Manresa House, Dublin

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Manresa House
Manresa House is located in Ireland
Manresa House
Manresa House
Coordinates: 53°22′00″N 6°10′42″W / 53.366805°N 6.178265°W / 53.366805; -6.178265
Location Dollymount, Clontarf
Country Republic of Ireland
Denomination Roman Catholic
Former name(s) Granby Hall
Baymount Castle
Founded 1949 (1949)
Status Active
Functional status Retreat Centre
Heritage designation Protected Structure[1]
Deanery Fingal South East[2]
Archdiocese Dublin
Province Dublin

Manresa House is a retreat house run by the Society of Jesus next to Saint Anne's Park in the Dollymount area of Clontarf in Dublin. In the 19th century it was home to Robert Warren and Arthur Guinness and is a protected structure in Dublin.[1][3]



Manresa House is a stately home that has had a series of different owners. It was originally known as Granby Hall, and then Baymount Castle and included 17 acres of land surrounding the house. Until 1783, it was a residence of the Bishop of Down and Connor, James Traill. In 1838, it was renovated by Robert Warren. Soon after, it became the property of the Sisters of Loreto who used it as a school. In 1851, it was renovated by the sisters, because the building was damaged by a serious fire that year.[3]

In 1898, they sold it to Arthur Guinness, 1st Baron Ardilaun and moved to Balbriggan. From around 1914 to 1936, it was used as a school called Baymount Preparatory School, and it was then acquired by John T Gwynn, a descendent of John Gwynn and a member of the Gwynn family that included noted literary figures such as Stephen Gwynn and Edward Gwynn.[3]


In 1948, the Archbishop of Dublin, John Charles McQuaid asked the Jesuits to establish a spirituality centre in the Dollymount area, so they bought Baymount Castle. They renamed it Manresa House after Manresa in Catalonia, Spain, where St Ignatius of Loyola, the founder of the Jesuits had many spiritual experiences that contributed to formulation of his Spiritual Exercises.[4]

Retreat Centre[edit]

The first retreat was held there in 1949. In 1966, a new separate house to was built to accommodate more retreatants and was opened in 1967. In 1969, the Irish Jesuits moved their novitiate from Emo Court in County Laois to a building within the grounds of Manresa House. In 1977, part of the property, near the novitiate, was sold to developers to build a housing estate. In 1991, the novitiate moved to Dublin. In 2006, a new building was built on the site of the old novitiate for the Tertianship of the Jesuits in Europe.[4]


The centre offers a variety of directed retreats, seminars, and various day and evening events, as well as the 30-day retreat, from the Spiritual Exercises.[5]

In the oval meditation room are a set of windows designed by Evie Hone. They were installed in the 1990s.[6]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Record of Protected Structure from Dublin City Council retrieved 23 June 2013
  2. ^ Deaneries from Archdiocese of Dublin retrieved 23 June 2013
  3. ^ a b c History from, retrieved 22 June 2013
  4. ^ a b Manresa Spirituality Centre from, retrieved 22 June 2013
  5. ^ Manresa Retreat House from Sabbatical Wanderings, retrieved 22 June 2013
  6. ^ Evie Hone window in the Jesuit Manresa House in Dublin from University College Cork retrieved 22 June 2013

External links[edit]