Guinness fan James Morrissey from New York has checked in for a once in a life time overnight reservation in the iconic Gravity Bar at the Guinness Storehouse as part of Ireland’s first ever Airbnb ‘Night At’.
The unique competition, which ran in March, saw the seven-story visitor attraction listed as a residence on Airbnb’s website, offering one lucky beer fan and a friend the opportunity to be the first people to spend a night at the Home of Guinness.
To be in with a chance to win the would-be residents were invited to answer the following question: ‘What makes you the world’s biggest Guinness fan?’ The response was overwhelming, with over 40,000 entries from across the globe, but one entry stood out among them all.
“James’s passion and knowledge of Guinness and the Storehouse was evident from his entry and he captured the true character of St. James’s Gate which is filled with hundreds of years of history,” said Paul Carty, Managing Director of the Guinness Storehouse. “We’re proud of Guinness’ heritage, and are delighted to welcome such a worthy and enthusiastic winner through the gates.”
For 24 hours, the Gravity Bar was completely transformed for James and his wife Kaitlin, where they enjoyed a VIP experience complete with a Guinness tasting bar and private butler, “perfect pint”-shaped bed, pool table, life-sized Jenga and giant telescope for a night under the stars.
The couple were welcomed by Mark Sandys, Global Head of Beer, Baileys & Smirnoff, before being handed the keys to the Guinness Storehouse. They experienced life behind the gates with rare access into the heart of the legendary St. James’s Gate Brewery, the production site that has been home to the Guinness Brewery since 1759, when its owner Arthur Guinness signed a lease for 9,000 years.
Starting at No.1 Thomas Street, family home to Arthur, Guinness Archivist Eibhlin Colgan took them on a historical journey of the brewery along 19th Century railway tracks and through hidden tunnels, telling the rich story of the Guinness family heritage. They enjoyed a full Guinness Storehouse experience with private tour topped off with a six-course dining experience, designed with Irish ingredients and Guinness pairings by Guinness Storehouse Executive Chef Justin O’Connor and served in the surroundings of the Gravity Bar.
Following the ‘Night at’ the Guinness Storehouse, James and Kaitlin will be treated to an Irish breakfast before meeting with Guinness Brewer, Peter Simpson, who will teach them how to create their very own Guinness brew.
Gravity Bar is the symbolic ‘Head of the Pint’, Dublin’s highest bar and features unparalleled panoramic, 360 degree views of the city from the floor-to-ceiling glass windows. The transformation of the space into a luxury penthouse was curated by renowned interior designer Graham O’Donnell and features a balance of contemporary Irish craft furniture alongside original Guinness artifacts from the Guinness Archives, including notable works such as the Guinness Toucan.
In 2016, the Guinness Storehouse welcomed 1.65 million visitors from around the world. The Storehouse building was once the brewery fermentation plant and is now a seven-story visitor experience, where visitors discover what goes into the making of each and every pint of Guinness, as well as learning about the notable brand history which stretches over 250 years.