Portobello portfolio comes to the market for €9m

Redevelopment opening for hotel, apartments or student housing

Two high profile buildings at Portobello in Dublin 8, most likely to be converted into a hotel, apartment blocks or for student accommodation, are to be offered for sale from today at a considerable discount on their original value.

Robert Corrigan of agent Browne Corrigan Chartered Surveyors is guiding €4 million for Portobello House and an adjoining site at the junction of Lower Rathmines Road and South Richmond Road and €5 million for the modern Harbour House close by at Portobello Harbour.

Both properties belong to Ray Kearns, founder of the Institute of Education, one of the largest private secondary schools in Ireland.

Portobello House, one of the capital’s best known Georgian houses, is presently in educational use and producing a rent roll of €150,000, some of it from adjoining buildings.


The selling agent estimates that the rent could be increased to €250,000 by upgrading some of the buildings and reviewing the existing rental terms.


A site of 0.21 of an acre at the rear had planning permission for an office and retail scheme extending to 1,808sq m (19,460sq ft\) with 15 car parking spaces but has since lapsed. Another planning consent which has also run out of time envisaged an extensive education facility.

Portobello House was home to the painter Jack B Yeats and an assembly point for a group of 1916 rebels.

Harbour House, a modern three and four-storey red brick building on the edge of the canal, has an overall floor area of 2,476sq m (26,650sq ft).

Though there is an existing planning permission for a medical centre extending to 3,877sq m (41,750sq ft) on the adjoining site the likelihood is that the next owners will opt instead for new apartments or for student accommodation. Harbour House will be sold with vacant possession.

Robert Corrigan says the Portobello area got a significant boost in recent weeks with the news that the former Charlemont Clinic site had been sold for €11.9 million to Ireland's largest hotel group, Dalata, with the intention of developing a 181-bedroom hotel on the former medical site.

Extreme shortage

The new hotel development would be seen as a stamp of approval for the locality at a time when there was an extreme shortage of hotel accommodation throughout the city. Similarly there was a severe shortfall in student accommodation in the Dublin area and they expected that some of the main players would pitch for the Portobello buildings to capitalise on the development opportunities.

Jack Fagan

Jack Fagan

Jack Fagan is the former commercial-property editor of The Irish Times