Casino Marino is located off the Malahide Road in Dublin City. This interesting building is regarded as one of the finest neoclassical buildings in Europe and is also one of the most surprising. It was designed by Sir William Chambers as a pleasure home for James Caulfield, 1st Earl of Charlemont in 1775.  Athough casino means ‘small house’, this one, with it’s clever use of perspective, has 16 finely decorated rooms within it including a zodiac room. Other interesting features are the chimneys, which are disguised as urns and the columns, filter rain water down inside them using metal chains which was a Chinese invention that James Caulfield saw on his travels. The mosaic floors are made from different types of wood from rare trees found in Africa and South America some of which are extinct now. The Casino was also used by Michael Collins during the War of Independence as a hideout because it had a secret tunnel connecting it to the coast. This one’s a joy to visit. (R)