Belfast Telegraph

Ears to 40 years of Belfast's Europa Hotel

The Europa Hotel celebrated its 40th anniversary in style last night — bringing back the ever popular bunny-eared Penthouse Poppets.

Scantily clad models donned the traditional ‘Playboy Bunny’ inspired outfits to welcome the hundreds of guests with a 1970s-themed evening.

The Poppets were brought back to celebrate the four decades of the hotel, marking its birthday with a private screening of a newly-commissioned documentary charting the institution’s colourful history.

During the 1970s and 1980s the women, who wore scanty costumes along with their bunny ears, mingled with guests at the hotel’s Penthouse nightclub on the 12th floor.

One of the original hostesses, Evelyn Sullivan, who is now in her 60s, also showed up to celebrate the chequered 40 years of one of Northern Ireland’s cultural icons.

Along with the sexy sirens, the red carpet was hauled out to welcome the celebrities who turned out to pay tribute to the hotel, which was bombed multiple times between 1970 and 1994.

Guests were treated to traditional boozy summer-inspired Pimm’s cocktails along with canapes before being ushered upstairs by the Penthouse Poppets to view a private screening of the new documentary.

The BBC film, Bombs Bullets And Business As Usual, charts the hotel’s history from its inception to its many bombings throughout the height of the Troubles.

The afternoon screening was introduced by Enterprise Minister Arlene Foster with the evening show launched by the city’s Lord Mayor, Niall |O'Donnghaile. Billy McGinn, who has managed the hotel since 2003, said the event was a “fantastic tribute” to the famous hotel.

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