Pub and cinema site sales will boost Harold’s Cross apartment supply

Land development deals completed for Rosie O’Grady’s pub and former Classic cinema site

The future supply of new apartments in Dublin's Harold's Cross looks set to be boosted following the completion of several development land deals in recent months.

On 0.5707 of a hectare (1.25 acres), the former Classic cinema site, marketed for sale through Knight Frank last year, has sold for more than €8 million – significantly over the €6 million guide price as a result of competitive bidding by a number of parties. This is good news for the site's vendor, believed to be property investor Michael Roden.

Prior to the sale, a feasibility study suggested that 76 apartments and retail space might be accommodated on the site. But the new owner, a developer, has yet to lodge a planning application.

A few doors down from the cinema site, a 0.266-hectare (0.66 acre) property has quietly changed hands. Rosie O'Grady's pub at 280-288 Harold's Cross Road was purchased in recent years by hospitality group Canbe after it was offered for €1.3 million by Morrissey's in 2012. This is a major discount on the €12 million reportedly paid by its vendors, who bought it in 2006.



The short-term accommodation provider was refused planning permission for an aparthotel at the site and has now flipped it to Wexford-based developer Anthony Neville for a sum likely in the multiples of the 2012 asking price. Briargate Developments, Mr Neville's company, plans to replace the pub with a six-storey development comprising 76 apartments, a large retail unit and 35 parking spaces.

Another site that has long-awaited redevelopment, 126-128 Harold’s Cross Road, appears to have found a buyer. The 0.14-hectare (0.35 acre) site was on the market in 2008 seeking €4.25 million, and had planning permission for 20 apartments and offices, which has since lapsed. More recently, it was offered for sale by the Agar commercial agency and Rivergate Developments, led by construction consultant Joe McCaffrey, has purchased it. The company has ambitions to build 34 apartments and 30 basement car-parking spaces, to be served by two car lifts.

Asking price

The 0.22-hectare (0.54 acre) site of the former Kenilworth Motors, which was marketed by Savills, has also sold for a price understood to be in the region of its €3.5 million asking price.

The vendor’s architect estimated that the site could accommodate a student accommodation scheme comprising around 120 bed spaces. But given the exponential rise in popularity of apartment building in the 12 months since the site first hit the market, it seems more likely that its unidentified purchaser will pursue an apartment development.