Lucy White, Irish Independent
Sun 29 Oct 2023 at 02:30

Park Hotel Kenmare hotelier and TV personality Francis Brennan is also author of several non-fiction books. His latest, Age is Just a Number, is published by Gill and is out now. He tells us what is currently lighting up his cultural life.

BOOK Hotel du Lac

The first thing I do every morning is read the paper from cover to cover, and thus the day begins. I love reading and re-reading the classics and am always ploughing through novels and autobiographies – you can’t beat the power of words.

I recently read Anita Brookner’s Hotel du Lac again, and the rich descriptions and language had me enthralled. I’m not a fan of using a Kindle or of reading online content. I get tired quickly when reading online – but I never tire with a book in my hand.

FILM Barbenheimer

I could live in the cinema – and as soon as a movie is released I have to go. I thoroughly enjoyed the Barbie and Oppenheimer craze.

On TV, I particularly liked the BBC’s Claridge’s documentary, The Mayfair Hotel Megabuild. Filmed over six years, it follows work to dig out a five-storey basement, add four new floors and a penthouse. The main hotel stayed open, guests were not interrupted, and the workforce were mainly Irish. I found it fascinating, and I loved the gorgeous interiors.

RADIO: John Creedon

Music is my solace – my favourite artists at the moment include Celine Dion, Harry Styles and Usher. And I think nothing beats radio in Ireland. Sunday Miscellany on RTÉ Radio 1 is a favourite, and when I’m driving, John Creedon always manages to play my favourite tunes. I could listen to him all day.

I also enjoy podcasts, though it took me a while to be converted. I have been especially enjoying Karl Henry’s podcast Real Health (though I could be biased, as I was recently featured as a guest).​

THEATRE: The Hangmen

I love the theatre and go quite regularly in Dublin and London. I admire the writing of Martin McDonagh greatly and look forward to seeing The Hangmen in the Gaiety soon. [At the time of writing] the gig I’m looking forward to next is U2 in Las Vegas. I’m dying to experience the technology and staging of the Sphere.