Fancy a change of scene – and ca­reer – on the Wild At­lantic Way

The Irish Times - Thursday - Property - - Feature - FRANCES O’ROURKE 1.2 mil­lion

De­scrip­tion: Home and a guest­house-cum-res­tau­rant on Wild At­lantic Way Agent: DNG WH Giles The front gar­den of a prop­erty on the Wild At­lantic Way is the At­lantic Ocean, the back gar­den is Mount Bran­don, says Shee­lagh Gor­man, who with her hus­band Vin­cent owns Clifftop House, a four-star guest­house-cum-res­tau­rant in Bal­ly­david, Din­gle, Co Kerry.

The land on which the cou­ple built their home and busi­ness in 1980 was a wed­ding present from Vin­cent’s par­ents. Shee­lagh, from Dublin, and Ker­ry­man Vin­cent started first a cafe, then a 40-seater res­tau­rant in 1988.

They had a three-room guest­house up to 2000, when they ex­panded, build­ing nine en suite g u e s t r o o ms and a four-bed­room apart­ment for them­selves and their three chil­dren.

Go­ing con­cern

Now they’re sell­ing Clifftop as a go­ing con­cern – new own­ers might want to keep it as a guest­house, run it as a wed­ding venue, cook­ery school or other kind of small busi­ness – or even use it sim­ply as a large fam­ily home, sug­gest agents DNG WH Giles.

At 354sq m (3,810sq ft), the house isn’t, after all, much big­ger than some large Dublin houses.

DNG WH Giles is seek­ing ¤1.2 mil­lion for Clifftop House, the guest­house on 2.93 acres with ex­ten­sive sea views next to Smer­wick Har­bour. The award-win­ning guest­house/res­tau­rant is 14km from Din­gle town. Awards in­clude the AA Ire­land Best Guest House Award, Ge­orgina Campbell Best Host Award and McKen­nas’ Best in Ire­land 2014.

Res­tau­rant

The guest bed­rooms in­clude six dou­ble and twin rooms and three fam­ily rooms, all en suite. The 40-seat res­tau­rant looks over the sea, has a bar and an open fire. There is also a fully-fit­ted com­mer­cial kitchen, a large re­cep­tion area and a li­brary.

Up­stairs, in the Gor­mans’ own liv­ing quar­ters, there is a kitchen, din­ingroom, lounge and four bed­rooms, one en suite.

Bal­ly­david draws vis­i­tors from all over the world and the guest­house and res­tau­rant are busy, says Shee­lagh: it’s a pop­u­lar venue for events such as fam­ily birth­days and wed­dings, for New Year’s and Valen­tine’s, as well as for tourists. Guests can in­clude peo­ple com­ing to Din­gle for RTÉ2’s Other Voices broad­casts or hill­walk­ers walk­ing the Din­gle Way – the guest­house is on the route, at the foot of Mount Bran­don.

Why sell? Shee­lagh says she turned 60 this year, and so the cou­ple de­cided to pre­pare their busi­ness for sale.

They plan to stay in the Din­gle area and she hopes to go on work­ing, “do­ing some­thing with peo­ple – I’ve been do­ing this for 38 years, and had a great jour­ney”.

Since the Wild At­lantic Way was launched, things have be­come very busy, she adds. “It would be nice to see young fresh en­ergy com­ing in and tak­ing it over.”

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