Thursday 20 November 2014

Ryan family puts Village at Lyons complex on the market

Popular venue developed by late tycoon to be sold as going concern

Published 08/06/2014 | 02:30

The late Tony Ryan
The late Tony Ryan

THE family of the late Tony Ryan, the founder of Ryanair, is to put the exclusive Village at Lyons venue the aviation tycoon developed next to the grounds of his estate in Kildare up for sale this week.

The Sunday Independent understands that the complex, which includes a restaurant, cookery school, cafe, shops, houses and apartments, is profitable and will be sold through estate agent Colliers as a going concern.

Contacted for comment yesterday, the manager on duty Billy O'Connell confirmed the intended sale of the hugely popular venue and moved to reassure those couples who had booked the Village at Lyons for their wedding receptions.

Mr O'Connell said: "All jobs are secure, all the weddings are secure. It's not a situation where we're going to sell and then cancel all the weddings. Everything is going to be honoured.

"That's part of the sale. Whether the new owners take on new bookings, that's beyond our control, but we're open for business and we are actively taking bookings."

It is understood staff at the Village at Lyons began the process last week of contacting some 150 couples with wedding bookings to advise them that while the venue itself will be going up for sale, their celebrations will not be affected.

The Sunday Independent has learned the Ryan family have made the decision to sell the property now with a view to taking advantage of what one source described as the "buoyant market" which currently exists.

With Colliers handling the sale, it is likely the Village at Lyons will attract overseas interest through the agent's overseas subsidiaries.

News of the proposed transaction comes just three months on from the Ryan family's decision to withdraw their late father's lavishly-restored 600-acre Lyons Demesne Estate from the market after its sale to an Irishman with interests in the Middle East fell through.

The sumptuously-appointed Georgian mansion had been on the market for €30m through Knight Frank and Christies International.

When it first came on the market in 2009, the estate, which includes a 22-acre lake in its grounds, a private airplane landing strip and professional standard stables, commanded an asking price of €60m.

Located on the banks of the Grand Canal, the Lyons estate had been a labour of love for Tony Ryan. The Ryanair founder spent a fortune restoring the house in the two years after he acquired it in 1996.

Teams of conservationists worked alongside more than 100 workmen to save what could be saved of the original house while Ryan himself scoured auction rooms across Europe to find art, statues and other items to bring the property to its former glory.

Sunday Independent

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