Fitzpatrick Hotels In NY Use Touch Of The Irish To Draw Visitors

NEW YORK? Those expecting to see bright green shamrocks upon entering the Fitzpatrick Manhattan Hotel or Fitzpatrick Grand Central Hotel will be disappointed. ?Our hotels are about what Ireland has become rather than what people unfamiliar with the country and its history associate it with,? said John Fitzpatrick, CEO of North America for the Fitzpatrick Family Group of Hotels. Presidential suites are named after Irish presidents while regular suites have the names of Irish artists. At the Fitzpatrick Grand Central Hotel, for example, the penthouse suite is named after Irish-born actor Liam Neeson. Approximately 30% of Fitzpatrick?s guests are travelers from Ireland and the Irish ambience gives them a feeling of home. In Fitzers Pub & Restaurant, at the Fitzpatrick Manhattan Hotel, there are posters of Irish writers and Irish pubs. The Wheeltapper, the Fitzpatrick Grand Central?s pub, features relics from the Irish railroad. It was completely built and then dismantled in Ireland prior to being shipped and rebuilt at the Grand Central property. In addition, The Irish Times and Irish Independence newspapers are delivered to each hotel daily. According to Fitzpatrick, Ireland?s economy is doing so well that instead of driving six or so hours to the other side of the country for a weekend, people are finding it just as easy to hop on a plane to New York. ?For an Irishman living in New York, it?s great to know that the warmth and hospitality of the Emerald Isle is right here in the heart of Manhattan,? said Neeson at the dedication of the Penthouse Suite. Genuine hospitality is a major concern and much time is spent on training employees to ensure guests? comfort. ?Have a nice day? and ?enjoy? are two phrases that guests at the Fitzpatrick Hotels will not hear upon check-out or at the beginning of a meal. Confessing his distaste for the two phrases that are frequently used without any genuine sentiment, Fitzpatrick said that hospitality does not work when it is stiff and thoughtless. With much of Fitzpatrick?s business being repeat business, there is a level of familiarity and friendship between guests and staff. Guests are often surprised when they return to one of the hotels to find that the staff remembers them, Fitzpatrick said. Fitzpatrick Family Group of Hotels was established 25 years ago when Paddy and Eithne Fitzpatrick bought what is now the Fitzpatrick Castle Dublin in Killiney. The company expanded in 1974 with the acquisition of the Fitzpatrick Bunratty in Bunratty, County Clare and the Fitzpatrick Cork in Tivoli, Cork in 1987. The company?s portfolio expanded with the opening of the Fitzpatrick Manhattan Hotel in 1991. The success of this hotel resulted in a management contract to be the British Airways crew hotel in mid-town Manhattan, and in 1998, the Fitzpatrick Grand Central Hotel opened as well.