Thursday 20 June 2019

New name and a fresh start as feud-hit Regency Hotel becomes the Bonnington

Conor Feehan

Conor Feehan

The Regency hotel in Drumcondra, where Kinahan cartel gangster David Byrne was shot dead, has officially been renamed the Bonnington after a crane hoisted the new signage into place.

The sign was installed in four sections early yesterday morning as part of a rebranding.

The Regency made headlines in February last year when gunmen stormed the building during a boxing weigh-in.

Kinahan gangster Byrne (34), from Crumlin, was shot dead in the foyer.

Bonnington Hotel
Bonnington Hotel

The attack was a major factor in sparking the current ruthless Hutch/Kinahan feud, which has now claimed 12 lives, including those of two innocent men.

The Bonnington is now a sister hotel to one of the same name in Dubai.

Its former website has been shut, with a new website launched and bookings being taken. A search on Googlemaps reveals the Bonnington name rather than the Regency.

A source told the Herald the rebranding had been considered even before the gangland raid.

However, he added that the pace of the process was increased following the murder.

The hotel has also opened McGettigan's bar as one of the first phases of the refurbishment and had its official relaunch of the bar on Thursday.

Regency Hotel
Regency Hotel

Due to demand for hotel rooms in Dublin, the Regency saw little adverse effects on its sales in the 20 months since the incident, the source said.

The hotel received an insurance payout of €150,000 last year for the initial impact on business following the attack.

Earlier this year, it came out of examinership.

It is understood this was in relation to debts, for which the hotel was used as collateral, and not due to how it had been performing.

David Byrne
David Byrne

The source said this was a positive step for the business as it seeks to move away from the negative publicity of the gangland shooting.

It is understood a refurbishment of rooms has also taken place, and plans for an upgrade on the exterior are at an advanced stage.

Earlier this year, Kevin Murray, from Strabane, Co Tyrone, died while gardai were trying to extradite him to face charges over Byrne's murder.

Murray, known as Flat Cap after being pictured fleeing the Regency carrying a gun and wearing a cap, died after a short battle with motor neurone disease.

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