New tourist attraction in Dublin to create 50 new jobs

Investment of €5m to create the Vaults in the John’s Lane area, which opens in July

Former broadcaster Paul Blanchfield and creative director Gerald Heffernan who are running the attraction.

A new tourist attraction in Dublin city centre is to create 50 new jobs following a €5 million investment.

The attraction, called the Vaults, will be located in the John’s Lane area of Thomas St and opens in July.

The €5 million is being spent on converting the old Augustinian St John’s National School into a series of theatrical sets with live actor-led performances.

The initiative is being developed by Frontier Entertainment, which is driven by former broadcaster Paul Blanchfield and producer Gerald Heffernan with the creative involvement of playwright Peter Sheridan.


“The show consists of thrilling special effects, dark humour, moments of pure fun and lots of audience participation,” said Frontier Entertainment.

Just over half the jobs will be made up of actors, making the attraction the Republic’s largest employer of full-time performing artists.

The remaining jobs will focus on front of house, food and beverage, retail sales and merchandising assistants, technical specialists, and makeup and wardrobe specialists.

The Vaults will offer up to 30 shows per day depicting scenes and characters from 800 years of Irish history. Each scene is played in a 360-degree theatrical set dressed with props, a range of lighting, and sound and special effects.

Enjoyable and stimulating

Frontier Entertainment chief executive Paul Blanchfield said the aim was to “quickly become the number one thing to do in Dublin with a theatrical attraction”.

“Our research shows people want better experiences, more involvement and the Vaults entertainment model makes this happen in a big way,” he said.

“You will have a wonderful time with your friends and family at the Vaults and in an increasingly distracted mobile device driven world where adults want a more experiential, enjoyable and stimulating escapist experience, we’ve built it to do just that.

“We’ve put together a team of highly skilled professionals in staging and set design to create for guests a stunning walk through journey of real and imagined events in Irish history with a twist.

“We are in a prime location to add to Dublin’s €2 billion tourism and leisure offering where over 1.7 million adults and families attended arts related events last year.”

Mr Blanchfield said the business was based on “rethinking what culturally curious domestic and overseas guests are searching for and receive from Dublin’s current paid attractions”.

“Three years ago, we identified a significant competitive gap in the current menu which we are now about to successfully address,” he said.

Colin Gleeson

Colin Gleeson

Colin Gleeson is an Irish Times reporter