Historic Montalto estate ready to open to public

Estate duty manager Bernie Hyland, left, with Montalto MD David Wilson and Tourism NI CEO John McGrillen
Estate duty manager Bernie Hyland, left, with Montalto MD David Wilson and Tourism NI CEO John McGrillen

Montalto Estate, a 400 acre private estate located in rural Co Down is getting ready to open to visitors for the first time in its history.

Owned by the Wilson family, the new visitor attraction represents a major private investment creating up to 30 new full and part time jobs in the tourism sector as well as the employment of 40 construction jobs.

The Wilson family, well known for running a range of successful Northern Ireland businesses, purchased the estate in 1995.

Following a major renovation they developed an exclusive luxury venue for business and corporate clients.

In 2012 this expanded to include the award-winning wedding venue – The Carriage Rooms at Montalto.

Their on-going business development strategy identified an opportunity to support the sustainability of the estate through the provision of a unique tourism offering.

This features the opening up of the estate to the public by providing a high quality visitor experience through the estate’s beautiful surroundings.

The Montalto Estate visitor experience will include; public access to the estate’s beautiful gardens with historic walks and trails including the Lake Walk, the Garden Walk and the Woodland Trail with an exciting area where children can play and explore their surroundings.

A purpose built centre will include a welcome area featuring interpretation of the estate’s history, a cafe and shop offering a mix of estate produce, local craft products and other items.

“We are delighted and very excited to be opening Montalto estate to the public,” said managing director David Wilson.

“Our aim is to provide a top class visitor attraction which will not only add to the existing Northern Ireland visitor experience but which will encourage visitors into the region.

“The investment also provides us with the opportunity to preserve the unique character and heritage of this magnificent site which will help to ensure its long term future as an important landmark and visitor destination within Co Down.”

Tourism NI chief executive ourJohn McGrillen said: “We welcome this investment in Montalto Estate and are delighted to see this new addition to our long list of unique and high quality visitor attractions.”

“Attractions such as Montalto Estate which enable visitors to connect with the culture, heritage and landscape of Northern Ireland are key to ensuring our continued success in attracting visitors to the region.”