Guinness Storehouse named Europe's leading attraction
The Guinness Storehouse has been named Europe's leading attraction.
The Dublin attraction edged out competition from the Eiffel Tower and the Colosseum to be named the leading tourist attraction in Europe at this weekend's World Travel Awards.
Now the man behind its success wants to see it develop into a Covent Garden-style destination.
Storehouse managing director Paul Carty spoke to the Herald about plans for expansion at the St James's Gate site.
"The big issue for us next is capacity. I think we're going to have to make it bigger and encroach into the buildings beside us," he said. "We're very fortunate that there is loads of room for expansion.
"I think we'll also dial up the food and make it more of a destination restaurant to get more people into the area," he continued.
Locals will be the target in the next round of investment at the famous brewery.
"In the medium to long term that's the plan, to expand and to create a destination for Irish people - like a mini Covent Garden."
This year, the Storehouse is on track to welcome just under 1.5m guests through its doors.
The World Travel Awards are considered the "Oscars of the travel industry", said Carty. Attractions or destination can put themselves forward for an award.
Buckingham Palace and the Acropolis in Athens were also in the running for the prestigious title that the public voted should go to the Storehouse.
"It as extraordinary to be called up on stage to accept the award - it's a huge achievement for Ireland," Mr Carty said.
The former hotelier has been at the helm of the Storehouse since the year before it opened it's doors in 2000.
He attributes the success of the tourist attraction to the staff and people's affection for the brand.
"We are also constantly re-investing and re-inventing," he added.