Saturday 24 March 2018

Inchydoney Spa is still going strong despite Fleming link

Allison Bray

A LEADING luxury resort moved to reassure its customers last night that it's still in business after being linked with a previous owner whose business empire has collapsed.

Inchydoney Island Lodge and Spa in west Cork (right) was named in recent media reports as one of the doomed enterprises owned by developer John Fleming, whose Fleming Group went into liquidation with debts of more than €1bn last week.

But owner Des O'Dowd, who bought the five-star resort from Mr Fleming in 2008, said the hotel and spa near Clonakilty is still very much in the black despite the recession.

"We had a 58pc occupancy level last year and we continue to be a profitable hotel," he told the Irish Independent last night.

However, news at the weekend that Mr Fleming's vast hotel, business and property holdings are now the subject of court-appointed liquidators sent some of Mr O'Dowd's customers and suppliers into a frenzy, fearing that the hotel is also on the chopping block.

"It does make everyone nervous," he said of the commercial collapse of one of Ireland's most prolific developers.

"But there is no need for customers and suppliers to worry."

While the credit crunch and recession has impacted on all businesses, Mr O'Dowd said that he is fortunate to have lower debt levels than many other hotels that are struggling to survive.

"It's tight, it's difficult but banking issues aren't an issue for us and we haven't had any redundancies," he said.

However, he expressed deep sympathy for Mr Fleming, a friend and business associate, who lives nearby.

"There is massive goodwill towards John Fleming here in west Cork," he said.

Irish Independent

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