G8 Summit at Lough Erne
Lough Erne Resort hosted what Prime Minister Cameron states as “one of the most successful and peaceful summits in recent memory”on 17th& 18th June 2013 when the world's leaders and their delegations met for bilateral negotiations on tax, trade and transparency. The Resort, following months of visits from Downing Street staff, received confirmation from Prime Minister Cameron in November 2012 that they would be the host venue for the event and at that point began to prepare for Northern Ireland’s most important visitors in 2013. The decision to use Lough Erne Resort was based on the secure location, which allowed the leaders to conduct their negotiations in a private setting against a stunning backdrop. The leaders stayed at the resort's Lodges where they each had the privacy required while their relevant delegations stayed in the hotel. The G8 Summit's bilateral negotiations took place primarily in the Loughside Lodge which was transformed to suit the Summit's requirements while meetings also took place in the Gordon Wilson Library.
Ferghal Purcell, General Manager at Lough Erne Resort states: “Lough Erne was really an ideal location - it was only ever a two minute walk of private golf road to their lodgings. They were in splendid isolation. On any one day, having any one of the world leaders visit would have been a serious task. The fact that they were all here together almost made it easier. We had to ensure a high standard of care and professionalism for all delegates and that everyone was treated equally.” On the world leaders' visit to Lough Erne Resort and the use of the facilities at the resort such as The Thai Spa, gym and two stunning golf courses, Mr Purcell says: “These guys were here work, and work they did, from morning to night. Other than Prime Minister Cameron taking a dip in the Lough one morning, they simply didn’t have time to enjoy a Thai massage or a round of golf, although we would be delighted to welcome them back at any time for a more leisurely visit.”
Overall, the Lough Erne Summit was considered a success for Prime Minister Cameron as well as the local region, “Peak season began sooner and lasted longer because of the G8, not just here at Lough Erne Resort, but for all of us hoteliers in the Fermanagh area. At Lough Erne Resort, we have shown a tangible benefit which will have a knock-on effect. We have a wonderful property, it's in great shape, and we had a great two years. Our challenge now is to grow and build on the success of the G8.”