Meet the Europa’s General Manager, Andy McNeil

Some places absorb the very culture, history and identity of the people they serve and the place they represent. The Europa Hotel Belfast is one such place. The city’s oldest hotel fizzes with energy, vibrancy, and love of life. Literally the life and soul of the city, it has for over 50 years, attracted every corner of society from Royalty to celebrity. 

General Manager Andy McNeil has worked within the Hastings Hotel group for 25 years and during his career has held a number of positions, get to know a little more about Andy and how he became General Manager in one of the world’s most famous hotels.


Andy McNeill

What is your current job title: 

General Manager, Europa Hotel 

How long have you worked for Hastings Hotels/Europa Hotel :

In 3 months, I will be 25 years with the company! From I was 16 I worked in the Europa bar for 5 years as a casual waiter and then a barman. For my student placement, I was a night auditor for a year then once I graduated, I was appointed to be the function bar manager for 4 years. Following this I decided to gain experience in a different department and was appointed front office manager in the Europa for 9 years, before being promoted to General Manager of one of Europa’s sister hotels, the Stormont Hotel. I really enjoyed the role in the Stormont and was there for 3 years, and successfully steered it through the most demanding and memorable “covid days”.

Then I was promoted to the Culloden Estate & Spa. The Culloden is a magnificent hotel, a personal highlight was when the Chelsea Football team was staying with us in 2021 during the UEFA Super Cup, I’m a huge Chelsea supporter, and getting to meet the team was a surreal experience (I even wore my Chelsea cufflinks as a subtle tribute!). I always aspired to one day become the General Manager of the Europa Hotel, which became a reality in 2022 when I was offered the job position. The Europa will always be a special place for me, as I have spent 21 years of my life working there, and it’s become my second home and family.

Favourite part of your job:

Making people happy with the experiences we create at the hotel.   

Reason for joining the team at the Europa Hotel:

I had just started a course in hospitality management when I was 16 and wanted to work in the best hotel, so I applied and was delighted to get a job in the bar at the Europa Hotel as a waiter.  

Previous experience before joining the Europa Hotel:

I had no previous experience but had great mentors who showed me the ropes…. Paddy McAnerney, Alan Williamson, and James McGinn 

Any interesting stories from working at the Europa Hotel:

I have so many interesting stories,  but the best ones I couldn’t possibly tell. One of my favourite nights was working the MTV after-show party that was held in the Europa, I was in the VIP area and the DJ started to play Don’t stop me now, the members of the band Queen were sitting there, Brian May stood up and air guitared while Roger Taylor pretended to play the drums and Adam Lambert started to sing!