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HAPPY HOUR HOTEL | Celtic Ray owners opening hotel next to pub

Hotel will have Irish pub on sixth floor
Celtic Ray
Posted at 5:30 PM, Dec 01, 2023
and last updated 2023-12-01 17:30:03-05

PUNTA GORDA, Fla. — The Celtic Ray in Punta Gorda, known for it's music and beer, will be expanding. However, not in a way you're probably thinking.

"We're actually in the throws of building a hotel right over there," said Kevin Doyle, co-owner of Celtic Ray.

The 65-room hotel will go in the lot right across the street from the pub. The owners bought the land in 2019 with the idea of just having another pub.

"We're going to build a six-story hotel with an English pub on the sixth floor with a courtyard," Kevin said.

The hotel name is still in the works, but they do have the pub name.

"The Slug and Whippet," co-owner Max Doyle said. "It just rolls off the tongue."

Part of the land is owned by their partners, who actually own other hotels.

"We wanted to do something the complete opposite of here over there and kind of have a false rivalry against each other," Max explained.

They say with the Sunseeker Resort opening, the area could use more hotels.

"The executives who are in the meetings they have at the conventions, they will want to have somewhere else to go," Kevin said.

The owners say they know the little pub business, so the idea of a hotel has them feeling excited, nervous and terrified, they said.

"Because it's a big thing and we're not into a big deal," Kevin said.

It's a big project for a pub that's made a big name for itself in Punta Gorda. With an aggressive timeline to get it done, they hope to have it up and running by New Year's Eve in 2024.

The plan is to have a groundbreaking after St. Patrick's Day in 2024.