THE RIVER LEE, CORK TRANSFORMED: SUMMER 2019
Following the relaunch this Summer, The River Lee now fills the gap in the market for a stylish, social hotel in Cork. Overseen by Chairman Bernie Gallagher, The Doyle Collection design team worked with Irish designers, O’Donnell O’Neill in order to transform the property.
July 8thCork, Ireland
The relaunch is part of The Doyle Collection’s multimillion-pound investment programme that began with the redesign of sister hotels in London: The Kensington, The Marylebone and The Bloomsbury. This year, the team have turned their attention to the emerging city of Cork, which has become a world-renowned business hub and key destination for leisure travellers visiting Ireland.
The River Club Bar
The launch of The River Club brings a members club vibe to Cork’s city centre, offering a cool atmospheric place to entertain, socialise, eat and drink. The stylish waterside venue effortlessly flows across the ground floor of The River Lee hotel. Guests enter through a pergola directly into The River Club bar, boasting an impressive double-height ceiling with reclaimed wooden beams, a long mahogany bar, chevron patterned floor tiles and impressive frosted glass art-deco chandelier, all brought to life by views of the river. Here, hotel guests and members of the public alike, enjoy indulgent small plates and innovative cocktails, many of which are Irish-inspired twists on old classics – favourites include the Honeycomb Old Fashioned and the Espress O’Martini.
The River Club Terrace
This space leads onto Cork’s most ‘Instagrammable’ al fresco dining hotspot – The River Club Terrace, where tropical foliage, rich textiles, heaters and cosy throws help turn it into a urban hideaway in the heart of the city. The terrace’s design evolves with the seasons and is the ultimate venue for lazy brunches, date nights and celebratory cocktails.
The Grill Room
For serious gastronomes, the main event is The Grill Room, bringing the finest bounty of Cork’s coastline and farmlands to the city centre. The restaurant channels old-school glamour and features deep teal-panelled walls, curved cognac leather banquettes, blown-glass globe lights and playful art by American artist, Heather Chantos, specially commissioned for the space. Head chef Paul Lane sources the majority of the ingredients straight from the nearby English Market, championing Cork produce in his locally-inspired menus.
The Lobby & Cocktail Bar
As guests enter The River Lee, they pass through the redesigned lobby, now home to The Cocktail Bar, a chic, modern take on a mid-20th century bar. It is a relaxed and informal place to sample some of Cork’s rare whiskeys and indulge with the hotel’s much loved Afternoon Tea.
The Mirror Room & The Hub
The Mirror Room is the latest addition to The River Lee’s meeting and event spaces and can accommodate 110 seated and up to 200 standing. Perfect for weddings, celebrations and private dining, The Mirror Room is an elegant venue with stunning Italian wall tapestries, mirrored wall panelling with sage green banquettes, marble topped tables and mid-century German chandeliers. The hotel is also home to The Hub, a dedicated business floor made up of eight flexible private hire rooms which can accommodate anywhere from five to 110 people. The Hub offers some of the most sought-after meeting and event spaces in Cork, hosting everything from corporate board meetings to creative brainstorms, thanks to the latest conferencing equipment and inspiring breakout spaces featuring bars, table tennis tables and a private outdoor terrace.
Accessed via a glass lift with panoramic views of the river, the city skyline and rolling hills beyond, the rooms at The River Lee have been refreshed and offer simple stylish comfort. The rooms reflect the flair of the ground floor, with soothing tones, marble table tops, geometric prints, textured throws, underfloor heating and impressive 55 inch smart TVs. The floor to ceiling windows are another highlight, allowing natural light to flood in.
The Emerging City of Cork
Growth and investment in Cork has been driven from an influx of global brands, predominantly within the burgeoning tech industry, moving into the city over the last 25 years. Apple opened its European HQ last year and the city continues to develop with over one million square feet of new office space being created in the next three years. The city is also becoming increasingly popular with leisure travellers, thanks to cultural festivals and events surrounding local history, literature, music, art and food. These include the renowned International Poetry Festival, Jazz Festival and Cork Film Festival as well as new events such as Feast Cork which celebrates young, local talent, chef and producers. This year, Cork also became home to three Michelin star restaurants including Ireland’s first Japanese Michelin starred restaurant, Inchigo Ichie, just a five minute walk from The River Lee.
Rates at The River Lee start from €180 per night