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Debt-hit McNamara sells off his €12m luxury home

BROKE property developer Bernard McNamara has sold the spectacular mansion he built for his family in Dublin.

The former multi-millionaire had to sell his huge 16,000 sq ft home on Ailesbury Road to pay his creditors, including NAMA. He admitted last year he had debts of about €1.5bn.

The three-storey home, with an indoor swimming pool that could be converted into a glass dance floor for parties, was on the market for €12.5m. Auctioneers Sherry FitzGerald and Christie's International refused to disclose details of the sale.

Mr McNamara commissioned leading architect Brian O'Halloran to design the mansion in the 1990s. He even bought the adjoining property to make room for the vast building, which has seven bedrooms and five reception rooms.

He accumulated a huge property empire with a number of business partners, including top city hotels such as The Shelbourne, The Conrad, The Burlington, The Montrose, The Ormonde, and Tara Towers. He also owned hotels in Galway, Cork and Kerry.

His most controversial purchase was the Irish Glass Bottle site in Ringsend in Dublin, which he and Derek Quinlan bought for €412m just before the property market went into meltdown.

A number of allegations arose from the deal after the Dublin Docklands Development Authority became an investment partner. McNamara ended up suing the Authority.

A company established by Mr McNamara to operate the four-star Radisson Blu hotel in Galway recorded combined pre-tax losses of €4.4m last year and in 2009. He resigned as a director in February.

aokeeffe@herald.ie


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