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Antrim's Beloved Boat House Set to Sail Again

local news Sep 21, 2023
Boat House Restaurant, Antrim - Geoffrey Moffett

An exciting new chapter in the world of culinary excellence is set to unfold as Sean and Geraldine McLaughlin, in partnership with Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council, take over the reins of the iconic Boat House Restaurant, Antrim.

Over the next 18 months, they will invest over £150K creating 20 employment opportunities. It's a mission rooted in giving back to the local community while retaining the dedicated staff members who faced job loss under previous ownership.

The Boat House, is located on the first floor at the council-owned Gateway building at Loughshore in Antrim on the shores of Lough Neagh. Sean and his team won a competitive tender to reinstate and run the much-loved local restaurant.

The McLaughlins, who’s portfolio includes the renowned Fullerton Arms in Ballintoy and award-winning Kraken Fish & Chips in Portrush, will bring their unwavering commitment to enhancing the hospitality experience at the Boat House. They will re-open the restaurant on Tuesday 10th October 2023, under the tutelage of Head Chef, Michael McGuigan, who worked for the restaurant before its untimely closure in August 2023.

This new contract will not only breathe new life into the hugely popular family restaurant but will also champion community growth with job retention and creation and plans for further expansion.

With unrivalled panoramic views of Lough Neagh, the restaurant can seat a total of 70 guests for breakfast, lunch and dinner service. The new offering will invite diners on a gastronomic journey through Northern Ireland's finest flavours. A stunning new menu is set to be launched which will showcase the very best of seafood from our local waters, meats and produce from Northern Irish farms and drinks from local breweries and beyond. The offering will be traditional and street food for the family market.

Speaking at the announcement of the new contract, Sean McLaughlin, said: “Today is a great day for the entire McLaughlin family and all our much-valued staff. We're immensely proud and excited to be able to reinstate one of the best-loved restaurants in County Antrim and beyond.

“It will be our honour to get the Boat House restaurant back to its former glory and even better, offering our guests a taste of Northern Ireland's finest foods and flavours amidst the serene beauty of Lough Neagh.

“Culinary excellence is not just about food; it's about creating unforgettable experiences coupled with our famous Northern Ireland hospitality and we will work exceptionally hard to deliver that promise.”

Mayor of Antrim and Newtownabbey, Councillor Mark Cooper said: “I’m delighted to welcome the McLaughlin family to the Borough to manage the Boat House, a unique restaurant on the shores of Lough Neagh.

“Their experience as successful restaurant operators will make this very popular visitor attraction even more appealing and will, no doubt, bring new visitors to the Borough. The Council looks forward to working with Sean and Geraldine and I would wish them every success with this high-profile new venture.”

The Boat House Restaurant, will re-open to the public on Tuesday the 10th of October 2023.

Visit The Boat House, Antrim social media for upcoming booking details. For job opportunities for previous and new employees, please email your CV to:  [email protected]

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