Gleneagle Group is the first in the world to embrace accessible tourism

Patrick O’Donoghue, Director Gleneagle Group (centre) with hotel managers, John Doolan, Gleneagle Hotel, Sinead McCarthy, Brehon Hotel, and Kathleen Lenihan, and staff celebrate the success.
Picture: Valerie O’Sullivan

THE Gleneagle Group has made history in the hospitality industry by becoming the first business in the world to be accredited by the European Network for Accessible Tourism. 

The announcement was made in Brussels this week at the launch of the ENAT Accredited World Tourism for All Quality Programme. 

ENAT is a non-profit association for organisations that aim to be frontrunners in the study, promotion and practice of accessible tourism. The mission is to make European tourism destinations, products and services accessible to all travellers and to promote accessible tourism around the world. 

“With ENAT, we want to help make European accessible destinations, where all travellers can move freely, enjoy new experiences and be sure of getting the service they need and expect.

“We believe that accessible tourism must be made a priority for the good of the tourists and for the long-term sustainability of the European tourist industry,” said ENAT Managing Director Ivor Ambrose.

“As the first hotel to receive the World Quality Programme Certificates, it puts the Gleneagle Group firmly on the map for excellence in accessibility management and performance,” he said.

The Gleneagle Hotel

Gleneagle Group Managing Director, Patrick O’Donoghue, remarked: “Our mission is to become Ireland’s leading hospitality provider offering universal access to all.”

He added: “Ireland has a rich history of welcoming visitors but if we are to retain our reputation as a world-class visitor destination then we must lead the way in accessible tourism.”

The Gleneagle Group developed a detail accessibility action plan in 2016 and, since then, the company has focused on making its hotels and services a welcoming and supportive environment for guests, visitors and staff members. 

The action plan was created in tandem with the ENAT accreditation process to ensure it would deliver best in class standards and operates a multifaceted approach which includes structural improvements, revised operational procedures and staff training. 

“We are absolutely thrilled to have been officially accredited by ENAT but our work is by no means finished. We will continue to improve our facilities, services and training and stay up-to-date with developments and new technologies,” said Patrick O’Donoghue.

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