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Why We Launched JHC

Start Your Journey Here.

Since I can remember, I knew I wanted my own place. From 18 I started working in bars in Ireland, and after 5 years of pulling pints around the world, I arrived in Japan on a chilly autumnal morning. If you’re here reading this, it means that, like me, you fell in love with this country and maybe talked about owning your own place here. That’s all I did for years really - talk about it. To my friends, my customers, anyone within earshot really. In hindsight I’m sure I got quite boring pretty quickly. So a decade after serving my first Guinness, there I was, my twenties almost passing me by, still finding reasons not to take the plunge. You know: “Yeah but the timing isn’t good”, “Yeah but my current job isn’t too bad”. And especially this one: “Yeah I want to but I don’t know where to start and I don’t have time for research”. Enough. Seriously, enough with the excuses.


Putting my excuses to one side, I shuffled along to the local City Office, bumbled my way through a conversation with officials and by luck or by chance, I actually left equipped with the basics in starting a business. Just a little know-how mind you, but enough to know I had taken my first step, and that made all the difference. Four years later, after meetings, research, meetings, planning, meetings, location hunting, loooong hours of hard work, and yes more meetings – I opened the doors to An SÓLÁS Irish Bar in September 2014. My bar.



The journey was long and intimidating at times but I’ve been working for myself for 7 years now, and that alone makes it all 100% worthwhile. An SÓLÁS frequently features on Irish & Japanese Media outlets notably:


●Irish Independent:

● RTE Six One News:

● Radio Nova Dublin:

● Newstalk Dublin

● ZIP! Breakfast Show Japan. 1. 2. 3.​ :

● The Japan News:


​And here’s how by opening my own place has created other opportunities: that hard-earned experience, and the valuable contacts I built led to my appointment as a hospitality consultant by Ireland’s Olympic Federation for Tokyo’s 2021 games.


I have met many people over the years who have talked excitedly about opening up their own place, they chat about the names they have in mind, what beers they will put on tap, what food options they would have on their menu that Japan seems to be missing.

Touching base with them later to see how they were progressing, I would get dispirited by how few actually went through with it. Until that is, I learned why they stopped. I was genuinely dismayed to hear some of the misinformation they had taken as fact:


"I started to look into it but was told I could not do it on my own"

" I read online that 90% of new restaurants that open in Japan close down in the first year"

" A friend of mine said my visa was invalid"

"  I contacted a local law firm and they quoted me 1 million yen for visa and business establishment assistance"

" I would love to but I don't know how to take the first step"

 (If any of the above sounds familiar to you, please get in touch!)


Out of this I decided to launch Japan Hospitality Consultants (JHC), a hands on, no-nonsense hospitality consulting firm that supports you in every step of the journey of bringing your business ideas to life.

We will show you how YOU can do it.


Why do I need JHC? I can get all this information for free online.


The hard truth is: You really can't. In establishing JHC, we have spent forever and a day researching online on this very topic, and found ourselves getting disheartened by the sheer volume of [mis}information out there. Your time is too valuable to spend opening tab after tab trying to discern fact from fiction.

If you are genuine about opening your own place, would appreciate getting all your questions answered in just one place, and would like to be candidly informed of the journey that lies ahead of you, then look no further than JHC.

Learn from us to make the right decisions, and avoid the bad (and yes – sometimes costly) choices. In our initial 2 hour consultation, we will show you HOW TO SAVE MILLIONS OF YEN opening your business. There’s no magic formula. It’s just simple math really. Lets be brutally honest, there's a good chance your business idea will cost you millions more than you anticipate. A consultation with JHC for 2 hours at a reasonable fee could well save you before you're in too deep and have overcommitted. Food for thought.

Maybe you’ve only chatted to some friends about it and are ready to take the next step but don't know how, or maybe a location you saw fired up your imagination to open [your business name here] in your neighborhood. Whatever that spark is JHC will help you every step of the way. Just as no 2 restaurants are the same, no 2 clients get the same advice: your consultation will be optimized to get you focused and inspired to (finally!) start the journey of bringing your business ideas to life.


1. Let’s chat first to figure out where you are on the path to opening up your own place.

2. From that we’ll tailor a plan that answers your questions that gives you a clear picture of what lies ahead.

3. There’s no step 3. No more excuses; just get in touch.

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