O’Reilly’s Castlethorn launches plan for 72 new homes in Cabinteely

Developer’s company also snapped up Ashtown site this week for €6.65 million

Joe O’Reilly: boom getting boomier again for experienced developer.  Photograph: Eric Luke

Joe O’Reilly: boom getting boomier again for experienced developer. Photograph: Eric Luke


Developer Joe O’Reilly’s Castlethorn has ambitions to develop 72 new homes at the Old Bray Road in Cabinteely, based on a planning application submitted last week for a site that has been earmarked for development since 2005.

The proposed plans involve the construction of 46 apartments, (1-3 beds), 18 three-bed houses and eight four-bed units.

In July 2005 two neighbouring houses each on over an acre, Ards and Cartref, sold under the hammer for multiples of their original reserves, achieving a combined €8.9 million in total. Castlethorn was not the purchaser then, however it seems it may have recently acquired an interest in the 1.46 hectare site and is now seeking to redevelop it.

The 2005 purchaser was known as the Cards Partnership, comprising Karl Butler along with Ciarán and Colum Butler, the brothers behind the Starbucks franchise in Ireland. The Butlers successfully obtained planning permission for a residential scheme in May 2007 however no development materialised.

In 2015, the houses appeared in the property price register at a much-reduced €1.8 million in total and a planning application was subsequently lodged by a company linked to the Butler family suggesting that the sale was merely a restructuring of their affairs. It appears that they have now likely disposed of the site to O’Reilly’s Castlethorn.

From the plush surrounds of his nearby Foxrock mansion, O’Reilly must be feeling a sense of deja-vu, such is the extent of his bounce-back from the depths of recession when at one point he, along with other leading developers, must have believed they would never build a house again.

O’Reilly’s Castlethorn is currently developing multiple new homes schemes aimed at first time buyers, including Rathborne Park in Ashtown, just around the corner from Ashton House, a classical mansion on 28 acres that O’Reilly reportedly snapped up this week for €6.65 million.

At the top end of the market, Castlethorn is developing Brighton Wood in Foxrock, while O’Reilly’s Chartered Land is developing the landmark Landsdowne Place scheme in Ballsbridge where apartments are priced at up to €7.5 million.

And along with developing, he’s investing. O’Reilly was the unnamed investor who splashed out €9.5 million through his Chartered Land Nominees investment vehicle to buy 21 office suites, one retail unit and 54 parking spaces at Q House on Sandyford’s Furze Road in recent months. The units are expected to command rents of nearly €1 million per annum once fully let.

Looks like the boom is getting boomier. Again.