on O’ Regan’s office door. He showed O’Regan his new drink in a stemmed glass and asked him, “How about that for eye appeal?” O’Regan replied, “Genius, Chef!”

And so Irish coffee was born.

At Waterford we created a pair of beautiful Waterford Crystal Coffee Glasses. Designed especially for steaming, aromatic Irish Coffee, these Lismore Irish Coffee glasses feature an elegant footed base with incorporated handle and a gently rounded hourglass bowl intricately detailed with the Lismore pattern's classic diamond and wedge cuts.

Did you know that Waterford Crystal has been fitting the Times Square Ball with brilliant crystal panels since the 2000 New Year’s Eve Celebration? 2018 will mark the 19th time that Waterford Crystal has been a part of the most iconic New Year’s Eve tradition.. and it keeps getting better! Each year, millions of eyes from all over the world are focused on the sparkling Waterford Crystal Times Square New Year's Eve Ball.

At 11:59 p.m., the Ball begins its descent as millions of voices unite to count down the final seconds of the year, and celebrate the beginning of a new year full of hopes, challenges, changes and dreams.

In Times Square 2014, all 2,688 of the Waterford Crystal triangles introduced the new design Gift of Imagination and conclude in 2023 with the “Gift of Love,” each year the Waterford Crystal triangles will depict a “gift” – a theme of global aspiration whose value is universally treasured. The triangles feature a series of intricate wedge cuts that appear to be endless mirrored reflections of each other inspiring our imagination with a kaleidoscope of colourful patterns on the Ball. 

For the 2018 New Year's Eve Ball, 288 new Waterford Crystal triangular glass panels will be featured and introduces this year's theme - Gift of Serenity - a crystal cut pattern design that celebrates the thoughts, deeds and reflections that provide tranquility, peace and composure.

Just before the 2018 New Year’s Eve Ball drop, 288 “Gift of Serenity” Waterford Crystal triangles will be installed on the Times Square Ball. This continues to happen throughout the 10 year time-frame of the “Greatest Gifts” series, culminating in 2023, at which time there will be a magical combination of all 10 Waterford Crystal pattern designs surrounding the ball. Perched high above Times Square, this crystal quilt-work of varying patterns will symbolize the World’s Greatest Gifts, serving as inspiration to all across the globe.

Ball Fun Facts

  • The Ball is a geodesic sphere, 12 feet in diameter, and weighs 11,875 pounds.
  • The Ball is covered with a total of 2,688 Waterford Crystal triangles that vary in size, and range in length from 4 3⁄4 inches to 5 3⁄4 inches per side.
  • The 2,688 Waterford Crystal triangles are bolted to 672 LED modules which are attached to the aluminium frame of the Ball.
  • The Ball is illuminated by 32,256 Philips Luxeon Rebel LEDs (light emitting diodes). Each LED module contains 48 Philips Luxeon Rebel LEDs - 12 red, 12 blue, 12 green, and 12 white for a total of 8,064 of each colour.
  • The Ball is capable of creating a palette of more than 16 million vibrant colours and billions of patterns producing a spectacular kaleidoscope effect.

The House of Waterford Crystal presents a performance by Killian Browne in the retail store as part of its Winter Music Series.

Date: December 2nd

Time: 1pm to 1:45pm

All are welcome to attend and admission is free.

Killian Browne is a 21 year old musician in his 3rd year of college in Waterford Institute of Technology. He is currently studying jazz piano. Having started playing music on the traditional Irish banjo, he took up the piano in secondary school after falling in love with the music of Mozart Beethoven and Chopin. He completed his Grade 8 exam before entering college and chose to study jazz due to his love for improvisation. Killian currently plays professionally with Waterford based Funk band Backroad Smokers Club and with this band toured around Ireland playing various festivals such as Body and Soul and Electric Picnic. He also plays with a jazz quartet called The Speakeasies.

The House of Waterford Crystal presents a performance by Edmund Rice Choral Society in the retail store as part of its Winter Music Series.

Date: December 2nd

Time: 2pm to 2:45pm

All are welcome to attend and admission is free.

Edmund Rice Choral and Musical Society was originally founded in 1976 and is now an all female choir based in Waterford City singing for the entertainment of others and the enjoyment of themselves.

The House of Waterford Crystal presents a performance by Colin Harris in the retail store as part of its Winter Music Series.

Date: December 3rd

Time: 1pm to 1:45pm

All are welcome to attend and admission is free.

Colin Harries is a classically trained guitarist whose unique sound has been shaped by a diverse range of influences. This wide span of influence has enabled him to form an exciting concert repertoire that includes music from John Dowland, Isaac Albeniz, Francesco Tarrega, J.K. Mertz, Leo Brouwer and Carlo Domeniconi as well as traditional music from countries as disparate as Ireland, Turkey, China, America and Scotland. Colin is a former student of guitar virtuoso Michael O’Toole under whose expert guidance he gained a Masters in Classical performance. He has performed solo recitals in some of the South East’s finest venues (Christchurch Cathedral, Castalia Hall, Garter Lane…) and his work in traditional Irish music has seen him travel to the U.S.A., Canada, China, France, Belgium, Holland, Germany, Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Italy and Austria. Aside from his performance work Colin is also highly regarded as guitar teacher across the South East and he will be launching his own guitar school this coming September offering expert tuition in a number of styles and to all ages. Check out and give his “Colin Harries Guitar” facebook page a like to keep up to date with this and any upcoming performances.

The House of Waterford Crystal presents a performance by Fallaway House in the retail store as part of its Winter Music Series.

Date: December 3rd

Time: 2pm to 2:45pm

All are welcome to attend and admission is free.

Acoustic duo John Moloney and Kate O'Beirne from Fallaway House perform jazz, pop and trad fusion.

 

 

 

The House of Waterford Crystal presents a performance by classical Irish tenor Dominic McGorian in the retail store as part of its Winter Music Series.

Date: November 25th

Time: 1pm to 2:45pm

All are welcome to attend and admission is free.

Dominic, born in Dublin in 1978 started his vocal studies with the acclaimed Conor Farren at the Abbey School of Music,at the age of 20. Dominic has sang in Opera's over the years, he performs regularly on 'The Liam O'Connor' Show and is currently one of the 'Three Tenors Ireland'.

 

 

 

The House of Waterford Crystal presents a performance by classical singer Orla Forristal in the retail store as part of its Winter Music Series.

All are welcome to attend and admission is free.

Date: November 26th

Time: 1pm to 1:45pm

Orla, who resides in Fenor Co.Waterford is a 20 year old student currently studying History in Trinity College Dublin and voice in the Royal Irish Academy of Music. She began her vocal training in the Waterford Institute of Technology Music school under the tutelage of Waterford born Soprano, Valerie Leahy. In 2015, Orla was accepted in to the Royal Irish Academy of Music and during the last two years she has been a student of Irish opera and classical singers, Regina Nathan and Sylvia O'Brien.

 

The House of Waterford Crystal presents a performance by Knotted Chords in the retail store as part of its Winter Music Series.

All are welcome to attend and admission is free.

Date: November 26th

Time: 2pm to 2:45pm

The Knotted Chords are an Irish folk acoustic duo, consisting of sisters Margaret and Ailíse O’Neill from Waterford. Both singers, they also play an array of instruments including guitar, bodhrán, tin whistle, harmonica, banjo and mandolin.

Retail Excellence has announced the winners of its 2018 Awards in association with Barclaycard with House of Waterford Crystal scooping the coveted Visitor Store of the Year title. The 2018 Awards drew more finalists than ever before, with the third ever Lifetime Achievement Award being presented to Rachel Doyle of Arboretum.

The Awards celebrated the best of every facet of Irish retail across stores, people, managers and team members, ecommerce and suppliers. This year’s Friendliest Place Award saw County Councils and Local Enterprise Offices (LEOs) from around the country nominate their towns with Ennis taking the prize.

CEO of Retail Excellence David Fitzsimons said “We are delighted to recognize and award House of Waterford Crystal for being the very best in their retail sector. They have shown an unquestionable commitment to meeting and exceeding customer expectations as well as innovation in store and in-service delivery. We are particularly pleased that across all of our categories of awards Irish retailers, both big and small, urban and rural competed to deliver that exceptional standard of service to customers regardless of their size.”

“All winners are standard bearers in their sector and we are delighted to support and assist such progressive retailers be the best they can be. We look forward to working with the finalists, entrants and members into the future to assist in their endeavors and continue driving standards in Irish retail”.

The Awards were presented on Saturday evening (November 11) by media personality Hector Ó hEochagáin. The sell-out event was attended by a number of Oireachtas members and 600 Irish retail industry executives.

Congratulations to Ronnie O'Sullivan, who claimed the 29th ranking title of his career at the 2017 English Open with a 9-2 demolition of Kyren Wilson in the final in Barnsley. Waterford Crystal, one of the leading world brands in premium crystal, was selected by the WPBSA to produce the trophies for the new World Snooker Home Nations series.

With 200 years of heritage, tradition and exquisite craftsmanship, Waterford Crystal already have a strong association with snooker. In 2004 they were responsible for the production of the unmistakable perpetual trophy for the Masters and more recently were entrusted with the design and production of the crystal presented at the Paul Hunter Classic.

The Home Nations series for the 2017/18 season, compromises of  the English Open, Northern Ireland Open, Scottish Open and Welsh Open tournaments. A  trophy was commissioned for each tournament, with each named after a snooker legend hailing from that particular country.

This unique piece, the Steve Davis Trophy was designed by Waterford Crystal and  features the rose on its front representing the symbol of England and also features the logo of the WPBSA.

 

United States beat Europe to retain Solheim Cup

The United States recorded their biggest victory over Europe in two decades and continued their near invincibility on home soil to retain the Solheim Cup in Iowa on Sunday August 20th. The U.S. won by five points -- 16-1/2 to 11-1/2 -- the same margin as they started the final day in front of large and enthusiastic galleries at Des Moines Country Club.

The Trophy

Waterford Crystal trophies have long been associated with supreme achievement throughout the world of sport, and especially with the royal ancient game of golf. This seems to me a most appropriate association, in that the skills of the master artisan reflect, in an artistic context, the sublime qualities of the champion golfer - most notably, superb hand-eye coordination, a relentless quest for excellence and the natural extension of individualism via the tools of the trade.

Richly decorated with deeply incised patterns, The Solheim Cup trophy demanded the highest standard of workmanship from our Master Craftsmen of three great crafts of crystal smaking – blowing, cutting and engraving. Using a technique  that has hardly changed since the Middle Ages, the centre panel features a superb intaglio engraving of The Solheim Cup logo, which was designed to incorporate the trophy. And so evolved one of golf's beautiful prizes, born of fire and sand, proudly crafted with loving attention to detail by master artisans, designed to last forever, and now instantly recognizable as the symbol of one of the game's grandest events.

 

The Cup itself has enjoyed many wonderful moments in its brief lifetime. In addition to being raised high in the air at closing ceremonies by the winning captains of each Solheim Cup event, the Cup has been inspected by airport security personnel prior to trans-Atlantic trips on several occasions. It has flown in the cockpit of the Concorde. In addition, it has been cuddled like a baby in the arms of a hotel general manager who stored it overnight in his safe.

The Solheim Cup is quite heavy, weighing more than 20 pounds. Its overall height, including the mahogany base, is 19" inches. The top diameter of the cup is slightly larger than a golf hole - 4" inches - while the base diameter is 8" inches. A slightly smaller replica of The Solheim Cup has been created by Waterford and permanently resides at the Nicklaus Hall in the Muirfield Village Golf Club clubhouse, Dublin, Ohio. It is in stellar company, displayed along with trophy replicas of the Ryder Cup, the Masters, U.S. Open, PGA Championship, British Open, The Memorial, The Tradition, PGA Senior Championship, USGA Senior Open Championship and the PGA Tournament Players Championship.

 

This unique clock exhibits the finest combination of 18th & 20th century Waterford craftsmanship. The workings of the clock are by William Maddock who was the most prestigious watch and clock maker in Waterford from 1766-1790. The Maddock family were in the clock business in the city until 1850. A watch by William Maddock is in the National Museum of Ireland (ref no:4-1945).

The clock mechanism was completely restored to the highest standard when Waterford Crystal acquired the workings in the 1990's. One craftsman spent six months encasing the mechanism in 48 crystal panels and 250 decorative buttons each individually hand crafted.

This magnificent combination truly represents the splendid workmanship that has been the hallmark of quality throughout the centuries in Ireland. The clock weighs approximately 95kg/210lbs.

The clock is on display on the factory tour at the House of Waterford Crystal

 

 

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