Dalata's McCann fancies role in Jurys and Berkeley Court
Hotel operator Dalata is eyeing a role in the redevelopment of the former Berkeley Court and Jurys Hotels in Dublin, as the firm said it expected the "real value" in the hotel market to be gone by the end of this year.
The site holding the two hotels went on the market last week and is expected to fetch between €120m and €150m. It has planning permission for a new hotel and hundreds of apartments.
While Dalata is considered unlikely to buy the site outright, company chief executive Pat McCann, inset, made clear that he sees Dalata playing a part in the hotels in the future. Dalata already leases the Clyde Court and Ballsbridge Hotels, as the two properties are known.
"Absolutely [we would be interested in the hotels]," said Mr McCann.
"There is reasonably good planning on site at present. It definitely has an opportunity for a hotel on the site, and probably larger than the original planning permission but it depends on who ends up buying the property.
"We would be love to be part of it the end - it's a fantastic location," he added.
Mr McCann has an intimate knowledge of the two hotels. In 2005, as chief executive Jurys Doyle Hotel Group, he was instrumental in the sale of both hotels to developer Sean Dunne for nearly €400m.
Dalata has just completed the purchase of the €453m Moran's Hotel Group and speaking at his company's annual general meeting yesterday, Mr McCann said his firm was focused for now on integrating those nine hotels into the business.
He did not however rule out a new round of fundraising if there was scope for further dealmaking. "We have a very supportive investor group," said Dalata chairman John Hennessy.
At the AGM, more than 11pc of shareholders voted against the company's remuneration report.
Mr McCann said however this was one institution which objected to the company's three year long-term incentive plan. It wants it over five years.