It may seem like an unusual place for a Hollywood A-lister to spend the lockdown, but Matt Damon is currently spending the travel-restricted period caused by COVID-19 in an attractive Irish village by the sea.

Dalkey in south Dublin with Martello Tower visible in the background
Matt Damon is staying with his family in Dalkey © Bruce B. Clarke via Getty Images

The actor was in Dublin in the first place to shoot scenes for historical drama-thriller, “The Last Duel,” in which he plays protagonist Jean de Carrouges. On March 13, Disney announced that the studio had to delay the Ridley Scott-directed shoot indefinitely in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. Matt and his family have remained in Dublin, where people have been ordered to stay at home and are only allowed to go for exercise within 2km of their residences.

Matt Damon and Luciana Barroso at an awards ceremony
Matt Damon and Luciana Barroso are staying in Dublin with their children © Randall Michelson/Getty Images for Film Independent

The Oscar-winner is staying in the pretty coastal village of Dalkey with his wife Luciana Barroso and four children Alexia, Isabella, Gia and Stella. Dalkey is one of the most exclusive areas of Dublin, and the pretty suburban village by the sea is home to U2’s Bono and music star Enya. Matt is reportedly staying at Ischia, the exclusive home owned by racing star, Eddie Irvine. It’s normally available to rent through Airbnb for €7000 ($7596) per week, and has an outdoor pool, cinema room, snooker and games room, and an oversized hot tub offering views across Dublin Bay.

Matt Damon with Raouf Djeffal, owner of Ouzo's restaurant
Matt Damon with Raouf Djeffal, owner of Ouzos restaurant © Raouf Djeffal

Locals have been enjoying having the Oscar-winner in their midst, and he was spotted having a pint in Finnegan’s pub prior to the lockdown and jogging around the town.

Coliemore Harbour
Coliemore Harbour at sunset in Dalkey Island © Lola Gavin / Getty Images

He enjoyed lunch with his family at The Corner Note Café, where he posed for a photo with owner Mary Caviston. "Matt and his family were very polite, pleasant and lovely-mannered," Mary tells Lonely Planet. "It was a pleasure to serve them."

Matt Damon with Mary Caviston, owner of The Corner Note Café
Matt Damon with Mary Caviston, owner of The Corner Note Café © Mary Caviston

The star also had a photo taken with owner and executive chef Raouff Djeffal while having a meal in Ouzos steak and seafood restaurant. Aside from that, he has been keeping a fairly low profile, although an image of him emerging from the sea holding a plastic SuperValu supermarket bag, apparently containing his swimming trunks, generated a frisson on local social media.

“The Last Duel,” also stars Ben Affleck, Adam Driver and Jodie Comer, but Matt appears to be the only one who stayed in Dublin rather than returning to his Brooklyn penthouse once coronavirus measures were announced.

Keep up to date with Lonely Planet's latest travel-related COVID-19 news here.

You might also like:

Quarantined Tom Hanks causes a public debate in Australia over his Vegemite use

The celebrities keeping us entertained during lockdown

Explore related stories


Where to go in 2024: when to visit our Best in Travel winners

Oct 25, 2023 • 19 min read