Michael Holland’s Fitzwilliam Hotel on St Stephen’s Green has been granted permission to add 34 new bedrooms, bringing the total number of rooms to 173. The plan didn’t attract any objections but Holland’s not yet in the clear as Fergus Dowd, the senior property fund manager at Irish Life, had submitted an observation saying they wished to “reserve our position”. That means they have the right to appeal the decision to An Bord Pleanála if they decide to do so.
Irish Life’s interest comes from its stake in the St Stephen’s Green shopping centre, which it owns with investor Pierse Moloney. They’re currently planning to put a 12-screen cinema on top of the centre at a cost of €9 million.
The multiplex will be run by the Anderson family, one of the most prominent in Irish cinema. It’s also a revisiting of history as the Andersons sold the Green cinema to the Slazenger family, as part of the site assembly for the existing shopping centre, more than 25 years ago.