15th February (Issue 334)

Welcome to the Origin Capital Weekly Irish Property Review. This update is designed to provide you with a full recap of the latest property news from the media over the last seven days.



Blackrock, Co. Dublin Home Store and More, the Irish homeware retailer has agreed to take c. 23,000 sq. ft. of space at the former Debenhams in the Frascati centre Blackrock. The centre, which recently underwent a €30m extension and refurbishment, is also home to Marks & Spencer and Aldi. This will be Home Store and More’s 23rd outlet in Ireland. The Irish Times, 9th February

Grafton Street, Dublin 2 Lego is opening its first Irish store in Grafton Street in Summer 2022. The shop will have a minifigure factory where shoppers can design their own unique Lego minifigures. It will also blend physical and digital experiences in an immersive way. The Irish Times, 10th February

Planning Rules in Dublin City Centre Dublin City Council has proposed to downgrade certain streets in Dublin from their retail status category one to category two. Some of the streets included are O’Connell Street, Liffey Street, Earl Street and Middle Abbey Street on the north side and Wicklow Street, South King Street, Duke Street and South Anne Street on the south side. As a result of this proposal, only Grafton Street and Henry Street and Mary Street will remain as category one retail. Under category two, property owners may be allowed a wider range of uses such as cafés and restaurants, cultural, tourist and entertainment uses as well as “retail services that add to the vibrancy of these streets and create a mixed use environment to provide for a more integrated shopping and leisure experience.” The Sunday Business Post, 13th February

Covid 19 Rent Arrears Appeal Foot Locker has gone to the Court of Appeal in relation to their Grafton Street premises. It is understood that this appeal is the first-ever court case to arise regarding rent arrears from the Covid 19 pandemic to be taken to an appellant court in Ireland. Foot Locker are seeking a write off more than €519k arrears relating to 253 days they were unable to open as a result of lockdown. Their arrears are over €1m relating to their €750k pa lease with Percy Nominees Ltd, their landlord and an investment company run by Davy Stockbrokers. Foot Locker lost their High Court action. The Sunday Business Post, 13th February



Kilternan, Dublin 18 The Golden Ball pub in Kilternan is on the market guiding €2m. The 10,333 sq. ft. two storey property is located on the Enniskerry Road at the junction with Glenamuck Road and includes a ground-floor lounge bar, public bar and two first-floor function rooms, offices and stores. The Irish Independent, 10th February

Dobbins Restaurant, Dublin 2 is guiding €1.5m with Bagnall Doyle MacMahon. The 3,778 sq. ft. two storey restaurant has capacity for more than 100 covers but has not traded for some years and would require capital expenditure. The property is located on Stephen’s Lane, Dublin 2 in the heart of Georgian Dublin. It comprises a ground-floor bar/reception area and customer toilets, a large catering kitchen and dining area, a conservatory-style restaurant, plus an outside terrace/smoking area. On the first floor there is a private dining room, a prep kitchen with cold-room storage, and staff changing facilities. The Irish Independent, 10th February

Montenotte Hotel, Cork City is investing €4m in creating 23 individual green suites with views over Cork City. The suites will range in size from 430 sq. ft. to 592 sq. ft. They will include five elevated or suspended “nests”, four cantilevered suites and 13 woodland suites below the treeline along with 969 sq. ft. breakfast /services area. The Irish Examiner, 10th February

Boland’s Pub, Stillorgan, Co Dublin is on the market with Bagnall Doyle MacMahon for €1.5m. The property extends to 4,262 sq. ft. and is located on The Hill, beside Stillorgan Shopping Centre. It comprises a lounge bar on the ground floor with overflow capacity on the first floor. The Irish Independent, 10th February

Viaduct Inn, Cork Cliste Hospitality has purchased a bar/restaurant beside the Victorian-era Chetwynd Viaduct in an off-market deal for an undisclosed sum which The Irish Examiner notes is likely to be €1.5m – €2m. the CEO of Cliste Hospitality Paul Fitzgerald has commented that they plan to develop it as a major food and drinks destination on the gateway to West Cork. The Irish Examiner, 10th February

Blarney Castle, Co. Cork The Blarney Castle Estate Partnership who operate the Blarney Castle has brought a High Court challenge against An Bord Pleanála’s decision to grant planning permission for a development that includes a 80 bed hotel, 70 residential units and supermarket on a site 200m from the attraction. The decision to grant the permission went against its own inspector and Cork County Council. It is believed that the proposed development would damage the castle’s character and reputation as a major tourist attraction. The Irish Times, 14th February

Killashee Hotel, Co Kildare FBD Hotels and Resorts has agreed to buy Killashee Hotel for €25m from Tetrarch Capital. The four-star hotel in Naas has 141 bedrooms, 20 meeting rooms, three conference and event ballrooms, two wedding venues a gym and 25m pool. The acquisition will bring to six the number of luxury hotels owned by FBD Hotels and Resorts including the Heritage Hotel and Spa, Laois, Castleknock Hotel, Dublin and Faithlegg Hotel, Waterford. The Irish Independent, 14th February



40 Mespil Road, Dublin 4 Huawei, the Chinese ICT firm and Crowe, the Irish accountancy and business advisory firm, have both agreed to lease space at 40 Mespil Road. The property was the former BOI headquarters, but the bank commenced marketing the 120,000 sq. ft. space to sublet in 2021 having moved to a hybrid working model. Crowe are taking the penthouse office suite and Huawei are taking the fourth floor. Both are subletting c.28,000 sq. ft. until 2028. The third floor extending to 16,000 sq. ft. is still available to let on flexible terms of €52.50 psf through Savills. The Irish Times, 9th February

Office take-up in Dublin According to Hibernia Reit, office take-up in Dublin has continued to recover which is led by occupiers in the technology and professional services sectors. Circa 1m sq. ft. was leased in Q4 2021 with two large lettings accounting for half of this. Q4 2021 was the third consecutive quarterly increase in take up of office space. Grade A office space vacancy rate in Dublin City centre fell from 11.1% to 9.1% from Q3 to Q4 2021, and was 8.7% at the end of 2020. Overall Dublin office vacancy rate fell from 10.5% to 9.8% QoQ compared with 9.5% in Q4 2020. Prime Grade A office headline rents “remained stable” at €57.50 psf. The Irish Independent, 10th February

83 Harcourt Street, Dublin 2 has been brought to market with Knight Frank guiding €2.5m (€519 psf). The 2,393 sq. ft. four-storey over basement end of terrace Georgian property is for sale with the benefit of vacant possession and also includes the period annex building on 1 Clonmel Street, bringing the total internal space up to c. 4,820 sq. ft. The Irish Times, 9th February



Rental Prices Dublin According to Daft.ie, the number of homes available to rent has fallen close to historic lows when rents have increased sharply. There were fewer than 1,400 to rent nationally at the beginning of February 2022 with just 712 available in Dublin, the lowest levels since Daft’s records began in 2006. This coincided with a sharp spike in rents in Dublin with rents rising more than 4% in the last three months of 2021 to an average €2,258 in South Dublin and €1,897 in North Dublin. Nationally the average rent on Daft was €1,524 at the end of 2021, a rise of 10% in 12 months. The Irish Times, 9th February

Share Equity Scheme A new Business Post analysis has found that rising property prices are threatening to reduce the impact of the government’s shared equity scheme before it has opened for applicants. The scheme is due to launch mid 2022 and will involve the government supporting first time buyers by taking a 20% equity stake in the property. Only new build homes below certain prices will be eligible. €450k for Dublin City and Dun Laoghaire, €400k in Fingal, Wicklow, Galway city, Cork city and south Dublin and €350k in Co Cork, Co Galway, Kildare, Meath and Limerick. The Business Post’s review shows there are very few that meet this requirement. Of the 50+ developments in Dublin only four have homes within the price limits. There are no homes in Waterford and Tipperary that meet the requirements. Some parts of Cork and Wexford have a number of developments but in Cork these homes are €10k below the €350k cap and in Wexford the houses are advertised at prices between €248k and €280k where the cap is €300k. House prices rose by 13.5% in 2021 and are expected to rise by a further 5% in 2022. The Sunday Business Post, 13th February

Drogheda, Co Louth REA Grimes is guiding €4m for a 35.6 acre site (€112k per acre) located in Drogheda, Co. Louth and is seeking formal tenders by 12pm on 2nd March. The site is being sold on behalf of Premier Periclase and is adjacent to the company’s site at Boyne Road. It is zoned E1-General Employment. The Irish Times, 9th February

Wicklow Town, Co. Wicklow Vincent Finnegan is seeking tenders by March 25th for a 7.57 acre site at the Murrough in CO Wicklow, which is a strip of land bounded by the Irish Sea and Vartry River. The site is zoned mixed use, which includes residential, community, employment and retail uses and has the potential to accommodate more than 450 homes. While there is no guide price, market sources indicate the site could be worth more than €7m (€925k per acre). The Irish Times, 9th February

Kilkenny City Hooke and MacDonald is guiding €4.1m for a 13.5 acre site (€304k per acre) with full planning permission for 42 new homes. These include ten three-bed 1,335 sq. ft. semi detached houses, 27 four-bed detached 2,088 sq. ft. houses and six five-bed 2,7,23 sq.ft. houses. The Sunday Business Post, 13th February



Aerodrome Business Park, Dublin IPUT is looking for a tenant for a new logistics facility at Aerodrome Business Park in southwest Dublin. The 160,000 sq. ft. logistics facility at Unit Q will be completed in July, and follows the successful letting of Unit G, a 120,000 sq. ft. facility, to Lifestyle Sports. The latest facility at Aerodrome is part of IPUT’s pipeline of 1.4m sq. ft. of logistics assets, with a focus on sustainable real estate/logistics. Unit Q will have the highest sustainability standards in the market: LEED Gold, BREEAM Excellent and a BER A3 rating. Philip Harvey of Harvey has been appointed as leasing agent for Unit Q. IPUT is the largest owner of offices and logistics assets in Dublin, and currently has a portfolio of about 2.5m sq. ft. of logistics assets, the largest portfolio of prime logistics assets in Ireland. The Irish Times, 9th February

Northwest Business Park, Dublin 15 Park Developments is selling three logistics investment properties at Northwest Business Park Phase 2. Fully let, the three units total 33,500 sq. ft. and are generating €230k per annum from two tenants (OTIF Logistics & RTFF Business Services). Selling agent Fergus O’Farrell of Savills is guiding €6m for the premises, which comprise Units 507A and B along with 508A Mitchelstown Road. Developed by Michael Cotter’s Park Developments, Northwest Business Park is one of Dublin’s established industrial locations. The units are within 6.5kms of Junction 5 and Junction 6 on the M50, providing motorway access to all main arterial routes. The Irish Independent, 10th February

Rathcoole, Co Dublin Joint Agents CBRE and Savills have brought Building Two at Greenogue Logistics Park to market to lease. They are seeking €10.50 psf on a ten-year lease. Building Two is Ireland’s largest speculatively developed logistics facility and extends to 287,117 sq. ft. and is ready for immediate occupation. The Sunday Business Post, 13th February



Creches, Dublin Giraffe childcare, the provider that operates 29 creches in Dublin, is set to expand its presence further through the acquisition of two creches for more than €2.65m. They are in Rathgar and Lucan, were sold by Cairn Homes and comprise about c.12,583 sq. ft. of space. Both creches are fitted out and are expected to open in summer 2022 by Giraffe Childcare, which is owned by UK provider Busy Bees. Selling agent Hooke & MacDonald said there was very strong interest in both. The Marianella creche in Rathgar extends to 5,156 sq. ft. The Shackleton Mill creche is located in Lucan and extends to c.7,427 sq. ft. Hooke & MacDonald noted very strong interest in both creches with competitive bidding ensuing amongst a number of established creche operators, which was brought to a head via a best bid process. The agent is seeing strong demand from operators in the greater Dublin area. The creche market has seen considerable activity of late. Busy Bees recently acquired Park Academy Childcare, another Irish operator, while last year British venture capital group Business Growth Fund put €10.5m into fast-growing Irish operator Tigers Childcare. The Irish Times, 9th February

Photovoltaic Solar Farm The Dublin Airport Authority has lodged plans for a photovoltaic solar farm on a 26.7 acre site southwest of the airfield bounded by St Margaret’s Road, Harristown Lane and South Parallel Road. If permitted, it would supply 8.1% of Dublin Airport’s overall energy requirements and 11.7% of its electrical requirements according to a DAA spokesman. The Irish Times, 10th February


If you have an article which you would like to have considered for inclusion in our next weekly report, please contact us at info@origincapital.ie

Origin Capital funds senior debt transactions in the CRE investment sector, typically in excess of €3m, and has lent over €200m to clients since April 2015.

Origin Capital is a wholly owned subsidiary of LeBruin, a leading provider of corporate finance solutions.

If you would like to discuss how Origin Capital can help with your funding requirements, please contact us on 01 662 9264.