People of Rosscarbery- Catherine O’Sullivan19/05/2020 | People of Rosscarbery
Time for another “People of Ross” entry folks and another outstanding B&B. Catherine O’Sullivan opened the door of her home “An Rosalithir” to guests over 25 years ago. Catherine has an award winning Bed & Breakfast offering wonderful accommodation and she also offers self-catering holiday accommodation in Rosscarbery with many guests returning to both year after year. Since that time, Catherine, her husband Finbarr and their five children have welcomed guests from all over the world and can confidently say rosscarbery.ie had formed a memorable part of their journey. Catherine and Finbarr have even have been included in books and films made by guests who holidayed here. Their children Triona, Kieran, Aisling, Brian and Maeve have made some wonderful friends over the years as well as contributing to the success of “An Rosalithir”.
Indeed many of the family have been members of #teamcelticross down the years and Catherine herself has supported us on many occasions’ co-ordinating baby sitters & child-minding for Wedding guests.
The house name is derived from the 6th century name of Rosscarbery, ‘Ros Alithir’, meaning place of the pilgrim. The pilgrims of today are visitors from all corners of the world, many liken themselves to modern day pilgrims!
One particular American couple have returned annually over the 25 years. This particular couple originally were on an ancestral trail. Their love for Rosscarbery continued so much so that in 1999 they married in Rosscarbery Parish Church - invited all of the O’Sullivan family and had their wedding reception in the Celtic Ross Hotel.
“An Rosalithir” Bed & Breakfast is Failte Ireland approved and a member of B&B Ireland. Recently all guest rooms en-suite rooms have been upgraded. There is a guest lounge where music, song or story telling nights can be had (and there has been many a late night) Guests are welcomed and given time to share their own stories - perhaps this is why the O’Sullivans’ have built up many lasting friendships.
As Catherine recalls her years of doing Bed and Breakfast, a fond memory springs to mind. Before the world had trip advisor and booking. com reviews, guests had alternative methods of expressing their delight in staying with Catherine and her family. In 2005 one particular guest from Alabama, USA sent back a hand painted tea set to the family. The beautiful set included the names of all the O’Sullivans’. The guest expressed her joy of the welcome tea and scones on her trip and the pottery gift was her way of encapsulating that memory.
All guests of “An Rosalithir” are treated to tea/coffee and home baking on arrival. Brown bread is very popular and often a baking demo is asked to be arranged for guests. The hospitality extends deep into the evening when Wedding guests staying with the O’Sullivan’s attending a wedding can be seen at 1am or later being picked up by Finbarr!
Catherine is an active member of the community, especially tourism and the Business Association and a selfless worker. Neil our GM has Catherine’s phone number on speed dial as, if there is a crisis, Neil has always maintained Catherine would know how to get you out of it!! The sense of community amongst the people of Rosscarbery has always been so encouraging. In this time of uncertainty for tourism in Ireland, Catherine has faith that the people of Rosscarbery will continue to support each other. Rosscarbery will prevail!
Even in the current climate Catherine says that a week does not go by that they do not receive an email from a past guest – some cocooning, some in lockdown, some with time on their hands but all with much the same message - thinking about how the family of Rosalithir are getting on and the wonderful time they had while on holiday here.
Catherine was also one of the Faces of Rosscarbery by Shay Hunston’s Faces of the Wild Atlantic Way Exhibition which was held in the Celtic Ross Hotel during their 20th Anniversary celebrations and Catherine and family have been so immensely supportive to the hotel both in their work for the hotel and promotion and collaboration with the Celtic Ross. We are so fond of all, hats off to a wonderful family and more amazing “People of Ross” – Catherine O’Sullivan and family.