Hotel sales reach €200m in 2013

There were about €200 million worth of transactions in the Irish hotel sector last year, according to a Savills report.

Notable deals in Dublin included the Trinity Capital Hotel (€35 million), the Clarion Hotel IFSC (€33 million), the Hilton Hotel (€30 million) and the Clarion Hotel Dublin Airport (€15 million).

Outside Dublin, there was a high level of activity in Cork with six hotels sold or sale agreed last year. The River Lee Hotel was sold early in the year for €25 million while Fota Island Resort went for more than €20 million. The Radisson Blu, Little Island, and the Kingsley Hotel were sold for more than €9 million and €6 million respectively.

Elsewhere the Rivercourt Hotel in Kilkenny is sale agreed for €9 million while Jurys Inn in Limerick sold for €2 million.

“Driven by an improving domestic economy and a 6 per cent increase in tourist numbers, 2013 was a positive year for the Irish hotels market,” according to Savills. “This strong level of activity is set to continue in 2014. A number of properties have already been put up for sale and Nama has recently announced its intention to bring further hotel assets to the market this year.”

Properties recently launched include Oriel House Hotel and Blarney Hotel and Golf Resort, both in Cork, with asking prices of €6 million and €2.5 million respectively. The Charleville Park Hotel in Cork was also put on the market recently at €3.75 million.

A feature of the market last year was the restructuring and/or sale of Irish hotel debt, such as the sale of the former Ritz Carlton Powerscourt loans to Brehon Capital, the sale of Bank of Ireland and IBRC's debt on the Shelbourne Hotel to Kennedy Wilson, and the sale of the Moran Group's senior debt with Ulster Bank and Lloyds to Canyon Capital.

International buyers were mainly focused on prime city centre hotels and trophy assets in regional locations while domestic buyers were more focused on regional stock, said Savills.