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

John Keane is our Master Mould Maker at the House of Waterford Crystal. Waterford Crystal is one of the few companies today, which still practises the ancient craft of mould making. Very little has changed in this craft over the centuries. Wooden moulds and hand tools are used by our Master Blowers to shape the molten crystal.

"I have worked with Waterford Crystal for 46 years", says John. "As a young boy of 14 years I was encouraged by my teacher to join Waterford Glass. I am  a native of Dungarvan in county Waterford had never even visited Waterford city until the first day I started work in Waterford Glass back in 1972!" 

John is our only craftsman on site who has worked in all of the 5 different production sites, Johnstown, Kilbarry, Dungarvan, Butlerstown and here at the House of Waterford Crystal.

During his 46 years with Waterford,  John has crafted hundreds of wooden moulds that are used to create our spectacular trophies and one-off bespoke pieces. The wooden moulds and hand tools are made from beech and pear wood and are a smooth wood, which has a high tolerance to heat. Even so, due to the searing heat of the crystal these moulds have a relatively short life span of approximately 7-10 days.

The wood is turned on the lathe as John creates the shape of the piece within the solid block of wood.

"Out of all of the moulds that I have created,  my  favourite has to be a piece commissioned by the New York Yankees for one of their players Mariano Rivera, it was a New York fireman’s helmet" says John.

This piece could not be turned on the lathe so John handcrafted this mould using a chisel and hammer, the mould took two weeks to complete.

                 

Waterford’s multi award-winning Greenway celebrates its first birthday On Sunday March 25th with a ‘Birthday Bumps’ drive which aims to encourage as many people as possible to get out, get active and enjoy using the 46km off-road cycling and walking trail.

The ‘You’d never know who you might bump into on the Waterford Greenway’ campaign targets locals and visitors to the area and encourages everyone to grab their bikes or skates, their runners or hiking boots and enjoy the Waterford Greenway as it celebrates its 1st birthday on Sunday, March 25.

Among the many big names to have visited the Greenway over the past year since it was opened by Minister Simon Coveney are sporting legends Paul O’Connell, Sonia O’Sullivan, Sam Bennett, Derek McGrath and Niamh Briggs as well as actress, Carrie Crowley, celebrity chef, Paul Flynn, model and foodie, Roz Purcell and former Taoiseach, Enda Kenny. 

Sunday marks the Greenway’s first birthday and is set to be a family-focused celebration, with costumed characters buzzing about and available for ‘selfies’ at strategic locations between 2 and 5pm. Several local businesses are organising promotions to tie in with the 1st Birthday theme. It’s been a phenomenal start for the Waterford Greenway as it scooped the ‘Grand Prix Award’ and ‘Best Tourism Initiative’ prizes at the All Ireland Community and Council Awards earlier this year. Data released in mid-December showed that close to 250,000 people used the Waterford Greenway in its first 10 months. Michael Walsh, Chief Executive with Waterford City and County Council, said it’s been a phenomenal first year for all.

“The Waterford Greenway has had an incredible economic, social and cultural impact on all the communities which straddle the 46km-long route. It has captured the local and national imagination and has been a huge magnet for visitors to this region. “The challenge ahead now will be to build on this success and encourage those visiting to stay longer and explore more of Viking Waterford while they’re here.

The coastal towns and villages, the communities of the Comeragh Mountains and the Copper Coast, the great houses and gardens of the Blackwater and so many other amazing tourist offerings in and around Waterford city and county all stand to benefit. Working together, we will ensure that the Waterford Greenway lifts all boats,” Mr Walsh vowed. Figures released in early December show that since it opened in March 2017, 247,545 have enjoyed using the Waterford Greenway. Of these, 105,639 were on foot and 141,906 have cycled it. Well over 9 out of 10 (94%) of visitors to the Waterford Greenway www.visitwaterfordgreenway.com rated it as either excellent or good. The Waterford Greenway is Ireland’s longest greenway and the spectacular, 46km off-road cycling and walking trail stretches from the Viking City of Waterford to the picturesque coastal town of Dungarvan.

 

The House of Waterford Crystal has gone green to celebrate St Patrick's Day 2018, as part of the Tourism Ireland Global Greening Initiative.

Some of the famous attractions and sites around the world will go green to mark St Patrick’s Day this year.Over 300 attractions, stadiums, statues, castles and towers across the globe will go green to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day in 2018.

Tourism Ireland’s Global Greening 2018 sees the return of the Sydney Opera House and new additions like the San Mamés stadium in Bilbao, Chimo the Polar Bear in Canada and the fountains in London’s Trafalgar Square.

Tourism Ireland’s unique global campaign - now in its ninth year – continues the organisation’s first half promotional drive to build on the success of 2017 and grow overseas tourism to the island of Ireland again in 2018.

The annual initiative, which sees a host of major landmarks around the world turn green for St Patrick’s Day, has grown from strength to strength, with lots of exciting new landmarks signing up to take part this year.

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

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.

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