It’s official! After 12 and a half years the Abbey Restaurant will be upping sticks and heading just down the road to Lydon’s of Knockdoe, Claregalway.
We will be closing for Christmas on the 18th December and will re-open the new look Abbey Restaurant in Lydon’s on Thursday the 26th January.
Leona, Marty, Siobhan, Blaithin, Georgina, Niamh and Aideen along with Mike, Conor & Wojciech would like to them.
The following is an interview performed by us with Leona and Marty when they took over the Abbey Restaurant in 2004.
Abbey Restaurant under New Management
On the 10th of May 2004, Leona Monteith and Marty Concannon took over the Management of the Abbey restaurant in Claregalway Village – retaining the existing staff. I spoke to them recently to hear about themselves and their hopes and plans for the future of our Local Restaurant.
Leona is a native of Birr, Co. Offaly and Marty is from Barna, Co. Galway. Both come from a family background in the Food Industry, as Leona’s Mum was a Caterer and her sister is a Chef, as is Marty’s brother. Leona and Marty are both chefs, but for the moment Leona is looking after the Front of House. They graduated from the GMIT in 1996 and headed straight off to Australia, where they gained a wealth of experience in the Industry over the following seven years. On returning to Ireland last Christmas, they settled in Riveroaks, and have been getting to know the people and the area since then.
So, how does the new Management of the Abbey intend to make a success of their business in an area that is presently undergoing unprecedented growth, with a rapidly growing population, and the infrastructure to support it, including the two new hotels?
Well, they are extremely optimistic, and positive in their attitude, and they believe they can realize their ambitions. They are open for business 7 days a week from 5.00-9.30pm Monday to Saturday, and 12.00-9.30pm on Sundays. When adequate staff is available, we can look forward to ‘lunch being served’ also. From the menu on offer, I have no doubt The Abbey will be a very busy spot on a regular basis. The fact that Nora, Siobhain and the other ‘old reliables,’ who have been serving us all so well under previous managements, are still around to look after our needs, will continue to be a major asset to the Restaurant. The same menu is available upstairs and downstairs, so you can enjoy your meal in the formal setting upstairs or in a more relaxed, easygoing atmosphere downstairs, depending on your mood or the occasion.
Leona and Marty would like to make many people aware that they are available to cater for whatever the public require of them. Special occasions can be accommodated at any time, be it Christenings, Funerals, Family Reunions, etc. There is no problem in opening the restaurant especially to cater for such a situation. Menus and rates can be agreed to suit the individual need.
What about the effect on business of the new hotels due to open in the near future in Claregalway? Well, with the ever-predictable, positive mental attitude of the young people of today, Marty and Leona see this as a very major PLUS for themselves. They figure anything that brings people to the village is an asset. The hotels will bring visitors who are potential customers for the Abbey Restaurant. In fact, as Marty pointed out, when you are a resident in a hotel, it is quite common to go to the local restaurant for a meal, especially if it a reputable establishment with a name for excellence.
So, good luck to Leona, Marty and all the staff at the Abbey.