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30th Apr 2024

McGregor’s planning permission to turn Howth’s Waterside Pub into a hotel rejected


McGregor bought the pub in 2022.

UFC fighter Conor McGregor has had his plans for a new hotel in Howth rejected by the local council, after he was accused by local residents of turning the venture into a venue “reminiscent of Ibiza parties”.

In early March, the Sunday Business Post reported that the Dubliner was seeking permission to build a hotel on top of the Waterside Pub in Howth.

McGregor purchased the pub in 2022 and was looking to demolish the current premises for a new building.

The new building would include a part five-storey and part four-storey “boutique” hotel complete with a roof terrace.

However, locals raised their concerns over the planning, with one resident objecting to the “unprecedented” roof terrace in their submissions to Fingal County Council.

After the huge local backlash to the plans, the council rejected the proposal, concluding that it “would interfere with the character of the landscape or with a view or prospect of special amenity value or natural interest or beauty”.

The council also found that the plans would adversely affect an Architectural Conservation Area (ACA) and contravene the Fingal Development Plan.

Plans for ‘Ibiza style’ hotel belonging to Conor McGregor refused planning permission

Monica Lambert, a resident of Dunbo Hill, Howth, which is to the rear of the premises, said that the space would “without doubt be used as a beer and party garden reminiscent of Ibiza parties”, and would be “wholly out of character” for such a quiet, residential area.

“If permitted the proposed roof area would be open to bar patrons, parties, reservation parties and events, booming music, and a whole variety of loud activities out of character and without consideration of location and neighbours,” Ms Lambert said.

She added that “there is a danger that the applicant may seek to use the Roof Garden / Roof Bar as a late nightclub.”

Other residents raised objections to McGregor’s plans for his Howth hotel, with the main cause for concern being the obstruction of views of the harbour.

Nearby residents Patrick and Louise Rickard said: “The charm of this area of Howth is in the interesting and quaint streetscapes with unexpected views of the harbour and northwards to Ireland’s Eye and Lambay Island.

“It is one of the first areas visitors and tourists visit in Howth, after the harbour. If tourism is to be encouraged in Howth, this area should be protected.”

The Waterside has been closed since McGregor purchased the premises two years ago, with the MMA star also purchasing the Marble Arch in Drimnagh, which has similarly been closed since the purchase.

A third business owned by McGregor is his popular Black Forge Inn in Crumlin.

The fighter has pumped a large amount of money into it since it opened nearly three years ago.

Header images via/ thenotoriousmma/IG

This article was written by Simon Kelly and originally appeared on

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