If golf is your passion and you have cash to spare, then you might find an occasional home at Trump International Golf Links & Hotel in Doonbeg, Co Clare.
Two properties at the golf resort, owned by former US president Donald Trump’s hotel business, have just come to the market: a three-bed, three-bathroom ocean-view suite is seeking €795,000; while a two-bed courtyard suite is seeking €495,000.
The hotel and golf course, which opened in 2002 and were acquired by Trump Hotels in 2014, consist of 75 suites or cottages, the majority of which are individually owned, with the Trump family owning a few. Rates at the hotel this summer start from €364 per night for a one-bed suite, rising to €892 for a four-bedroom cottage.
The properties are being sold by two private owners, and purchasers have two options when they acquire such a property. They can keep it for personal use or rent it through the management company Trump Hotels, with a certain amount of time allocated for their own use.
"Most owners will ask for their properties to be rented out and therefore use their properties for two weeks in season between May and September and two weeks in the off-season between October and April. These do not have to be consecutive weeks and can be various long weekends or nights," says Brendan Murphy, director of real estate and membership sales at the hotel.
If you keep the property for your own use, you’ll pay an annual management charge, which covers maintenance to the property, as well as club membership.
Murphy says annual running costs will be about €15,000, including golf membership, if you don’t look to rent the property.
While capital appreciation is always a possibility, Murphy says the purchase of such a property is not a pure investment decision, even if you opt for the property to be rented out.
“It is important to point out that ownership is a ‘lifestyle choice’ and there is no guarantee on rental income or investment yield,” he says, adding, “it is purely for complete rest where you are treated with five-star service and a kind and friendly smile from the team who take care of all your needs.”
This means that you might end up making €2,000 for example, at the end of the year; or if occupancy is low, you could end up owing the hotel €2,000, so renting the property is more to achieve break-even, then offer a return on investment.
“If you get to break even that’s great, but it depends on occupancy in the hotel in a given year. It really is a lifestyle decision,” says Murphy.
All owners must become club members before purchasing a property at the development. The joining fee for the golf club is €20,000, while annual fees are €3,675 for individual membership, or €5,400 for a family, including children up to the age of 25.
Membership of Doonbeg also gives discounted accommodation at Trump Turnberry in Scotland and at Mar-a-Lago, Florida, where the former US president moved after the US presidential election, as well as access to dining at the resort. Other incentives include a 10 per cent discount on food and drink, and complimentary upgrades at check-in at Trump Hotels.
When the second phase of suites at the hotel were launched in 2004, the one- to four-bed units were sold from €520,000 to €1.1 million.
Recent sales at the development, according to the Residential Property Price Register, include 157 the Links (€480,000) and Suite 41 (€335,000).