The value of hotels traded in the Irish market in the first nine months of 2018 more than tripled compared with the same period last year, new figures from property agents CBRE Ireland show.
There were 12 transactions in the period totalling almost €263 million between them. In addition, there was a hotel investment sale worth €17.5 million completed in recent weeks.
This compares to 23 hotel transactions in the first nine months of 2017, with a value of just €87 million.
The figures were published on Monday as Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe mulls axing the special 9 per cent VAT rate for the tourism sector in next week's budget.
Among the larger transactions so far this year was the Hilton Dublin Airport Hotel on the Malahide Road, Dublin 17, which was sold for €22.5 million.
The four-star hotel has annual trading profits of more than €2 million. The 166-bedroom property has been in business for almost 12 years close to the M1 and the M50 motorways, and a few miles from the airport.
Another significant deal saw Irish investment group Tetrarch Capital acquire all of the Citywest Hotel in Saggart, Co Dublin.
Citywest was acquired out of receivership by Tetrarch and Pimco in September 2014 for about €30 million. Tetrarch and Pimco invested about €12 million in upgrading the four-star property.
Currently the largest hotel in Ireland, it features 764 rooms, 30 different meeting and/or event venues, a convention centre with physical capacity for up to 8,000 people and an 18-hole championship golf course.
The transaction was supported by a €60 million loan from Starwood European Real Estate Finance Limited, an affiliate of Starwood Capital Group, and the funds will be used to buy out Pimco from the previous partnership structure.
Elsewhere, the Radisson Blu in Co Sligo was sold for just under €16 million to iNua, a hotel operator with a number of hotels in the Radisson chain around the Republic.
In Galway, the Connemara Coast was bought by Austrian investor Thomas Roeggla for just under €10 million.
Also in the west, the four-star McWilliam Park Hotel in Claremorris, Co Mayo, was sold for €9 million. It was developed in 2006 at a cost of more than €20 million. Agent JLL handled the sale of the property, which was the subject of an examinership in 2016.
McWilliam Park has one of the largest concert hall venues in the west of Ireland, frequently attracting 800 guests to country music functions. It also has a full leisure centre and an 18-metre swimming pool.