O'Brien Re-Opens Ballynahinch

Denis O’Brien has reopened the historic Ballynahinch Castle in Connemara.

The four-star hotel was taken over by Mr O’Brien and his wife, Catherine last year and a major revamp has just been completed.

The legendary Grace O’Malley, or Gráinne Mhaol, married into the Ballynahinch estate through her union with Donal O’Flaherty of the dominant O’Flaherty clan in 1546.

The castle itself was built in the 18th century for the Martin family, where Richard Martin earned the name ‘Humanity Dick’ as a result of founding the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

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Arklow Bay Sold

Arklow Bay Hotel in Co. Wicklow has been sold by receivers, for an undisclosed sum, to the local Hudson family which operates a concrete business.

Dalata will operate the 92 bedroom hotel and the 140 staff will be retained.


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Four Star Temple Gate

The family owned Temple Gate Hotel, located on The Square in Ennis , is delighted to announce the hotel has been awarded four star classification by Fáilte Ireland.

Opened in 1996 and just a short stroll from the centre of town, the Temple Gate Hotel is complete with the AA Rosette awarded Legends restaurant as well as Preacher’s Bar as well 70 bedrooms including Executive Rooms and Junior Suites, each of which offer complimentary Wi-Fi. Additionally, the Temple Gate Hotel offers meeting rooms for corporate guests as well as areas such as The Library or Lobby which are perfect for relaxing with a speciality tea or coffee and homemade pastries.

Managing Director Paul Madden, is delighted with the recent reclassification, saying: “We have dedicated ourselves over the last few years to bring the hotel to a higher standard for our guests with room refurbishments and significant investment. It is fantastic to have our efforts recognised by Fáilte Ireland with the four stars for the Temple Gate Hotel, and we look forward to giving our future visitors a four star welcome.”


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Funding for 'Hot Hotels'

An Irish hotel-booking start-up has received $1m (€730,000) in funding to expand further into European and South American markets.

Hot Hotels allows people to make same-day hotel bookings at a discount from their smartphone. The company has almost 4,000 hotels signed up to its service and typically offers late-booking discounts of up to 50pc.

The funding comes from an assortment of private investors, accelerator funds and Axon Partners, which specialises in funding businesses in emerging markets such as India and South America.

The company also has plans to increase its customer base in the European mobile-only, same-day hotel booking market.

Hot Hotels operates in 43 countries and 257 cities in Europe, Africa, Asia, Latin America and Israel. The company was founded in January 2012 by Conor O'Connor, Adelaida Muriel, Joe Haslam and Jose Fernandez.



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Green Light for Merrion

Dublin's  Merrion Hotel  has been given the green light for a major extension to the property by An Bord Pleanala.

The hotel's plans were delayed after a florist objected because he feared the location of a fire door that's part of the new development could put him out of business.

The owner of the five-star hotel – Landmark Investment – intends to demolish a building on Lower Baggot Street, just around the corner from its main entrance. It will replace the building with an extension to the hotel that will include three storeys of accommodation.

The Merrion also intends to create a new restaurant in the hotel and extend the two-star Michelin Patrick Guilbaud restaurant, which leases premises in the property.

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