Longford’s tourism industry looks primed for a timely shot in the arm after planning chiefs gave the green light for a major redevelopment of Ballymahon’s Newcastle House.
The Leader has learned Longford County Council has approved plans that will see the historic 300-year-old manor house incorporate 40 guest rooms, a single storey swimming pool and gym to its grounds.
The plans, which provide for the conversion of some of the estate’s main courtyard buildings, also include plans to construct three further units containing 24 additional rooms.
A cafe, snooker room, storage facility, parking and landscaping works are likewise flagged as part of the extensive plans.
It follows submissions made last year by the estate’s owner, Hong Kong businessman Hau Yan Lee to develop a luxury hotel and spa along the shores of the River Inny.
Meanwhile, news of the proposed plans has received the seal of approval from politicians locally.
“Something like this is just ideal and couldn’t have come at a better time,” said Ballymahon based Cllr Barney Steele.
And he had this to say in relation towards enticing more overseas investors to the region.
“I wish Mr Lee all the very best and thank him for coming to Ballymahon,” he said.
“I also feel that we have to now look to the foreign market as these are the people that seem to have the revenue to invest and carry things forward.”