£4.2 million investment creates 80 jobs as Wine Inns takes on former King’s Head

Patrick Hunt and Andrew Rylands from Wine Inns pictured on the site of the former Kings Head on the Lisburn Road. which will reopen as The Doyen on September 28.
Patrick Hunt and Andrew Rylands from Wine Inns pictured on the site of the former Kings Head on the Lisburn Road. which will reopen as The Doyen on September 28.

A £4.2m investment by Wine Inns on the former King’s Head site on the Lisburn Road will see the South Belfast pub transform into a 15,000 square foot entertainment and dining complex, creating 80 new jobs.

The Doyen, the latest venture from the Wine Inns group, will open in the coming weeks following an extensive building programme.

The Doyen will feature a traditional public bar serving a top-quality, gastropub menu daily with a large outdoor seating area, a stylish café bar open from early morning, a family-friendly, Italian-themed restaurant upstairs called Morso seating 130, and private rooms catering for parties up to 140.

The main bar will have live entertainment from Wednesday to Saturday evenings and will be well equipped with indoor, outdoor and drop-down screens to cater for sports fans. A secret snug bar for 30 guests with specialised cocktails created by the venue’s mixologist will also be revealed on launch night.

The café bar will specialise in crafted coffee, brunch and prosecco, gin and cocktail serves

The facility will create 80 new jobs in the local hospitality industry and opens its doors to the public at the end of September.

Patrick Hunt, Director of Wine inns, said: “The King’s Head was an iconic bar, attracting customers from across greater Belfast, but it was badly in need of a makeover after a long period in administration.

“We have taken the character of the old venue and created two totally new concepts in The Doyen and Morso and we’re confident that local residents and those from further afield are going to love them. From tapping into passing commuter traffic by ensuring our new venue’s café bar serves excellent coffee and breakfast from 8am to showing all the big sports fixtures, our customers can be sure of a very warm welcome on every visit.”

The Doyen will be managed by Andrew Rylands, who previously managed Cutters Wharf for Wine Inns.

He added: “The Doyen will be a fantastic new addition to the Wine Inns portfolio and it’s a huge honour for me to lead our talented team ahead of the opening of the venue.

“With family-friendly food in Morso, and great cocktails and loads of live sport in The Doyen, we’re really offering something for everyone and are looking forward to welcoming customers new and old back to the famous venue on the Lisburn Road this Autumn.”

The Wine Inns growing portfolio of venues currently also includes Alibi, Cutters Wharf, Four Winds, Robinson’s, The Chelsea, The Eglantine Inn, The Empire and The Parlour.