Spirit of the Emirates Award

Press Release
29th November 2017

UAE Ambassador to Ireland presents Rose of Tralee International Festival with Spirit of the Emirates Award

THE Rose of Tralee International Festival has been awarded the Spirit of the Emirates, an accolade that is presented to people and organizations who are recognised for undertaking outstanding work to forge strong links with the United Arab Emirates.

The United Arab Emirates Ambassador to Ireland, His Excellency Dr Saeed Mohammad Al-Shamsi, presented the Spirit of the Emirates to the Rose of Tralee, Jennifer Byrne and the Managing Director of the Rose of Tralee International Festival, Anthony O’Gara at a gala dinner in Dublin.

The event took place during the UAE National Day Celebration on Wednesday 28th November at the Clayton Hotel, Ballsbridge, Dublin. Speaking to over 300 people, many of whom were high level diplomats, The Ambassador said: “The Rose of Tralee Festival has played a key role in bringing Ireland and the UAE closer together through its Centres in Abu Dhabi and Dubai. We are immensely proud that the UAE people are held in such high esteem by the Rose of Tralee, thanks to the links created by the Irish community and Rose Centres in our country. The Rose of Tralee is a wonderful event that deserves to be recognised and appreciated for its role in connecting nations around the world.”

Dr Al-Shamsi and his wife attended the 2017 Rose of Tralee and he has made a commitment to continue to support the Festival in the years ahead. The Managing Director of the Rose of Tralee International Festival,

Anthony O’Gara, said: “There are around five million people on this island with another 70 million Irish people in other parts of the world. The Rose of Tralee Festival was inaugurated with the intention of recognising and celebrating the International Irish community and the great benefits that they continue to bring to this small island of Ireland. It’s lovely to hear that it is appreciated and we thank his Excellency the Ambassador of the UAE for presenting us with the Spirit of the Emirates.”

The Rose of Tralee has 65 Rose Centres around in Ireland and abroad, including the UAE. The first Dubai Rose was Niamh Staunton in 1994, while the first Abu Dhabi Rose to take part in the Festival in Tralee was Sara Moffat in 2013. The search to find the 2018 Rose of Tralee is already underway and next year’s Festival will take place in Tralee, Co Kerry from Friday 17th to Tuesday 21st August 2018. Applications to be a Rose are being accepted at www.roseoftralee.ie.


For interview requests, please contact John Drummey on +353 87 7909487 or email communications@roseoftralee.ie