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'There comes a time you need to put your own stamp on things' - This Working Life

Padraig McGillicuddy, proprietor, Ballygarry House hotel and spa, Co Kerry. In conversation with Mary McCarthy

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Balanced life: Ballygarry House owner Padraig McGillicuddy uses trekking to relieve stress

Balanced life: Ballygarry House owner Padraig McGillicuddy uses trekking to relieve stress

Balanced life: Ballygarry House owner Padraig McGillicuddy uses trekking to relieve stress

Building the dream: In 1957, my grandfather Gene was out for a walk and came across the derelict Ballygarry House. He was a builder and astutely spotted the potential for a hotel.

In 1958, the Manhattan Hotel opened. My father joined as general manager in 1968 and in 1982, the business returned to its original name.

I grew up in a house beside it and was working there from an early age. I studied hotel management in Galway and got hotelier experience in Switzerland, Australia and Cork.