Two top hotels - Fitzwilliam and Galgorm - secure prestigious industry accolades

Fitzwilliam Hotel general manager Cian Landers and its concierges celebrate the AA accolade
Fitzwilliam Hotel general manager Cian Landers and its concierges celebrate the AA accolade

TWO of the north's best-known hotels are celebrating securing prestigious industry accolades from the AA.

Belfast's Fitzwilliam Hotel was named AA Hotel of the Year Northern Ireland while the Galgorm Spa & Golf Resort has secured the AA Four Red Star Award.

Cian Landers, general manager at the Fitzwilliam, said: “This is a massive achievement and we are truly honoured to have been won the AA’s ultimate accolade for hotels in the UK."

The honour goes to hotels that are recognised as being outstanding examples in their market. From the small family-run hotel to the most ambitious commercial ventures, hotels of every size and style are potential winners.

“This means so much to us and is testament to the efforts of the fantastic team we have here at the Fitzwilliam Hotel, and the continuous effort to ensure we go above and beyond in creating a special experience for all our guests,” Mr Landers added.

“I'm extremely proud of our entire team whose hard work has made this possible. I cannot thank our wonderful management and staff, directors and loyal customers enough for their continued support over the last decade.”

The five-star Fitzwilliam Hotel (, with 146 design-led guest rooms, opened its doors 10 years ago in the heart of Belfast city centre, next door to The Grand Opera house on Great Victoria Street.

The latest phase of the Fitzwilliam's investment saw the addition of a further 16 luxury bedrooms, a new penthouse suite and exceptional meeting rooms. The penthouse on the ninth floor is a stand-out space, representing the pinnacle of luxury accommodation with panoramic views over the city, a private wrap-around roof terrace and baby grand piano.

Cian said: “The continuous investment in the hotel and its people over the last number of years has been recognised by this award and motivates us to continue the journey of perfecting the guest experience at the Fitzwilliam Belfast.”

Meanwhile the Galgorm received its accolade at a glittering ceremony at Grosvenor House in London, recognised for its excellent levels of quality throughout the resort and outstanding levels of hospitality and service.

Each year, AA inspectors select the best hotels within each star rating, representing the very best in the British Isles and are known as ‘Inspectors’ Choice’ hotels.

Galgorm Spa & Golf Resort ( is the only Northern Irish hotel to receive the prestigious accolade, which complements its existing three AA Rosettes award for culinary excellence at fine-dining restaurant, the River Room.

Led by head chef Chris Rees, the River Room is one of only four establishments in Northern Ireland to hold such a coveted title and is awarded to outstanding restaurants that ‘demand recognition well beyond their local area’, and that demonstrate excellence in timing, seasoning and judgment of flavour combinations, as well as boasting a select wine list.

Colin Johnston, managing director of the Galgorm resort, said: “We are delighted to accept this award which is testament to the continual hard work and dedication of our fantastic staff.

“Their commitment to delivering excellence across all our offerings is unparalleled, from luxury accommodation, to famous golfing greens, a world-renowned spa offering and an award-winning fine dining restaurant.”