The headquarters of the Department of Justice & Equality, one of the most distinctive buildings on Dublin's St Stephen's Green, is to be offered for sale for the second time within a year. Agents CBRE are expected to seek around €15 million for the period building, number 94, which was bought by the Irish investment group Brehon Capital as part of the Ulysses Portfolio.
Brehon is now a major player in the hotel market after buying the Marker Hotel in the Dublin docklands, the Powerscourt Hotel in Co Wicklow, and Citywest Hotel in west Dublin.
Brehon’s decision to flip the St Stephen’s Green offices will come as no surprise, as many investment groups that bought large portfolios are expected to sell on individual properties which do not sit comfortably with their main acquisitions.
The building had been owned by a Galway-based couple, Helen and James E Cormican, before it was offered for sale by the Bank of Scotland (Ireland) as part of Liam Carroll's property empire.
The listed building has a modern extension to the rear and an overall floor area of 1,859 sq m (20,013 sq ft). The current rent roll of €1,020,000 will give the purchaser an initial yield of 6.5 per cent.
The front section of the building includes storage facilities at basement level and offices on the ground, first and second floors. There are additional offices at four levels to the side of the main building. A separate four-storey over basement period building, which is included in the sale, is currently divided into three studio apartments accessed from Stokes Place.
The buildings have been made available to the OPW under two co-terminus leases. The ground and first floor are let on a 10- year lease from June 2008, at a rent of €612,000 per annum. The lease has another 3.75 years to run. The remaining accommodation, including the residential annexe and 20 basement car spaces, are let on an identical lease subject to a passing rent of €408,000.
The buildings are located on a site extending to 0.10 of a hectare (0.24 of an acre), where the zoning objective of the city development plan is to “protect the existing architectural and civic design character to allow only for the limited expansion consistent with the conservation objective”.
Number 94 is close to the Stokes Place office campus occupied by KPMG, which is due to be upgraded. It's also on the same side of St Stephen's Green as the former Canada House, which Denis O'Brien is redeveloping to provide top-of- the-range offices extending to 6,880 sq m (74,000 sq ft) along with a basement car park.