The highest spend, €299,525.37, was for rooms in the 131-room Kingsley Hotel in Cork
Hotel rooms and guest-house accommodation during the coronavirus pandemic is costing the State millions of euro, figures reveal.
Invoices paid for hotel, B&B and other types of accommodation up to July 15 show that the highest spend, €299,525.37, was for rooms in the 131-room Kingsley Hotel in Cork. However, it is not known how many rooms this figure relates to.
The second highest payment, €292,247, has been made to the Maldron hotel in Parnell Square, Dublin, followed by €164,220 to the Radisson Blu Hotel in Golden Lane, also in the capital.
The Bridge House hotel in Tullamore, Co Offaly, which has 70 rooms, has been paid €156,827.79 to date.
The 330-room Clayton Hotel in Liffey Valley, outside Dublin, has received €147,869 while €130,878.76 has been spent on rooms in the Annebrook Hotel, Mullingar.
As well as hotels and guesthouses, money has been spent on accommodation in self-catering apartments, private houses and student halls of residence.
A total of €14,460 has been paid to Gold Crest Student Accommodation in Newcastle, Galway, and €25,044.58 to the Talbot Suites at Stonebridge, Wexford, for the use of self-catering units.
Cheaper bills were run up in Donegal, where a number of properties supplied rooms on a "free gratis" basis, as well as in counties Sligo, Roscommon and Leitrim, where demand was lower.
Meanwhile, rooms in the five-star K Club hotel in Straffan, Co Kildare, were made available on a 'pro bono basis', according to the HSE.
Separately, contracts for other facilities, many of which have been chronically under-used during the pandemic, continue to cost millions.
A lease on the Citywest Hotel and Convention Centre in Saggart, Dublin, is costing the State €21m. It was to be used as a community self-isolating centre and coronavirus recovery centre, providing 756 rooms with the added potential of 450 beds in the convention centre, for a period of seven months from March.
However, there have been just 586 admissions to date and on June 22 the Government exercised a break clause in the contract, ending the lease early on October 22.
Three hotels in Temple Bar - Handel's Hotel, Temple Bar Hotel and Riverhouse Hotel - were contracted to supply 105 rooms between them at a cost of up to €105.72 per night if there is less than 50pc occupancy.
The hotels are being used for self-isolation and there have been just 108 admissions to date. The current lease expires on August 4, subject to extension if required by the HSE.
Meanwhile, a lease on the University of Limerick Sports Arena was acquired from June 8 to August 31.
Between 20 to 30 of the 84 available beds have been used on a weekly basis, according to the HSE. If the facility is used beyond September 1, a licence fee of €93,000 per month will be incurred.
Garnish House, a 21-bedroom guesthouse on Western Road, Cork, was acquired for use as a self-isolation facility for the vulnerable from April to July at a flat rate of €122,000. The 21 rooms have been in use since the lease commenced.
Separately, a three-month lease on Kealgorm House, Castleisland in Co Kerry, which is being used by the HSE as a community assessment hub, is costing €35,000.
Other contracts in place include the National Show Centre in Swords, Co Dublin, which is being used as a testing centre and immunisation hub at a cost of €4,500 per week. A two-month contract with a 21-bed guest house on Waterloo Road in Dublin is costing €50,000. So far there have been six admissions.
The figures were provided by the HSE on foot of parliamentary questions from Kerry TD Michael Healy-Rae.
Road safety chiefs have expressed horror at a 106pc hike in the number of motorists arrested for suspected drug-driving so far this year - with hundreds testing positive for drug and drink-driving during the three-month Covid-19 pandemic lockdown.