The profitable Muckross Park Hotel and Spa in Killarney, Co Kerry, owned by businessman Bill Cullen and his partner Jackie Lavin until it was put into receivership 18 months ago, is to be offered for sale from today at a guide price of €6.5 million.
Kirsty Rothwell of DTZ Sherry FitzGerald is handling the sale of the five-star hotel on behalf of Declan Taite of Duff & Phelps (Ireland Ltd) who was appointed receiver by ACC Bank. The bank was owed €9.2 million when the business went into receivership.
Accounts filed in August, 2012, showed that Mr Cullen, who fronted TV3's The Apprentice, ploughed almost €10 million into the hotel.
The couple later told the High Court they were shocked by the “aggressive actions” of ACC which had moved against the business with no warning.
The hotel showed a profit of about €100,000 in the year to when they lost control of it, March 2013.
Since then, the receiver has managed to increase the turnover to more than €5 million and the trading surplus to about €200,000.
Indications are that there will be no shortage of investors and hoteliers to pitch for the business, given its spectacular locations in the Killarney National Park and the high quality of the facilities available.
The hotel is the oldest in Killarney, dating back to 1795, and has been extended and refurbished in recent years to cater for an increasing number of Irish and overseas guests.
There are 68 bedrooms as well as 12 self-catering apartments.
A further block in shell and core condition will provide an additional six self-catering units.
The hotel has won a range of awards this year alone, including the TripAdvisor Top 15 Luxury Hotel in Ireland; World Luxury Spa Award for Cloisters Spa; Best Gastro Pub in Munster and the AA Rosette for Yew Tree Restaurant.
Even more importantly, it was named the Munster Wedding Venue of the Year in 2012 – it can seat up to 250 people – because of the many unique features of the hotel and the care and attention given to guests.
Apart from its traditional Irish bar, Monks Bar, and its Yew Tree Restaurant, it also has a first-class spa and leisure centre.