Clontarf Baths to open next week... with coddle pizzas on the menu
The 132-year-old Clontarf Seawater Baths in Dublin will open to the public next week following the granting of a full seven-day publican's licence.
Publican and hotelier David Cullen was in court to hear the ruling that will see the finalisation of his 25-year-long dream to re-open the baths development, consisting of an open seawater swimming pool, bar and restaurants, which will be managed by his son David.
Mr Cullen, of Seafield Hotel, Ballymoney, Gorey, Co Wexford, owns the Clontarf Baths and Assembly Rooms company and has spent €2.4m in a major redevelopment scheme.
He told his barrister Dorothy Collins that he had obtained a declaratory order from the court last year guaranteeing him a seven-day licence on the basis the development was completed in accordance with planning permission, which had been carried out to the satisfaction of the planning authorities, the fire department and gardai.
Ms Collins said the company had recruited 33 staff, who were currently undergoing on-site training in anticipation of next week's opening.
The court had earlier been told that the company had completely reconstructed and refurbished the open-air seawater baths that had existed on the site since 1886 and which would use filtered water from Dublin Bay.
Ms Collins said the new development provided a fully modernised swimming pool for members of the public and would serve all of Dublin and even parts of Co Wicklow as the Dart ran very close to it.
Part of the application included the presentation of a menu for the two restaurants, which include seaweed-seasoned cocktails and Dublin coddle pizzas.
The main restaurant can provide covers for 160, with a further 90 seats available on a weather-proofed outside terrace, both with panoramic views of Dublin Bay.
In order for a new development to be granted a pub licence, the existing one has to be extinguished and Mr Cullen bought out the licence formerly attached to Browns Bar on the Naas Road for €60,000.