2020 promised to be a record year for the tourism industry in Galway, however sadly COVID-19 presented a significant threat not only to public health but also to business. For many in business the necessary steps taken by Governments to control the spread of COVID-19 has been a shock that could place their immediate future in serious jeopardy.
Despite all these challenges one Galway company are determined to beat the odds, The Connacht Hospitality Group is showing resilience and strength in these challenging times and has used this year as time to revaluate all of their hospitality offerings and to enhance them all with modifications designed to create more quality and more value for their patrons.
The Group acquired the Galway Bay Bay Golf resort last year and plans are afoot that will see it become a standard bearer of quality hospitality and golf within the next 12-18 months.
Over the past few months the group, owned and managed by the Fitzgerald family from Clarinbridge, with the support of fellow company director John Carmody and their experienced leadership team, have taken a range of actions to not only sustain their businesses throughout this pandemic but also to place the company in the best possible position for recovery.
The Group is a family owned business based in Galway City and comprises three hotels; The Connacht Hotel, which celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2019. The Forster Court Hotel, a stylish hotel located in the heart of Galway City. The Residence, a boutique style hotel located on Quay Street and three licenced premises; the award-winning An Púcán located on Forster Street, 1520 Bar located in Galway’s Latin Quarter and the chic HYDE Bar & Gin Parlour on Forster Street. The Connacht Hospitality Group also operate a 24-hour gym and leisure centre Active 24 Fitness & Leisure and late 2019 saw the welcome addition of the Galway Bay Golf Resort to the portfolio.
This week the Connacht Hospitality Group launched a new look Group brand that incorporates the elegant design that their businesses have become renowned for, with HYDE among the most notable as it is regularly referred to the “most stylish bar in Galway”.
January saw the full ground floor refurbishment of the group’s flagship property “The Connacht Hotel” with the design led again by company director Paul Fitzgerald. “The refurbishment of the Connacht Hotel gave the hotel the additional space to allow for safe social distancing throughout the summer months and gave us a fighting chance while still maintaining the homely welcoming feeling the hotel is known for.” says Group General Manager Wayne Neilon.
There are developments currently underway in the award winning An Púcan with equally as exciting plans for the popular 1520 Bar, to be completed in the coming weeks. These changes will see both An Púcan and 1520 adapt to the “new normal” and ensure patrons can return to both enjoyable and safe surroundings whilst adopting the sustainability policies that have become a core value of the group.
Most eagerly anticipated for the group are the plans in the coming years to full redevelop the site at Galway Bay Golf resort, into a luxury 4-star property that will compliment the already renowned Golf Course. This promises to be one of the leading hotels in the west of Ireland once completed.
“Above all else our priority as a company is to rebuild its teams, the success of the brand to date has always been attributed to our people and as we build for the future this determination is at our core,” said Group CEO Peter Fitzgerald.