16th February (Issue 284)

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.




St Stephen’s Green, Dublin 2 Kennedy Wilson has submitted a planning application for a campus capable of accommodating thousands of workers on St. Stephen’s Green. The proposed campus would involve the demolition of KPMG’s current Harcourt Street premises and replaced with a new four-to eight-storey building as part of an overall plan to deliver c. 430k sq. ft of new office space. Should it be approved the development would have the capacity to accommodate upwards of 3,000 office workers on site. The Irish Times, 10th February

Blackstone, Dublin 2 Blackstone have been given permission by the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission to proceed with the purchase of the majority interest in two Dublin office buildings. Blackstone is acquiring the stakes held by Colony Capital in Burlington Plaza and the Three Ireland HQ at 28/29 St. John Rogerson’s Quay. The sale is part of Colony Capital’s planned disposal of its wider Irish property interests. Colony acquired its share of Burlington Plaza and Three Ireland’s HQ as part of its purchase for €455m in 2017 of Nama’s €1.5bn Project Tolka. The Irish Times, 10th February



Morrison Hotel, Dublin 1 The owner of the Morrison Hotel has reduced its asking price from €80m to €68m (15% reduction). The hotel originally went up for sale on March 12th 2020, just as the COVID-19 lockdowns commenced. The hotel is owned by Russia’s richest women Yelena Baturina who bought it for €22m in 2012 and spent €10m on a refurbishment.  The hotel comprises 145 guest rooms and suites, seven meeting and events facilities capable of accommodating up to 240 guests, as well as a state-of-the-art fitness centre. The hotel also includes a range of bar and restaurant facilities. The Irish Times, 10th February

Celbridge Manor Hotel, Kildare John P Young has launched the sale of the Celbridge Manor Hotel in Kildare for €6.5m. The hotel has 66 bedrooms (€98k per room) and is on a 6.5-acre site, which is zoned mixed use.  The hotel underwent a €1.5m refurbishment in 2017 and was purchased in 2013 by a consortium led by Jeff Leo. It is understood that the owners have decided to dispose of the Celbridge Manor Hotel to concentrate on their two other Irish hotel investments, the Dundrum House Hotel in Co Tipperary and the Pillo Hotel in Ashbourne, Co Meath. The Irish Times, 10th February



Donnybrook, Dublin 4 Redrock Developments, a company founded by Keith Craddock, is planning to build a 12 storey build to rent development next to the Energia Park in Donnybrook. The proposed scheme is on the site of the Circle K garage, which is across the road from the stadium. The proposed block will consist of 84 one and two-bedroom units, each with a private balcony/terrace. There will be a shop and café on the ground floor and the development will include a resident’s lounge, gym and concierge services. The Sunday Times, 14th February

Clonskeagh, Dublin 6 Gerry Gannon has sold the Paper Mill site in Clonskeagh to Bain Capital. Knight Frank was seeking €18-20m and it is reported that it was sold for just over €18m with CBRE acting for Bain. State agency Nama will benefit from the deal as it had a charge on the site. The 3.14-acre site (c€5.7m per acre) has planning permission for 126 apartments in blocks rising to four storeys and the deal also included 10 existing terraced period houses on Clonskeagh Road with full planning permission for their refurbishment. Planning permission on the site includes 25 one-bedroom apartments, 98 two-beds and three mews/penthouse units. The Irish Independent, 11th February

Monkstown, Dublin An Bord Pleanála has refused planning permission to fast track plans for an apartment complex for Monkstown in south Dublin. This was following an objection by local objectors against a SHD approved scheme. The appeals board found that the planned 122-unit proposal by Randalswood Construction Ltd would seriously injure the residential and visual amenities of adjoining properties due to overshadowing and overlooking. In refusing planning permission, the board overruled the recommendation of its own inspector to grant planning. The Irish Times, 15th February

House Prices House Prices rose by 2.1% in 2020, according to the latest official CSO data, with the pace of growth picking up in the final quarter of the year. Both the monthly increase of 0.8% and the annual increase of 2.1% in December is the fastest pace since July 2019 and comes mainly due to an increase in the number of mortgage approvals and very little stock available in the market to purchase. Despite the impact of the lockdown, the low level of stock for sale, coupled with a significant stock of undrawn mortgages, is likely to put further upward pressure on prices in 2021. Goodbodys forecast for 2021 is prices to increase by 4%. Goodbody Irish Housing Chart Feb 2021

Clonsilla Site Irish property developer Torca Homes has purchased a development site in Clonsilla, West Dublin for €2.15m. The sale price is 43% higher than the €1.5m which was the price quoted by the joint sale agents Sherry Fitzgerald and Cushman & Wakefield. The site known as “The Lodge” is across the road from the Clonsilla train station and extends to 1.2 acres. A feasibility study prepared by HKR Architects, indicated that it has potential for 63 residential units with surface car parking. That suggests that the price equates to almost €1.8m per acre or €34,127 per apartment unit. The Irish Independent, 11th February

Country Homes According to Sherry Fitzgerald, pent up demand during lockdown created a record breaking run of activity in Country Homes during the summer and autumn of 2020. Their Country Homes, Farms and Estates division sold 30 high end country homes last year for between €800k-€5million, despite the restrictions on movement during Covid. The desire for more space and rural living, and the success of remote working, has driven increased demand from Irish buyers looking to move away from the cities, along with expats looking to move home.  The Business Post, 14th February



Rohan Holdings Rohan Holdings, who are currently building 120k sq.ft of industrial and logistics space at Dublin Airport Logistics Park (DALP), has secured a tenant for part of the new development. The development is split into two buildings: the 68,815 sq.ft Cardinal House and 51,288 sq.ft Crane House. Rohan has secured a tenant for the latter property in advance of its scheduled completion in the final quarter of this year. The Irish Times understands that Fisher Scientific Ireland, a subsidiary of US-headquartered life science specialists, the Thermo Fisher Scientific Group, has agreed to occupy Crane House in its entirety on a 10-year term-certain lease at a rent of €10.45 per sq. ft. Separately, it is understood that Cardinal House, which is under construction currently, has attracted a significant level of interest from a number of potential occupiers. The Irish Times, 10th February



UCD Student Accommodation  Colbeam Limited, an Irish company backed by British developer Hollybrook Homes, is planning to develop a major student accommodation facility on a site behind Our Lady’s Grove school on Goatstown Road, Dublin 14. The proposed development is only 850m from UCD’s campus and will be able to accommodate 698 bed spaces and a range of facilities located in eight blocks and will be called Grove Court. In 2017 it was reported that the Religious Sisters of Jesus and Mary, who owned Our Lady’s Grove, had sold a 5.3-acre site beside the school for around €13 million to Durkan Estates (c€2.5m per acre). The Business Post, 14th February 

AIB Loan Sale It is reported in the Irish Times that Apollo and Lone Star are the final bidders to purchase a portfolio of home loans from AIB which were originally worth €1bn. The loan sale named Project Oak was originally supposed to be launched early last year but due to COVID-19 it was postponed and launched late last year. The preferred bidder is expected to be announced within the coming weeks. The Irish Times, 10th February

Clancy Quay, Dublin 8 Kennedy Wilson has announced two new commercial lettings at their Clancy Quay development. The first lease is to Safari Childcare who will take 8,500 sq. ft in the Ridge building on a 20-year lease, while the second deal will see BWG, trading as Eurospar taking a 20-year lease on 6,400 sq. ft of space on the ground floor of the Watchtower building. The fitout of the Safari unit has commenced with the facility expected to be open by August. Clancy Quay is the largest PRS development in Ireland with 875 units. Kennedy Wilson own 50% with the remaining interest owned by Axa Investment Managers as part of a joint venture between the parties involving 1,173 units across three of Kennedy Wilson’s Dublin PRS schemes – Clancy Quay, the Alliance building on South Lotts Road in Dublin 4, and Sandford Lodge in Ranelagh, Dublin 6. The Irish Times, 10th February

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