Top Stories to hit the News Stands in January 2014

Face-of-Ireland-Ciara-Quinn-at-Finnstown-House-Hotel-with-OrchidJewels-YouTube_0001-300x225TOP STORY: What a cracking start to 2014, never in our wildest dreams did we believe that January could gives us such a flying start to the year ahead. Not one, not three but FOUR new clients signed up to Orchid Jewels this month. With a further nine hotels/locations to be announced. Our little diamond sales rep, Sasha can be spotted driving the length and breadth of the country in our Orchid Jewels branded van, she literally has not stopped to draw breath.  Our wholesale business has gone into orbit, our website is now seeing some 70,000 visitors a month, so we’d like to kick off our blog for 2014 by thanking you, our loyal customers, our wonderful clients old and new but most importantly, everyone on our seriously hard working team here at Orchid Towers.

Before we get into the rest  of the stories to hit the News Stands in January, we’d like to give a very warm welcome to the latest four hotels to join our ever expanding client list

Midleton Park Hotel Cork

midleton-park-hotel1jpgMidleton Park Hotel is situated in the bustling East Cork market town of Midleton, located just 14 miles (15 mins drive) from Cork City, this luxury 3 star Irish hotel enjoys an enviable reputation for its accommodation, conference & meeting facilities and delicious food, all served in a warm, friendly atmosphere.  The hotel boasts extensive Leisure Club facilities and has a Wellness Centre specialising in the Yonka range of spa products…..visit website

Oriel House Hotel Cork

oriel house hotel eveningOriel House is a unique mix of old and new, luxury and relaxation and the dedicated team at Oriel House ensure that our guests depart with nothing more than a desire to return. Our spacious guestrooms are the epitome of comfort and style, all of deluxe standard including three suites, double and family rooms.  Our stylish guestrooms are equipped to the highest standards for the modern traveller and have been designed to offer total accessibility to all our guests.  The Oriel House Hotel has established an excellent reputation as a popular business hotel in Cork, ideal for conferences, meetings and events.  We have an excellent selection of well appointed conference suites catering from two to four hundred and eighty delegates….visit website

Springhill Court Kilkenny

springhill courtAt the three star Springhill Court Hotel Kilkenny your break begins from the moment you leave home. Set out on your journey stress free knowing that we are easily accessible and have ample free car parking on site. The Springhill Court Hotel in Kilkenny is one of the best known hotels and if it is Kilkenny hotels you are looking for then look no further! Once you have arrived in Kilkenny City you can begin to enjoy our superb hotel facilities which include Lavender SpaLeisure Club, popular Image Hair Salon,Claddagh Restaurant and themed Paddock Bar and Lenny Lion’s Kids Club during all school holidays. Friendly, efficient staff is at your disposal for the duration of your stay. …visit website

Reddans of Bettystown, Neptune Beach Meath

reddans neptune profile picLocated by three stunning beaches which run from Laytown to Mornington, Reddans at Neptune Beach is a wonderful family friendly pub, directly on Bettystown beach with warm fires in all areas. Serving Coffees, Afternoon Teas,  Superb Food, Free Wi-Fi. Live Music. Great for Lunch, Snacks, Dinner, Book Clubs, Social Groups, Parties, Perfect for Business Meetings, Big Screen Television in the Main Bar Full Sports Package Sky Sports, Setanta BT Sports, At The Races Racing UK Food To Go Available on request (t&c’s) Bookings Telephone 041 9827412  Opening Hours Mon-Thurs 11am – 11.30pm Fridays, Saturdays, 11am-12.30am. Sundays and Bank Holidays 12.30pm-12.30am  …. more details here


oscarsClimate Change certainly continues to wreak havoc across the island, both ends of January has seen some extraordinary weather events. High winds, spring tides and tidal waves have destroyed homes and business’ up and down the country. In the meantime, Pylons,  Irish Water, Rehab, The CRC and other Charity debacles also continue to dominate the headlines in Ireland. Nevertheless, while we (as a nation) are quite appalled at the ongoing corruption within the corridors of power,  we (at Orchid Towers) were frankly gobsmacked when we heard about Michael Flatley’s hideous burglary.  Apparently thieves broke into his ‘castle’ and stole his ‘Rhino Horns’ from a room full of ‘trophies’. It beggars belief that anyone in their right mind, would wilfully be party to such barbaric animal cruelty [A room full of animal trophies] –  each to their own? However, it seems that karma prevailed. Speaking of Trophies, in entertainment news, January did not disappoint – the awards season is in full swing and you can expect a lot of that in this month’s blog; We’ve had the NTA’s, The Golden Globes, The Screen Actors Guild, The Critics’ Choice Movie Awards and The People’s Choice Awards….

Michael-Jackson-Picture-Download-Wallpaper-HD-FreeGrammy Awards Took place last Sunday January 26, 2014 What it honors: Presented by the Recording Academy, the Grammys celebrate achievement in the recording arts. The awards are now in their 56th year and have become the most coveted honor for musicians of all genres. Who votes: Members of the Recording Academy can cast their votes in 82 categories and are meant to determine winners based on artistic and technical merit, not sales numbers. Most memorable moments: One of the most notable is the 1984 show, when Michael Jackson earned 12 nominations and eight wins for “Thriller,” setting a record for most nominations. Other moments include Beyoncé’s 2008 onstage collaboration with Tina Turner,Eminem and Elton John’s controversial performance of the rapper’s track “Stan” in 2001 and Yoko Ono’s tribute to John Lennon as she and son Sean accepted the Grammy for best album (“Double Fantasy”) in 1981, just 15 months after Lennon’s death.

What happened this year: LL Cool J returned as the host. Jay Z lead the pack with nine nominations for “Magna Carta Holy Grail.” Dubbed “music’s biggest night,” the Grammys are generally built around musical performances. This year everyone from Imagine Dragons to Kendrick Lamar to Pink to Blake Shelton took to the stage. Plus, it marked Daft Punk’s first televised performance since 2008. All the usual suspects were there and all the predicted winners picked up their gongs….  next up…

stephen fryBritish Academy Film Awards Sunday, February 16, 2014, BBC What it honors: The annual British Academy of Film and Television Arts Film Awards, known as the BAFTAs honor any film that screened in British cinemas this year, regardless of the film’s origin. It is one of the only awards shows that does not take place in Hollywood. Who votes: Members of BAFTA may vote for the awards. More than 6,500 members cast their ballots. The general public is invited to vote for the rising star award, which pits five actors against each other. Most memorable moments: Technically this didn’t happen at the awards show itself, but last year Queen Elizabeth was handed an honorary award for her patronage of British film and TV by none other than Kenneth Branagh. BAFTA Chairman John Willis called her “the most memorable Bond girl yet.” What to expect this year: Stephen Fry returns to host and is always amusing to watch as he lampoons the stars in attendance, so expect lots of jokes about Hollywood. Nominations were announced on January 8, 2014. Film Independent Spirit Awards Saturday, March 1, 2014  What it honors: Now in its 29th year, the Film Independent Spirit Awards honor arts-driven films made on independent-level budgets in 15 categories. The show also highlights the winners of the annual Spirit Awards Filmmaker Grants. Who votes: Members of Film Independent, a nonprofit arts organization any dues-paying person can join. Most memorable moments: Seth Rogen’s hosting duties in 2012 remain a highlight of the awards show, especially his opening monologue, which included a memorable jab at musician Chris Brown. In 2011 Paul Rudd, Eva Mendes and Rosario Dawson got handsy onstage. What to expect this year: Patton Oswalt hosts. Once again, “12 Years a Slave” leads with seven nominations. “Mud” will receive the Robert Altman Award, which honors the film’s cast, director and casting director. This will be the first year with a winner in the best editing category, but the most exciting aspect will likely be the bits and comedian Oswalt’s hosting skills.

Golden Raspberry Awards Saturday, March 1, 2014 What it honors: Also known as the Razzies, these awards annually celebrate the absolute worst in film. The awards, now in their 34th year, are considered the “anti-Oscars” and feature categories like Worst Remake and Worst Picture. Who votes: Anyone who pays $40 for a Razzie membership. Most memorable moments: In 2010, good sport Sandra Bullock accepted two Razzies for her work in “All About Steve” the night before she won a Best Actress Oscar for “The Blind Side.” What to expect this year: Nominations will be revealed January 15. but things do not look good for “The Lone Ranger” and “Grown-Ups 2.” Anticipate a lot of stars good-heartedly celebrating their failures, although it’s unlikely that Will Smith will admit how terrible “After Earth” was.

EllenDeGeneresshow1Academy Awards AKA The Oscars babay! Sunday, March 2, 2014 What it honors: Also known as the Oscars, the first Academy Awards were held in 1929 in the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel and have been televised since 1953. The awards honor achievements in film and are generally considered the most important awards in Hollywood. Who votes: More than 600 members of the academy, all film artists and professionals, vote in 24 categories. Most memorable moments: There have been a lot of memorable moments at the Oscars over the years, including Roberto Benigni’s eccentric best actor acceptance speech in 1999 for “Life is Beautiful.” Other moments vary in poignancy: In 1973 Marlon Brando refused his award for “The Godfather” to protect Hollywood’s portrayal of Native Americans, while a streaker ran onstage during the 1974 awards. The best? Halle Berry’s 2002 win for best actress, which made her the first African-American to win the category. What to expect this year: Ellen DeGeneres returns as host. Nominations were only announced on January 16, so it’s too soon to know who will be pick up the gongs, but the Oscars are generally less quirky than the Golden Globes and often feature a very lengthy ceremony. The best part, as usual, should be the fashion, which always ranges from glamorous to cutting-edge. Want more? Most of the major film guilds also host their own awards, honoring achievements in each field. Although most don’t air on television, the winners often help predict who will take home the Oscar in similar categories.

Art Directors Guild Awards, Saturday, February 8, 2014

ACE Eddie Awards (film editors), Saturday, February 15, 2014

Costume Designers Guild Awards, Saturday, February 22, 2014

What with all them there awards and all, we felt we should honour one of the most iconic Hollywood Sirens of all time;-


bette-davis3Ruth Elizabeth “Bette” Davis (April 5, 1908 – October 6, 1989) was an American actress of film, television and theater. Noted for her willingness to play unsympathetic, sardonic characters, she was highly regarded for her performances in a range of film genres, from contemporary crime melodramas to historical and period films and occasional comedies, although her greatest successes were her roles in romantic dramas.

After appearing in Broadway plays, Davis moved to Hollywood in 1930, but her early films for Universal Studios (and as loan out to other studios) were unsuccessful. She joined Warner Bros. in 1932 and established her career with several critically acclaimed performances. In 1937, she attempted to free herself from her contract and although she lost a well-publicized legal case, it marked the beginning of the most successful period of her career. Until the late 1940s, she was one of American cinema’s most celebrated leading ladies, known for her forceful and intense style. Davis gained a reputation as a perfectionist who could be highly combative, and confrontations with studio executives, film directors and costars were often reported. Her forthright manner, clipped vocal style and ubiquitous cigarette contributed to a public persona which has often been imitated and satirized.

bette-davis1Davis was the co-founder of the Hollywood Canteen, and was the first female president of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. She won the Academy Award for Best Actress twice, was the first person to accrue 10 Academy Award nominations for acting, and was the first woman to receive a Lifetime Achievement Award from the American Film Institute. Her career went through several periods of eclipse, and she admitted that her success had often been at the expense of her personal relationships. Married four times, she was once widowed and thrice divorced, and raised her children as a single parent. Her final years were marred by a long period of ill health, but she continued acting until shortly before her death from breast cancer, with more than 100 films, television and theater roles to her credit. In 1999, Davis was placed second on the American Film Institute’s list of the greatest female stars of all time.

bette-davis2In 1962 Bette Davis became the first person to secure ten Academy Award nominations for acting. Since then only four people have equalled or surpassed this figure, Meryl Streep(with eighteen nominations and three wins), Katharine Hepburn (twelve nominations and four wins), Jack Nicholson (twelve nominations and three wins) and Laurence Olivier (ten nominations and one win). Steven Spielberg purchased Davis’s Oscars for Dangerous (1935) and Jezebel (1938) when they were offered for auction for $207,500 and $578,000, respectively, and returned them to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

  • 1934: Davis’s performance in Of Human Bondage (1934) was widely acclaimed and when she was not nominated for an Academy Award, several influential people mounted a campaign to have her name included. The Academy relaxed its rules for that year only to allow for the consideration of any performer nominated in a write-in vote; therefore, any performance of the year was technically eligible for consideration. Given the well-publicized hoopla, some sources still consider this as a nomination for Davis; however, the Academy does not officially record this as a nomination.[18]
  • 1935: Won for Dangerous
  • 1938: Won for Jezebel
  • 1939: Nominated for Dark Victory
  • 1940: Nominated for The Letter
  • 1941: Nominated for The Little Foxes
  • 1942: Nominated for Now, Voyager
  • 1944: Nominated for Mr. Skeffington
  • 1950: Nominated for All About Eve
  • 1952: Nominated for The Star
  • 1962: Nominated for What Ever Happened to Baby Jane?

For more on Bette Davis see here


No they’re not?… yes they are!…Jebus will they or won’t they be reunited back on the UK X Factor Big Screen, I mean Panel –  Oi Vey!

Cheryl-Cole-and-Simon-Cowell-3103350Cheryl Cole is refusing to commit to a return to The X Factor – because her previous stint as a judge holds so many painful memories. The singer has held informal talks with Simon Cowell about returning for the new series later this year. But Cheryl, 30, is stalling on a decision – saying her bitter divorce from Ashley Cole and contracting the killer disease malaria both happened while she worked on the ITV hit. A source close to Cheryl said: “She’s not sure whether taking the job is the right thing. Cheryl associates her last season there with a really hard time in her life and that’s her biggest mental hurdle. “It was when she was going through her divorce and had just had malaria. Although she loves the show, that season was really intense and hard work with her finalists. “Cheryl is in a good place – the best she’s ever been. Simon is after her but she’s having to do some real soul-searching to see if she really wants to throw herself back into the ­spotlight.” Cheryl filed for divorce from ­footballer Ashley in May 2010 after he was exposed for cheating on her. Just two months later she was hospitalised and treated for malaria after a holiday with then-boyfriend Derek Hough in Africa. She missed some of the auditions for the show but returned for the start of the series in August. In May 2011, she was humiliated after being sacked from the American version just three weeks after joining as judge.

National Television Awards 2011 - Show - LondonIt was rumoured her Geordie accent was to blame, while other reports suggested Simon was under pressure to axe her after she failed to impress US show bosses with her “lack of presence”. Cheryl took the show’s producer, Blue Orbit, to court and won an undisclosed settlement, believed to be in the region of £1.4million. Her relationship with Simon also soured, with her reportedly texting him to say: “I hate you. I understand you’re a ­businessman and what I’ve learnt from this is ­business means more to you than our ­friendship.”

Cheryl has a few months to make her decision with contracts not being finalised until May. Friends also said the Fight For This Love star is keen to focus on her singing and is concerned the show will get in the way. Simon has been vocal about his bid to win her back. He said: “She was a really, really good judge. I mean, she took what she did ­seriously.

cheryl and simonShe used to phone me almost every night – one, two, three o’clock in the morning, talking about songs and what she should be doing. “That’s the kind of judge you want to be working with because they really care.” A source close to Simon said yesterday: “Talks are ongoing with Cheryl. Simon really wants her to come back and what Simon wants, he normally gets.” Rita Ora, 23, and Dannii Minogue, 42, are rumoured to be possible judges for the next series after Gary Barlow, 43, and Sharon Osbourne, 61, stepped down. Louis Walsh, 61, is likely to return but Nicole Scherzinger, 35, has also hinted she may be out. The only confirmed celebrity is Simon, 54, who has signed up for a three-year X Factor/Britain’s Got Talent deal worth an estimated £25 million. Cheryl’s pal said: “This is not about the salary. This is about Cheryl making the right choice for her and her happiness.”  see more here..



They say ‘Success’ is the sweetest revenge of all… we tend to agree.


courteney cox1Courteney Cox has opened up about her failed marriage to actor David Arquette. Friends actress Courteney revealed that she still loves her ex-husband – with whom she shares nine-year-old daughter Coco – saying that she wanted David to be happy without her. “When you love someone, you want them to be happy, even if it’s not with you,” revealed the friends actress in an interview with the February edition of More magazine. “In divorce you always have regrets,” the Dirt actress added. “We were married for a long time, so it’s not like we didn’t try.” The celebrity couple married in 1999 after meeting on the set of the Scream films, but separated in 2010 before finalising their divorce in 2013. Speaking about how the couple’s daughter was dealing with their divorce Jennifer Aniston’s BFF said: “Obviously, kids always want their parents to be together, but as divorces go, this is the best one we could provide.” Courteney and David remain close with the Cougar Town actress recently revealing the sex of her ex-husband’s new baby with his girlfriend Christina McLarty.  The 49-year-old Cougar Town star told Ellen DeGeneres on her talk show: “They’re going to have a baby boy. I hope I’m allowed to say that.” Bit late if you weren’t! Entertainment Tonight host Christina has been tight-lipped about her first pregnancy to date but is rumoured to be preparing to give birth in March. David, whose ex girlfriend Jasmine Waltz has been causing a smutty ruckus in the Celebrity Big Brother house, hailed Christina to be the love of his life last October. He said: “I’m madly in love with her and she’s the love of my life. Absolutely.” Courteney is now dating Snow Patrol’s Johnny McDaid as the Mirror recently revealed after they attended Jennifer Aniston’s holiday party together. An insider also recently said: “Although they’re divorced, Courteney will never stop caring about David – especially now that he’s going to give Coco a half-sibling … David and Courteney see each other nearly every day as their producing business thrives.” [Courtesy Irish Mirror]

Psychic or what?


Kate Moss at 40


Happy Birthday Kate

How to keep young Madonna at 55


The Big winners at this year’s UK National Television Awards, flying the flag for Ireland (And Scotland to a degree, as it’s a BBC Scotland Production) was of course Brendan O’Carroll and the cast of the massive-sitcom-success story Mrs Brown’s Boys. Not only an NTA winner but also ‘The’ most watched television show across all stations in Ireland and The UK during the festive season.  So When the delicious Chris Noth (Sex And The City) announced the winners….  here’s how Brendan and the team reacted….  and rightly so… well done guys.


The Academy Award winner, admitted she recently did a little search on the web that gave her a bit of insight.

sandra-bullock-1092“So, I Googled myself and read the comments section, thinking I could get some tidbits of what people really think of me,” Bullock said while accepting her actress of the year honor for the film Gravity at the Palm Springs International Film Festival’s opening night on Saturday. “No human being should ever read the comments sections or ever Google one’s self at any time.”  But the star, who said she learned “a lot about myself,” opened up about her discoveries – good and bad. “Some things I was very well aware of,” she said. ” ‘Sandra Bullock is over 40’ came up a lot. I know that. ‘Sandra Bullock’s way past 40.’ Yeah, I know that, too … ‘There’s absolutely nothing special about her acting. She’s not particularly attractive, I can’t stand her, she’s mediocre. She’s over 40.’ And apparently Julia [Roberts] … You and I are in a dispute over George Clooney. We talked about this, right? It’s shared custody and we’re both fine with it.” Going off of that, Bullock – who hasn’t publicly dated anyone since her divorce from cheating ex-husband Jesse James – also touched on relationship rumors. “[There were] lots and lots of comments about who I’ve dated. Some are true and some I’ll never admit to,” she said.  One person she didn’t necessarily date, but revealed she had a moment – of sorts – with? A fellow awards season regular.  “I was reminded I made out with Meryl Streep,” Bullock revealed of her online dirt. “Off-screen, not necessarily her choice. I kind of took her by surprise.”  But behind all the jokes and silly revelations, the actress, most importantly, acknowledged: “Some commenters thought I had good hair and good teeth. And I made some young girls and some over 40 girls laugh with some chick flicks. I sparked with Betty White and I’ve flown into space. I’ve had a pretty good life and a pretty good career.” [Courtesy of People Magazine]


blog compo october giveawayIt could not be easier… celebrating our brand new Orchid Jewels website all you have to do is to go to our Facebook page .. click like… share it and be in with a chance to win this stunning piece from our latest collection. Don’t forget to follow us on twitter too… retweets count!

(t&c’s apply)

Click here for Facebook Business page... Like It... Share it...Win the Necklace (draw)

Click here for Facebook Business page… Like It… Share it…Win the Necklace (draw)


The headlines were just too tempting for this blogger to resist. The whole story itself is just soooooo boring…. Young brat (15) makes squillions via lucky break and little talent…image of an angel… doesn’t smoke.. doesn’t drink –  yeah right?… collects squillions of ‘Belieber’ Fans….now he’s ‘like’ 20…. he’s leading the life of a forty year old dead beat –  his former housekeeper spills the beans here.  To be honest…it’s nothing a good old slap to the back of the head wouldn’t sort.





thinking cat on dogs headWell that just about rounds up the big stories that grabbed our attention in January 2014…and while I’ve got my thinking cap on, just to let you know, I’ve all sorts of beautiful new jewellery designs ready to launch for our Spring Collection. Suffice to say, with the new clients we signed up this month and the nine we’ll be announcing in due course, it truly feels like we’ve won an Oscar ourselves. We are so looking forward to 2014 and all the hope and wonderment that it brings.

Wishing each and everyone of you a most successful and prosperous 2014.

Happy Valentines Day darlings.

Martina & all the team

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