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Cork City's Pub Trade Set To Boom Post-COVID; Dublin's Wellington Pub Sold

Published on Sep 23 2021 1:00 PM in Pub/Bar/Nightclub tagged: Cork / Moody's / COVID-19 / Pub Trade / Bodhrán pub / Guinness Cork Jazz Festival / McLaughlins Pet and Garden / Pier Head Bar / Páirc Uí Chaoimh / Live at the Marquee / The Wellington

Cork City's Pub Trade Set To Boom Post-COVID; Dublin's Wellington Pub Sold

As reported in The Irish Examiner, after 18 months of stagnation, the pub trade in Cork City is showing some positive uplift, with a number of new venues on the way in both the city centre and the suburbs.

Publican Benny McCabe

Work is reportedly well underway to return the Pavilion "Pav" bar and nightclub to its glory days, according to Benny McCabe, who bought the premises with his brother Leo for €1.3 million, although it will not be open in time for the Guinness Cork Jazz Festival next month, as originally planned. A November opening is now more likely, McCabe reportedly said.

He is reportedly in the process of adding another pub venue to the 15 or so pubs he already owns, having lodged a planning application in June with Cork City Council for permission to convert the former USIT tourist office at 66 and 67 Oliver Plunkett St into a licensed premises.

McCabe reportedly said that it is still in the planning process as the council has requested further information.

The bar will take in part of Casey Furniture store on Grafton Mall.

McCabe reportedly said that the Pav project is "going swimmingly" and the new bar "will surprise people".

On Maylor Street, a 300-year-old warehouse that survived the Black and Tans has been brought back to life by stone masonry and restoration specialists, the Youghal-based Ahern Brothers, on behalf of clients James and Maria Carney.

Carney reportedly said that while they have planning permission for a bar, they have not yet decided if it is the route they will pursue, that it will depend on economic conditions.

The couple are also behind restoration of a house on North Mall; they have a keen interest in old buildings.

Carney reportedly said that the old warehouse, at 6 Maylor Street, was a shell when they bought it.

Kieren Ahern reportedly said that they discovered extensive fire damage when working on it, which they reckon dates to the Burning of Cork in December of 1920. They spent months restoring it, literally brick by brick.

Further out of town, on Lower Glanmire Road, the owners of McLaughlins Pet and Garden store have reportedly applied for planning permission for change of use - from retail to hospitality - to include a bar, café, and periodic live entertainment space.

The application reportedly went to City Council on August 23 and a decision is reportedly due October 18.

Directly across from McLaughlins, who have centralised their business in Bandon, is a new tapas bar, Moodys, at the end of Summerhill North.

It opened during the pandemic, as did the city's first microsleeper hotel, REZz, on nearby MacCurtain Street, where hospitality has been very much on the up in recent years.

Further out of town, the owners of Goldbergs, Rory O'Leary and Liam Barry, have taken out a long-term lease on the Pier Head Bar, right in the middle of Blackrock Village. Barry said reportedly said that they will close shortly for refurbishment.

He reportedly said, "It's an exciting new venture for us and we will be undertaking a bit of refurbishment. We are planning to get into food in a big way and we have a fabulous Mexican chef, Miguel Cestelo. Given the location [village end of the Marina], we will have some nice seafood offerings and high-end, free menu tasters at the weekends.

"We're also planning our own brand of Pier Head coffee, and breakfast pastries and scones."

Negotiations are continuing in relation to the upstairs section of the premises, which was formerly a Chinese restaurant.

Barry reportedly said that Goldbergs will be reopening fully as a pub on October 22, that during Covid they concentrated on food and takeaways.

He reportedly said that they are positive about their new venue in Blackrock Village, having been "chasing it for five years" as Blackrock had "an awful lot to offer" - with live music events resuming in Páirc Uí Chaoimh next year, including Bruce Springsteen and Ed Sheeran, and the GAA looking to a full match schedule, as well as Live at the Marquee, pubs in Blackrock should do very well.

Barry, who also owns the Bodhrán pub on Oliver Plunkett St, reportedly expressed disappointment that the city still does not have an Event Centre, reportedly saying that he believed that the former Beamish & Crawford site was never the right location and that if Albert Quay had been chosen instead, as proposed by O'Callaghan Properties (OCP), it would now be up and running.

OCP had proposed a 5,000-person adaptable event centre, with a 260-bed hotel and 500 basement car-parking spaces.

The Wellington Pub Of Baggot Street Bridge, Dublin 4, Sold

In other Irish pub news, as reported by The Irish Independent, a new pub group called Dunmore and headed up by John Given has purchased The Wellington pub of Baggot Street Bridge, Dublin 4.

The Wellington was reportedly purchased for approximately €2.3 million in a deal that was brokered by John Ryan of selling agents Bagnall Doyle MacMahon.

The Wellington, which is located on the corner with Mespil Road, was reportedly sold by John and Monica Gibney.

© 2021 Hospitality Ireland – your source for the latest industry news. Article by Conor Farrelly. Click subscribe to sign up for the Hospitality Ireland print edition.

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