€500m spent buying up hotels in just 3 months
HOTEL sales are booming with a record number changing hands in the first three months of the year.
More hotels were sold in the first quarter than during the whole of last year, according to commercial property consultants CBRE.
It has released new figures which show that over €500m of hotel sales were made.
The first quarter of the year saw the highest quarterly volume of hotel sales ever achieved in Ireland, it said, with 25 individual properties totalling over half a billion euro between them trading in 17 individual transactions in the quarter.
Paul Collins, executive director of the hotel and licensed division of CRBE said that 64 hotel sales concluded in Ireland in 2014, totalling over €422.5m, compared to 33 hotel sales totalling €160m in 2013.
"We expect 2015 to be our busiest year on record for hotel transactions in Ireland," he said.
The property consultants said that a number of notable hotel sales are still underway, including The Crystal Collection - seven Irish hotel properties with a combined 835 bedrooms - which CBRE is currently selling. The provincial hotels are guiding at €35m and are generating "considerable interest", the body said.
Among the recent high-profile transactions was the sale of Adare Manor Hotel and Golf Resort in Co Limerick to JP McManus for €30m.
Contracts have also been signed for the sale of Temple Bar Hotel in Dublin city centre.
CBRE said that in addition to confirmation of record Irish tourism numbers in 2014 and plans to grow this by more than six per cent to 7.7 million visitors this year, latest performance figures for the hotel sector confirm that occupancy rates were up year-on-year in all locations.
It comes as figures released recently showed that hotel prices in Ireland increased by 10pc last year to an average of €103-a-night. The Hotels.com price index found that Dublin had experienced the highest rise in prices, up 13pc year on year.