Tracey O’Malley and Nigel Smyth

1 September 2018
Connemara Sands Hotel

Photography by Aidan Kelly & Ball and Wolf


When Nigel and Tracey started organising their wedding celebrations, they chose the wonderful Connemara Sands Hotel to host the occasion. Tracey’s family hails from Connemara, with her father from Mannin and her mum from Sky Road, Clifden. Nigel is from Greystones in County Wicklow, so his friends and family travelled west to participate in the gathering.

Connemara Sands is a family-run hotel located on the shores of Mannin Bay. The wedding ceremony took place on the beach adjoining the property, and the reception was held on the hotel’s grounds in a tepee supplied by MagnaKata. The proprietors of the hotel, Dean and Kathy, alongside the events manager, Bridget, were exceptionally professional and caring, and ensured that Nigel and Tracey’s vision became a reality. Their attention to detail and commitment to excellence were apparent throughout the entire event.

Several features of the wedding celebration included involvement from the couple’s family members. Flowers for the bridal party were provided by the bride’s mum (Margaret O’Malley), and a ceremony arch was made by the bride’s father and brother (Martin and Martin Jr). Tracey and her mum decorated the cake themselves, as well as provided an assortment of homemade desserts. The rings were made from the ring of Nigel’s late father, by his brother, Jason MacGabhann. The family involvement added charm and made the event truly special.

The excitement went on well into the night, and fireworks finished off a wonderful day of celebration with family and friends on the shores of the Wild Atlantic Way.



Celebrant: Patrick Mangan, Galway
Wedding Rings: Jason MacGabhann (groom’s brother) of Casúr Óir, Greystones (
Hairstyle: Hedz Salon, Clifden
Make-Up: Bride
Cake: Bride and her mother
Decorations: Bride with help from family and friends
Bar Set Up: All Bar None Events, Dublin
Video and Photos: Ball and Wolf, Belfast
DJ and Photographer: Aidan Kelly, Dublin
Fire Pits: Eoghan Smyth (groom’s brother) of Bushy Park Ironworks, Dublin
Pig and Lamb Spit:, Drogheda
Pre-Reception Band: The Light Runners, Cork
Ceremony Music: The Carey’s & Friends (bride’s cousins), Clifden
After-Dinner Band: Mullarkey’s House Band, Clifden
Fireworks: Jason MacGabhann and Eoghan Smyth
Bridesmaid: Lorna O’Malley
Best Man: Geoff Nordell
Tepee: MagnaKata