Michael JF Wright Hospitality
The multi-million euro group, headed up by Michael JF Wright, has become extremely successful and is now a leader in the Irish hospitality sector, owning and operating a portfolio of six award winning bars & restaurants and Irelands’ largest Superclub. With dedicated and loyal staff numbering more than 400, the group has benefited from valuable partnerships within the drinks and entertainment industry.
Michael was awarded ‘Business Person of the Year 2013‘ at the Fingal Business Excellence Awards.
Michael JF Wright
Michael JF Wright is a member of the famous Wrights of Howth family, which operates a thriving national and international fish and seafood business. Independently, Michael has established himself over the past twenty years as a highly successful entrepreneur in the hospitality sector. As a board member of the Licensed Vintners Association – the foremost national lobby and industry representative group – he is a key player and influencer in the licensed hospitality industry.
Throughout the 1980’s Michael worked in various bars in New York learning the trade and gathering ideas. In 1995 Michael returned to Ireland and opened Wrights Bloody Stream in Howth. He took a derelict premises and transformed it into one of the most stylish and successful bars in the country. The Bloody Stream has received a number of awards over the years including Best Pub Lunch BIM seafood circle 2005, Best Bar Food Dining pub Guide awards 2004, James Joyce award for Best bar and Best pint and in 1996 the Bloody Stream was awarded Nationwide Pub of the Year.
In 1998 Michael acquired a lonely roadside bar in the idyllic Strawberry Beds near Chaplizod, on the River Liffey, and transformed it into the bustling Gastro Pub, Wrights Anglers Rest. Despite its relatively remote location The Anglers Rest has enjoyed a bustling local and tourist trade over the past number of years. The restaurant has won a number of awards including Restaurant Venue of the year weddings online awards 2016, Best Eating establishment Fingal Excellence awards 2014, One Fab Day Top 100 wedding venues 2013-2016, Best Bar Food at the Irish Hospitality Awards; D15 Best Restaurant of the business district; and membership of the elite BIM (Bord Iascaigh Mhara) Seafood Circle – BIM is The Irish Sea Fisheries Board.
In 2001 Michael spotted a gap in the market and opened a premier late night bar in Swords village. Wrights Café Bar has been hugely successful, generating an impressive turnover year on year. The Café Bar has been awarded Best Customer Service at the Bar of the Year Awards 2013, Black and White Scotch Whiskey National Pub of the Year and Best Licensed Premises in the Fingal Area 2013. Michael’s innovative approach has resulted in loyal and new customers frequenting the bar over its 10 years of operation.
In 2005 Michael developed the old St Lawrence Hotel in Howth and Wrights Findlater Howth was born. This is a very beautiful three storey building with a variety of areas to eat, drink, relax and party. Findlater restaurant and venue has been awarded the following over the last few years 2016 Best Seafood Restaurant overall- Good Eating Guide 2016, Best Seafood Restaurant- Good Eating Guide 2013 and in 2005 Wrights Findlater Howth was awarded Most Beautiful Restaurant at the London theme awards
2008 saw the first of the Gilbert and Wright chain open in Swords, and in 2014 Gilbert and Wright Malahide was awarded Fingal Pub of the Year at the Fingal Chamber Business Awards and most recently took home the same prestigious award for Fingal Pub of the year Award 2016. This was a uniquely different concept on the social entertainment scene; an eclectic mix of 70/80’s music, memorabilia and drinks, these bars have proven yet again that Michael has his finger on the pulse and a keen eye for what the market wants.
In 2006 Michael was granted planning permission for an 80,000 square feet entertainment centre in Dublin. This is home to the international award winning The Wright Venue. The entertainment centre also boasts TGI Friday’s, O’Briens, In Touch Beauty Salon, Pizza Dog, Airport Parking and a multi-million euro Penthouse Casino. In December 2013, Michael filled the last remaining unit and launched Hogs and Heifers which is now a thriving American style restaurant and party venue.
After an extensive fact finding mission to Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Beijing, New York, Miami and Ibiza, Michael created The Wright Venue, one of the most advanced and theatrical night club experiences available anywhere. Opened in 2009, it comprises seven bars and five luxuriously styled VIP rooms spread over three floors. The Wright Venue was awarded Best Nightclub Interior Design at the New York Boutique Awards in 2010. Also, it was listed in the Top 20 in Red Bull’s clubs of the world and voted Best Irish Nightclub in the Irish National Hospitality Awards for the last 7 years from 2009 -2016.
Since opening in September 2015, Marqette has be providing airport passengers with a real fresh food offering, cooked by a team of professional chefs and served by a friendly, committed and a well-trained front of house team to bring you high quality, taste and experience. Marqette is a simple food market inspired space. The use of reclaimed materials have been chosen to give the food court an established feel in what is quite a modern transport hub. With features including a 1960s Citroen split screen van, steel shipping containers, reclaimed timber from American Amish barns and Dolphin’s Barn Brick salvaged from the demolition of U2’s Windmill Lane studio.
Marqette has been awarded Airport Hospitality Provider of the Year 2016- The Irish Aviation awards, Best Start Up/ New Business 2016- Fingal Dublin Chamber Awards, Best Food & Beverage Concession 2016- DAA Service Excellence Programme and received a highly commended rating at the Airport Food & Beverage (FAB) Awards which makes Marqette No 2 in the world.
Michael is currently working on new projects to grow and expand the group in Dublin, the UK and the US. This unique and hugely successful business has consistently grown and expanded over the past 15 years in spite of the downturn in the economy and continues to go from strength to strength. Michael believes that the participation of his carefully chosen staff – all of whom share his ethos of fun and hard work – combined with his talent for understanding future trends, are just a couple of the factors that set the Group apart.
Wright Family Tree