Bewley's rent to double to €1.46m a year


By Cormac Murphy

BEWLEY'S has been left dismayed after an "oppressive" rent of €1.46m a year for its Grafton Street home was reinstated.

A Supreme Court ruling overturned a High Court judgment that had enabled the coffee house to lease the premises for half that amount.


At €2.30 a cup, Bewley's will have to sell an extra 316,522 Americanos every year to make up the difference.

The landlord is Ickendel Ltd, a company controlled by developer Johnny Ronan.

Bewley's said it is "immensely disappointed" at the decision and singled out NAMA, which it said controls Ickendel's loans.

"The landlord has managed to achieve an oppressive rent of €1.5m which was set in 2007 at the height of the unsustainable property bubble, and which is double the market rent set at January 1, 2012," Bewley's group chief executive John Cahill said.

"All we have sought to achieve is an acknowledgement of economic reality and fair treatment with a rent that reflects market values."

Bewley's rent doubled to €1.46m at its rent review date of January 1, 2007. It came up for review again on January 1, 2012, when the landlord and Bewley's disagreed over the lease provisions.

"Bewley's contended that the provisions allowed the rent to fall in line with market values, but the landlord refused any such consideration," the cafe company said.

Dublin City Business Association's David Brennan said it is a "concerning" development for businesses.