Timing was the key to the phenomenal financial success of the Jervis Centre developed by Stamshaw Ltd, a company led by Paddy McKillen and Padraig Drain. Ireland was on the brink of a property boom when the company bought the threeacre Jervis Street Hospital site from UK property group Trafalgar for a steal at £4.7 million in 1994. It had been on the market for three years and even though the buildings were producing rents of £400,000, there was little competition for the city centre site. The £60 million necessary to build the centre was secured as part of a two-year loan from a consortium made up of Anglo Irish Bank, ICC Bank, Irish Intercontinental Bank and Ansbacher.
The centre opened with an impressive line-up of tenants, some of them heavyweight UK multiples like Boots and Debenhams, which were keen to get a foothold in the Irish market and were lured by the double rent allowance and rates relief. By October 1995, more than 65 per cent of the centre had been pre-let. The fit-out costs for the centre were estimated to be in the region of £50 million - slightly more than the construction costs.
Built within 15 months, the 1.1 million sq ft development has 330,000 sq ft of retail space and 45 tenants paying Zone A rents of £135 per sq ft, which are due for review next year. The rent roll is £6.5 million. The shopping centre, which has a 60 ft central rotunda and 750 car-parking spaces, opened for business on November 1st, 1996. The developers spent over £1 million refurbishing the four Georgian buildings which back on to the centre and which provide 11,000 sq ft of office accommodation. The developers agreed a sale and lease back with First National (First Active) on the integrated car-park, which was worth around £9 million.
The developers have retained the 16 one and two-bed loft style and duplex apartments on the upper levels which are rented at £600 to £850 per month.