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Shelbourne almost back in the black

THE iconic Shelbourne Hotel has checked in a revenue boost and narrowed losses by 98pc.

The luxury Dublin hotel is now close to breaking even for 2011.

Pre-tax losses at the St Stephen's Green establishment were listed at €104,282 for last year, compared to a massive €7.6m in 2010.

The five-star hotel is run by Torriam Hotel Operating Company, a subsidiary of global hotels giant Marriott International.

Revenues at the hotel where the original Irish constitution was signed increased from €9.3m to €9.4m in the 12 months to the end of December.

The increase in revenues was no doubt aided by the filming of Albert Nobbs, starring Glenn Close.

Hollywood directors selected the plush hotel as the setting for the story about a meek, impeccably groomed butler at a respectable hotel in Dublin.

But the real reason the turnaround came about was after the company that runs the business concluded a legal battle with the building's owners.

The hotel's owner Shelbourne Hotel Holdings Ltd (SHHL) took a case against Torriam in relation to fulfilment of obligations relating to the parties' 20-year management agreement for the venue.

Accounts just filed reveal that the case went to arbitration in November 2010. The arbitration tribunal dismissed SHHL's claim, according to the accounts.

The €7.5m cost associated with the case comprised Shelbourne and Torriam's legal, professional fees and arbitration costs, it states.