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Smithfield Plaza

Wow, what a surprise, not only is it a beautiful warm sunny day in Dublin but I discovered a part of town that I thought I knew very well already, has grown up and blossomed while I wasn’t looking. It is now all of a sudden cool and trendy and vibrant.

Twenty years ago I bought an apartment off plan in Smithfield and at the time my solicitor thought I had rocks in my head. In fact a lot of people told me that the only things to see and do were drugs and prostitutes.

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The tourists are coming

I have to say it was a bit run down but there seemed to be a bit of history there and it was very close to the centre of town. Ten minutes walk to O’Connell Street. This was the start of the ‘Celtic Tiger’ and a lot of changes were afoot. However most things were happening in other parts of town and Smithfield was being left behind and then came the crash.

Today though is another matter and it’s all change. New and trendy places are popping up all over the place. Along with great places that were already well established there like the Cobblestone bar for real Trad Irish music, KishFish for takeaway fresh fish, Little Italy for all your Italian goodies. Collins Barracks, always a very interesting display in Decorative Arts and History.

And then there is the Lighthouse Cinema, playing a little less commercial movies and Fresh supermarket, although a little more expensive, but good quality. There is the multi award winning Brown Bag Movie Company offices. Frank Ryan’s Bar and the Dice Bar are great fun at any time of the day. Of course the Jameson Whiskey Distillery museum and right next to that in the courtyard is the fabulous Jo Burger where you can get a beautiful craft beer to go along with your scrumptious burger and chips. Christophes restaurant is not bad either.

The Dice Bar
The Dice Bar

In fact there are too many places to list and then there is the new Grange Gorman university campus with it’s very own new LUAS stop. Soon there will be hundreds of students mingling with the ever increasing number of tourists.

You better get down there quick before the place is overrun.

Be sure to watch this video slideshow of all the cool places and sights from Imma to Heuston Station and on past Guinness and Collins Barracks Museum to Smithfield….


  1. Ludmila Korol

    Good writing Paul!

    1. pehowden

      Did you watch the video?

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