Tuesday 22 October 2019

Profits rise at well known hotel as it tees up €50m sale


The Portmarnock Links Hotel, Portmarnock, Co. Dublin
The Portmarnock Links Hotel, Portmarnock, Co. Dublin
John Mulligan

John Mulligan

AN uptick in profits at the Portmarnock Hotel & Golf Links in north Dublin could pique the interest of potential buyers after the property was put up for sale last month with a more than €50m price tag.

Accounts just filed for the company behind the hotel and golf course - which is owned by US property group Kennedy Wilson - show that its profits rose 10pc to €340,000 last year. Its turnover was up 17pc at €11.1m.

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"Following the completion of an extensive refurbishment programme in 2017, the resort continues to increase revenue and achieve higher profits," directors of the firm noted in the accounts.

"The directors remain confident that the trading position of the resort will continue to improve over the medium- to long-term with the upgraded resort amenities," they added.

Kennedy Wilson also owns the Shelbourne Hotel in Dublin and has extensive property interests in Ireland.

The group has $17bn (€15.1bn) of assets under management and Ireland accounts for 23pc of its $405m (€361.6m) annual net operating income.

Kennedy Wilson acquired the Portmarnock Hotel - the ancestral home of the Jameson distilling family - for €27m in 2014 from Nama.

It invested about €11m refurbishing the property, whose golf links was designed by German golfer Bernhard Langer. It opened in 1995.

Nama appointed a receiver to the hotel's previous owner, Capel Developments, in 2011, as it struggled with €100m of debts.

A subsidiary of Capel Developments, Natworth, had slashed €3.3m off the value of the north Dublin hotel in 2009. This brought its market value at the time to as little as one-quarter of its €70m price tag in 2005, when it was purchased by Capel Developments following competition from developer Gerry Gannon and Treasury Holdings.

Before being acquired by Capel Developments, one-time investors in the hotel included Tony O'Reilly. He invested in 1994, when it was owned by other investors including hotelier Michael Holland, and Mr O'Reilly's financial adviser, Brendan Gilmore.

The hotel has 134 rooms, and also features a spa.

"The resort also offers exciting growth potential, including further trading performance growth, various exciting asset management initiatives and future development opportunities," according to selling agent JLL.

Kennedy Wilson's Shelbourne Hotel is the most profitable in the group. The US firm has spent $40m (€35.7m) over the past few years refurbishing the property.

The property group also owns the luxury Fairmont hotel at St Andrew's in Scotland, which it acquired for £32m (€35.7m) in 2014.

That property might also be put up for sale by the group later this year, according to Kennedy Wilson president Mary Ricks.

Irish Independent

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