5 things to see at Open House Dublin 04/10/2013

 

Continuing in the same vein as Culture Night a few weeks back, the Open House Festival allows visitors to explore buildings ranging from public, residential and commercial importance. It’s sponsored by the Irish Architecture Foundation and its premise is a celebration of Dublins rich architectural history. The queues aren’t as hectic as the ones seen on culture night because the demand isn’t as high even though the venues available are just as fascinating. Here is five recommendations to occupy you over the weekend:

Etihad Skyline at Croke Park Stadium

This architectural tour will take place on the Etihad Skyline, a 2012 addition by Shane Santry Architects. The Etihad Skyline is a walkway around the roof of the Cusack, Hogan and Davin stands, offering unparalleled panoramic views over Dublin from a series of platforms 44m above the city.

Farmleigh House

Located on 78 acres northwest of the Phoenix Park, Farmleigh was originally a small Georgian house, extended and renovated for Edward Cecil Guinness between 1881 and 1884. Among the many fine rooms for entertainment, highlights include the timber-panelled dining room, the ballroom’s Louis XVI-style decoration, and the elegant conservatory. The building’s great appeal may be found in its eclectic and numerous styles of interior decoration, as well as its careful restoration. Farmleigh was purchased by the Government in 1999, and refurbished by the Office of Public Works as accommodation for visiting dignitaries and high-level meetings.

National Library of Ireland

The National Library and its sibling, the National Museum, face one another across the forecourt of Leinster House, with simple facades to Kildare Street and more attention to the courtyard elevations. The library’s interior is in magnificent condition, from the handrails to the bathroom tiles, and the main reading room is a highlight, top-lit and rich with detail including the carved bookcases, plasterwork frieze and coffered ceiling.

Freemason Hall

One of the more popular spots to visit on culture night even though many were turned away due to the size of the queue on Molesworth Street this weekend would be a perfect chance for you to explore one of the more controversial buildings in Dublin. Home to the Masonic Order since 1866, the building occupies a long, narrow site and was the subject of an architectural competition. Each of the building’s meeting rooms is decorated in a different style: the Grand Lodge Room in the Corinthian order, the Royal Arch Chapter Room in the Egyptian Style, and the Gothic interiors of the Prince Mason’s Room and the Knights Templar Chapel. With memorable details and fittings throughout, the building is a uniquely rich, theatrical experience.

 

Aras an Uachtaráin

Originally a brick lodge built for Park Ranger Nathaniel Clements between 1752 and 1757, the house was acquired as an occasional residence for the Lord Lieutenant, and has been the official residence of the Irish president since 1938. The President!!! Deadly…