Page 13 - The Kerry News 2018
P. 13

 It’s a family team effort
   Aisling, Pat, Niamh, Cian and Sinead Sheahan pictured in Social 15
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Last year for the 2017 Kerry News I meet with Niamh Sheahan to hear about the ex- traordinary renovation project she had been undertaking at Reidy’s on Killarney’s Main Street.
What had for many years been a sweet shop was now turning into a bar –in fact several bars
- a coffee shop, bakery and music venue that was garner- ing attention for all kinds of celebratory events. And amidst all the work for this impressive project, Niamh was planning her wedding for summer 2018 – exactly one year from when the Reidy’s project started. Fast forward twelve months, and they have just been named Kerry Bar of the Year - Niamh is happily married and together with her four siblings they
are taking Killarney straight into the twenty-first century
at lightening speed! Eldest sister Aisling runs three Centra Stores, in New Street, Muck- ross Road and Glenbeigh and already there is a nomination for Top Fifty Convenience Stores in Ireland. She is very focussed on the current market trends of quality, convenience and healthy eating, and emphasises the popularity of the salad bars. “The days of the Breakfast Roll are gone”, she smiles, and I have to agree that this is a good sign for our health as a nation! Also some of the wonderful pastries and cakes that are handmade daily by Caroline and her team at the bakery in Reidy’s will soon become available in her Centra Stores. Aisling stresses it’s
family support that makes her workload manageable, and this is something echoed by each of her siblings.
Brother Pat meanwhile is
very involved in the bars and
in organizing live acts and entertainment in McSorley’s and Reidy’s together with their latest project Social 15. What was once Mustang Sallys has been transformed into a late night venue offering excep- tional live music, quality DJs and the best of cocktails in an upmarket atmosphere spread over several floors. Again it’s quality that is their point of difference and driving theme, with top acts and excellent service top of the menu. Pat’s younger brother Cian is also very involved in the music scene and in ensuring that the newest top bands in the country can be attracted to their venues which also includes The Porter House. It is sister Sinead
who is at the helm here and ensuring that the Porter House maintains its reputation as a top Gastro Pub. It is also open all year round and has live music seven nights a week with a full bar and cocktail menu. Very active on Social Media, Sinead ensures that people will know what is happening and when
at The Porter House, and they serve food up until 11 or 11.30 each night.
Moving out of Killarney, Sinead is also involved with An Droichead Beag in Dingle – that unmistakable bright yellow bar on the bridge, which is famous for great local tradi- tional music. It is the town’s
only late night venue in Dingle that is open seven nights a week all year round. What is striking when chatting with the siblings is that together with their impressive work ethic,
is their insistence that each of the venues has a team working there together, and success is down to everybody working
as part of that team. This is something that Niamh had stressed last year as she began building her business venue, and it is carried through to all their businesses. And with a combined work force of around four hundred full and part time people, they would be a serious employer to Killarney and surrounding areas.
And so they lead by example, as each business supports the other. For example, staff can be sent over to a sister property to help cover a shortage or emergency, and the Sheahans themselves have been known to roll up their sleeves regular- ly when needed.
They are not the kind of people to rest on their laurels, and strive to keep improving and innovating. Back to Reidy’s, and the changes and additions in the past year have been im- pressive. Ever on the lookout for something unique, Niamh has introduced a ‘Ripples’ cof- fee option, where again using digital technology you could have your own design on your cappuccino – even your own picture if that takes your fancy! The Bakery is up and running and food is served from noon to six daily with a modern twist on daytime dining.
Of course if you are hungry after 6, you can pop over to The Porter House for a meal! Not surprisingly, the venues enjoy strong local support, with some employees being with the family for decades.
    Join us this Chistmas
-The Sheahan’s-

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