Six Generations of History
O'Donovan's Hotel is situated in the heart of Clonakilty Town. It is Clonakilty's oldest family run hotel, Originally built in Boyle Street (now Astna Street), in 1853, by Denis O'Donovan, our great, great, great grand father.
Denis passed away in 1886. One of his four sons, Thomas and his wife Catherine, had eighteen children. As the result of an accident, Thomas had one of his legs amputated. His wooden leg and "spare", can be seen in one of the many display boxes around the hotel. A portrait of Thomas now hangs over the fire place in Reception.
In the event of Thomas and his Wife dying he bequeathed the hotel to his son Denis. At the actual time of Thomas' death in 1883, his son Denis had become a priest and served in Rome.
Catherine, who was now the owner of the hotel, purchased property on Sovereign Street (now Pearse Street) and for the sum of one thousand five hundred pounds, had the present Hotel built by Sisk Builders in 1889, who also built the local Catholic Church.
On her death, in 1918, she bequeathed the hotel to her daughter Catherine. Catherine born in 1882, was fondly known as "Miss Katty", or "Aunty Kat". A pioneering spirit, she travelled far and wide, and was considered "ahead of her time". A keen horse woman she has been credited to be the first woman in the area to ride western saddle, wear trousers, and smoke, in public.
On her death in 1954, Catherine, who never married, passed the business on to her nephew Thomas. Thomas and his sister Bernie ran the business for many years. Thomas and his wife Mary had seven children, and now Therese, Tom and Dena carry on the business.
Photographs of our ancestors adorn the main stairs. Many artifacts giving an insight into times gone by, and many old maps and books, are displayed for the historically minded guest.