Brian`s Parents were Mr. John McEniff from Newbliss, Co. Monaghan and Elizabeth Begley from Carrickmore, Co. Tyrone, and were married in Bundoran in 1935. Brian has three brothers (P.J. McEniff, Sean McEniff and Liam McEniff) and one sister (Mary McGlynn).
"From the age of eight or nine my mother had me washing dishes in a biscuit tin at the Holyrood, " Brian said in Tribune interview in 2004.
Brian went to Bundoran Primary School ('Stella Maris'School which is now called `Homefield House` which was run be nuns and was a college of Domestic Science). At the age of 12 he attended St Macarten’s Boarding School in Monaghan, at the age of 17 he went to Cathal Burgha College in Dublin where he studied Hotel Management for three years.
In 1962 he went to Canada, to gain experience and worked for four years in the Royal York Hotel in Toronto, it was there he met and married Catherine O’Leary a native of Cork, they had three children while living in Canada. Brian returned to Ireland in 1966 to manage the Holyrood Hotel. In the same year Brian got involved in the Donegal GAA playing at Donegal County level, in the same team as the current Donegal County Council Manager Michael McLoone.
All of Brian`s family - five daughters and three sons run various hotels, throughout Ireland.
Brian McEniff is a Gaelic football manager in Donegal,Ulster and Ireland. He is also a well known hotelier in Ireland. His success culminated in 1992 when he led his native Donegal team to glory at Croke Park in the All-Ireland Senior Football Championship final against Dublin.
In 2003 Brain brought the Donegal team to The All Ireland Semi Final, this year he was also in charge of the County Team, he also managed the Ulster Team from 1983 to the present and under his leadership they won ten Railway Cup Finals. In 1975 he was in charge of the Sligo Team and achieved victory when they won the Connaught Championship. He has also managed the Irish Compromise Rules team in 2000 and 2001. They went to Australia in October 2001 where they won their games against the Australian Team and he also serves on The G AA Central Council.
He is the former manager of the Ulster side which won the 2007 Interprovincial Championship. He has also managed the Gaelic Athletic Association International Rules team and has been the Ulster manager for over two decades. Brian was SACKED twice from his Manager position. (As Brian stated on Ocean Fm 24th Aug2008)
McEniff's stood down from his position as Ulster manager in 2007, 25 years after taking the job in 1982.
In his playing career, he featured in the first Donegal team to win an Ulster Championship title in 1972 and was also the recipient of an All-Star award in 1972.
He is also the recipient of an GAA All Stars Awards in 1972 and has won numerous titles with his home club of Bundoran, the famous St. Joseph's combination of Bundoran and Ballyshannon, Donegal and Ulster. He won his last county championship with Bundoran in 1979, which included the late Brendan McHugh and Seamus Reilly, both county representaives for Sligo, Mayo and Donegal.
He was mentor to Nell McCafferty on the Celebrity Bainisteoir TV programme in 2007.
Bundoran is the heart and soul of Brians life and he enjoys strolling around the town, embracing Bundorans heritage and beauty.
Brian is Director of the McEniff Hotels including the Holyrood Hotel (originally bought by his father John in 1951) and the Great Northern Hotel & Golf links (bought from CIE in 1977 by Brian & Sean McEniff and Brians Brother in law Martin Burke for £100,000). In 1969 Brian bought the Hamilton Hotel which was next door to the Holyrood Hotel.
On the 7rh June 1979 Brian McEniff was elected onto Donegal County Council in lieu of his older brother Sean McEniff.
In 1988 Brian bought the Great Southern Hotel in Sligo, he gave over the management of the hotel to his Daughter Catherine and her Husband Kevin McGlynn. Kevins older brother Philip McGlynn is married to Brians sister, Mary and Philip run the Great Northern Hotel. In 1995 he bought the Rosses Point Hotel and this is managed by his Daughter Fiona, a few months later he bought Westport Woods Hotel and in 2002 the Skylon Hotel in Dublin
Brian was a founding shareholder and director of North West Radio for 14 years (1990 –2004)and also presented a night time programme of easy listening. Other companies Brian is involved in: Gnh Ltd., Southern Hotel Sligo Ltd., Raymar Ltd., Acorn Life Ltd., Premore Properties Ltd., Dromaraa Trading Company Ltd., Babodana Ltd., Connacht Airport Development Ltd., McEniffs Management Company Ltd., West Of Ireland Holiday Ltd., Chartmount Ltd., Masterways Investments Ltd.
Brian McEniff was embroiled in controversy in 2006 , when part of his land at the Great Northern Hotel Golf Course (near Tullan Strand) was to be Rezoned from Coastal Conservation to Residential, however Brian did very well for himself as the Councils Town Manager -Sean Sheridan and Council Chairman Tiernan Brady decided to purchase 6.5hectares for 450,000euro, that was 250,000euro above the Councils independent evaluation.
Redeemer seeking one more miracle ; Tom Humphries on how five decades of turning water into wine has made Brian McEniff the central figure in every Donegal success
Aug 30, 2003; In Donegal, they could argue over the low point, whether it came this winter or whether it came 31 years ago, or even at some...
GAA: MACCA SNIFFS AN UPSET.. BUT HE'LL ERNE IT THE HARD WAY; ULSTER CHAMPIONSHIP: Fermanagh V Donegal, Enniskillen They Are a Good Side & Playing Well. I'm Aware of the Task Facing Us BRIAN McENIFF If We Allow Them to Pass It around We're in Big Trouble DOM CORRIGAN BRIAN McENIFF DOM CORRIGAN
May 31, 2003; Byline: Orla BANNON DONEGAL boss Brian McEniff steps back into the championship arena after a nine year absence intent on making...
Brian McEniff has begun to work behind the scenes at healing some of the rifts that have developed over the last few weeks.
Nov 07, 2008; McEniff to work on repairing Donegal rift Brian McEniff has begun to work behind the scenes at healing some of the rifts that...