New £14m Galgorm extension could create 100 new jobs

Plans have been submitted for a new multi-million pound extension at the award-winning Galgorm Resort & Spa

THE luxury Galgorm Resort & Spa has announced plans for a new £14 million extension, which could create 100 new jobs.

The Irish News can reveal that the popular Ballymena hotel submitted proposals for the extension last week which, if approved, could add an additional 64 bedrooms.

If the new plans come to fruition it would bring the total investment at Galgorm to £50 million over the past 10 years.

Plans for the next phase include 64 new bedrooms, an exclusive roof top spa, additional external spa garden and executive lounge linking to the existing hotel.

According to the application the works would add almost 5,000 sq m in size to the hotel resort, bringing the total net floorspace up to 15,362 sq m. Additionally it would increase the number of rooms from 122 to 186, making it one of the largest in the north.

In addition to the new multi-million pound plans, in the last 12 months the resort has expanded its award-winning Thermal Spa Village to over three acres, adding the serenity garden along with private hot tubs. This built on the successful addition of 48 bedrooms and the luxury thermal spa facilities added in 2015.

Managing director Paul Smyth said the planning application marks the beginning of the next chapter in the success story of Galgorm and hopes the extension will cement the resort's reputation as one of the UK and Ireland's leading spa destinations.

"We feel given the current climate and with the continued positive growth in tourism figures now is the time to build on our success," Mr Smyth said.

"By further enhancing our product offering to attract the discerning traveller, we can enhance our reputation as a destination spa allowing us to compete with the very best resorts on the global stage.

"We are confident in the potential for further expansion and we are excited about the growth this could bring to Northern Ireland."

Hospitality group Tullymore House owns the Galgorm Resort along with the Fratelli group of Italian eateries.

Last year the group reported a turnover of £19 million and a pre-tax profit of £3.7 million.

The latest plans from the owners of the Galgorm come just a month on from the opening of new French-style restaurant Café Parisien in Belfast city centre. Located in the iconic Cleaver House at Donegall Place, the new restaurant represented an investment of £700,000.

Separately, the £1.5m redevelopment programme of the Holy Rosary Church on the Ormeau Road into a Fratelli's restaurant is expected to be completed next year and create more than 40 full and part-time jobs when completed, with a further 30 jobs during the construction phase.

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