For centuries The Abbey Tavern has been renowned far and wide for its hospitality. The Abbey Tavern occupies a section of the original 11th Century site of St Mary’s Abbey, which was founded in 1042 by the Viking Sigtrygg II Silkbeard Olafsson – King of Dublin, who also founded Christchurch Cathedral. Parts of The Abbey Tavern building itself date back to the 16th century, when it was built as an addition to the original chapterhouse to serve as a seminary for the monks.
The Abbey Tavern has been in the ownership of the same family since 1944 when Frank Scott bought the business. In 1956 his daughter Minnie Scott-Lennon inherited The Abbey Tavern. The Abbey Tavern Singers were formed in 1962 when Minnie decided that musicians and balladeers performing in a relaxed sing-along manner would be popular. Within a short time the newly formed Singers were drawing capacity crowds into The Abbey Tavern. In 1963 The Abbey Taverns famous Traditional Irish Show was launched. The success and popularity of the business continued to grow, and soon The Abbey Tavern established itself as an iconic venue for Traditional Irish Entertainment. Minnie retired and her son James took over the successful running of the business. Today The Abbey Tavern is under the stewardship of a fourth generation of the family. Down through the years, many famous artists have graced the stage at The Abbey Tavern – The Dubliners, The Chieftans, Johnny McEvoy, Planxty, Christy Moore,The Clancy Brothers, Tommy Makem and Imelda May to name a few.
The Abbey Tavern has played host to Royalty, Superstars of the Stage, the Silver Screen and the Music World, Captains of Industry and Famous Statesmen and Women from many countries – all of whom came to sample The Abbey Taverns genuine Irish hospitality and experience our famous Traditional Irish Night. Princess Grace and Prince Rainier of Monaco, Ted Kennedy, Katherine Hepburn, John Wayne, Kate Beckinsdale, Neil Diamond, Garth Brooks and Pierce Brosnan are amongst the multitude of famous names who have included The Abbey Tavern on their itinerary of “where to visit” when in Dublin.
The Abbey Tavern Traditional Irish night is the original and the longest-running traditional show – now entering its 60th year. After over half a century of perfecting and honing the show – we can confidently say that we offer the premier Traditional Irish Night. Today, under the care of a fourth generation of the family, our extensive food and beverage offerings, excellent customer service and entertainment by our award-winning dancers and musicians enjoy the highest ratings.