David Daly: At the heart of Dublin 4 is a great place to be
"Ballsbridge has traditionally been Dublin's premier address. It's changing slightly from embassy belt to a business hub. We're right slap bang in the middle of that, which is a great place to be."
That's what developer David Daly had to say to the Irish Independent when asked to comment on the prospects for 35 Shelbourne Road, the landmark office scheme he is in the process of delivering on the site of the former IPC building in Dublin 4.
While the marketing campaign for the 87,478 sq ft "best-in-class" scheme has yet to get underway, he expects it will hold huge appeal for companies seeking to locate in an area now being transformed by the arrival of aviation leasing giant, Avolon, and Facebook.
But where others have only become acquainted with Ballsbridge in the years since the crash, Daly's association with, and his investment in, the area is long-standing.
Quite apart from 35 Shelbourne Road, the developer owns the Pembroke Road headquarter buildings of both the Jurys Inns Group and The Doyle Collection, and a fully-let portfolio of 70 apartments and penthouses.
More recently, his company, October Investments, delivered a bespoke 25,000 sq ft office building on the site once occupied by Franklin House at 140 Pembroke Road.
Commenting on the place 35 Shelbourne Road will occupy within this, Daly said: "It fits in to what we already have in Ballsbridge. It gives a nice perspective to our overall investment."
Upon completion in April 2020, No 35 will comprise 87,478 sq ft of Grade A office space distributed over eight storeys. Located on what the developer describes as a "pivotal island site" immediately adjacent to Avolon's headquarters at Number One Ballsbridge, the building will have LEED Gold and BER A3 sustainability ratings.
While David Daly's focus has in recent years been on the delivery of office space, he is perhaps best known in Ireland as the head of Albany Homes, a company which at its peak built 800 new homes a year in Dublin and the greater Dublin area.
Beyond Ballsbridge, his portfolio in the capital also includes Airside Retail Park and Airside Office and Motor Park in Swords, as well as numerous properties on St Stephen's Green and Fitzwilliam Square.
Outside of Ireland, Daly owns a number of prime properties on Bond Street in London.
His decision to invest in the city's Mayfair area has stood him in good stead. Indeed, it was his sale for Stg£300m of the 20,000 sq ft Louis Vuitton store on Bond Street to France's richest man, Bernard Arnault, that allowed him to clear his debts in full to Nama.
Daly had created the highly valuable premises by first buying the original Louis Vuitton building located at 17/18 New Bond Street for Stg£70m (€78.75m), and then combining it with 19/20 New Bond Street, which he acquired for Stg£60m (€67.5m).