Dromoland purchase of Clare Inn secures 170 jobs


ONE HUNDRED and seventy hotel jobs were secured yesterday with the five-star Dromoland Castle hotel in Co Clare confirming it has purchased the Clare Inn hotel.

It is understood the owners of Dromoland Castle paid in excess of €1.8 million for the 188-bedroom Clare Inn, part of the Lynch Group of hotels that went into receivership in January 2011.

The three-star hotel property adjoins the 410-acre Dromoland Castle demesne.

The managing director of Dromoland Castle, Mark Nolan said yesterday he was delighted that after some 25 years, “the Clare Inn has now returned to the Dromoland family”.

The Clare Inn was sold to the Lynch family in 1987. Mr Nolan said it had been a “longstanding wish of the present owners and management to reunite the two properties under one operational team”.

Mr Nolan said the purchase secures the 160-170 full- and part-time jobs at the Clare Inn.

Chairman of Dromoland Castle and former chief executive of Independent News Media Gavin O’Reilly said the acquisition was about securing local jobs and providing further investment in the region. It also represented an important boost for Irish tourism.

Mr Nolan said €250,000 to €500,000 would be spent on the refurbishment. He would not be drawn on how much Dromoland paid for the Clare Inn, but said that there was an element of sentiment involved.

The purchase follows what Mr Nolan described as “a very successful and profitable year for Dromoland in 2011 and, following the acquisition of the Clare Inn, we expect 2012 will surpass that and further enhance the iconic status and appeal of Dromoland Castle”.

The latest accounts for Dromoland show the hotel had accumulated profits of €11 million at the end of 2010 with net assets totalling €21.7 million.