Dublin pub sales hit €33m as fa­mous Old Stand se­cures €3m

Irish Independent - Business Week - - TECHNOLOGY - Donal Buck­ley

The sale of the lease­hold in­ter­est in the Old Stand Pub in Dublin city cen­tre brings to 18 the num­ber of bars sold in Dublin dur­ing the first 10 months of this year, with a com­bined value of €33m.

The lat­est of these sees Dublin pub­li­cans Ea­mon and Michael O’Mal­ley pur­chase the lease­hold in­ter­est in The Old Stand for a sum be­lieved to be around €3m. The ven­dors, the Do­ran broth­ers, are also sell­ing their other city cen­tre pub, the fa­mous Davy Byrnes, which has a €6m price tag.

Both of them are con­sid­ered two of Dublin’s fore­most up­mar­ket pubs as they are lo­cated close to the prime Grafton and Wick­low shop­ping streets.

Spe­cial­ist pub agent John P Younge, who is han­dling both sales, ex­plains that the Old Stand lease­hold sale arises from a 35-year lease from March 1997 which has about 14 years to run. The land­lord, Dublin City Coun­cil, re­cently se­cured a 16.7pc rent in­crease to €122,500 and there are five-year rent re­views.

The pur­chasers will also have rights to renew the lease on sim­i­lar terms to the ex­ist­ing lease and these re­newal rights are one of the fac­tors which en­hances the value of the lease. Lo­cated on the cor­ner of Ex­che­quer and Saint An­drew Street at the junc­tion with trendy South Wil­liam Street, the prop­erty rises to four storeys and com­prises bar ar­eas ex­tend­ing to 98 sq m (1,054 sq ft) on the ground floor, a base­ment with cel­lar and kitchen ex­tend­ing to 61 sq m (659 sq ft) as well as three up­per floors each with about 93 sq m (1,000 sq ft) of stor­age.

Pur­chasers, the O’Mal­ley broth­ers, al­ready own a num­ber of Dublin pubs in­clud­ing The Yacht in Clon­tarf and The Au­to­bahn on Glas­nevin Av­enue.

Mean­while Mr Younge has set Novem­ber 22 next as the clos­ing date for best and fi­nal of­fers for Davy Byrnes at 21 Duke Street, Dublin, a two-storey, over-base­ment premises which is be­ing sold as a share sale.

Al­most all of the prop­erty is held on a 900-year lease dat­ing from 1991 at a rent of £10, or less than €13 a year. A sec­tion of a rear pas­sage­way is held on a 50-year lease at €20,000 a year dat­ing from 2013.

Both the ground and first floor of the premises ex­tend to around 139 sq m (1,500 sq ft) each while its base­ment ex­tends to about half that floor area.

John Ryan of CBRE says that one of the fea­tures of this year’s pub mar­ket has been the sale of bars for al­ter­na­tive uses. He cites the im­pend­ing sale of Kiely’s of Don­ny­brook for which Knight Frank had been guid­ing €5m and which has been mar­keted as a de­vel­op­ment site.

Mean­while in Mount Mer­rion the de­vel­op­ment com­pany Oak­mount, headed by Paddy McKillen Jnr and Matt Ryan, just this week brought an­other pub/restau­rant — Kennedy’s Bar and Union Café — to the mar­ket as part of a larger de­vel­op­ment prop­erty which in­cludes the for­mer Stella Cinema, also known as the for­mer Flana­gan’s fur­ni­ture store and car park.

With frontage onto Deer Park and two other roads, the 0.76 hectare (1.88 acre) site is con­sid­ered to have po­ten­tial for up to 193 apart­ments and 282 sq m (3,035 sq ft) of com­mer­cial space. Knight Frank is guid­ing more than €32m for it.

Subur­ban pubs on large sites have come back into the crosshairs of devel­op­ers fol­low­ing the up­surge in de­mand for res­i­den­tial prop­er­ties in­clud­ing build-to-rent projects.

For in­stance, Brady’s Castle­knock was sold with plan­ning per­mis­sion for 36 apart­ments for more than €3m, and The Black Horse Inn, Inchicore for more than €2.5m.

The big­gest pub deal of the year so far also had de­vel­op­ment po­ten­tial and in­cludes in­vest­ment prop­er­ties. Loy­ola Group, headed by Brian O’Mal­ley, bought Baker’s Cor­ner li­censed premises for well over its €5m guide price.

To date Loy­ola has fo­cused on the pub and restau­rant trade rather than prop­erty de­vel­op­ment.

John Ryan who han­dled the sale says Baker’s Cor­ner pub ex­tends to 1,180 sq m (12,700 sq ft) and com­prises a ground floor lounge bar, pub­lic bar, a cater­ing kitchen and an off-li­cence. Its first floor ac­com­mo­dates a func­tion room, stores and of­fices and it also has a cel­lar. Out­side is a smok­ing area and car park with over 100 spa­ces.

Also in­cluded in this sale was The Forge in­vest­ment prop­erty com­pris­ing three re­tail units, two of­fice units and three apart­ments gen­er­at­ing more than €150,000 in an­nual rents. One of the ten­ants, Paddy Power book­mak­ers, pays an­nual rent of €80,000.

Loy­ola saw off pub­li­cans, devel­op­ers and in­vestors who were also in­ter­ested in the 0.5 hectare (1.235 acre) prop­erty which is zoned ‘Neigh­bour­hood Cen­tre’.

John Younge says an­other fea­ture of the mar­ket has been de­vel­op­ment ac­tiv­ity by pub­li­cans them­selves as some, such as Gleesons of Boot­er­stown, have added on be­d­rooms and some have be­come inns.

Char­lie Chawke, who has nine pubs, said in an in­ter­view re­cently that he plans

Liq­uid mar­ket:

The lease­hold in­ter­est in the Old Stand (far left) has been ac­quired by the O’Mal­ley Broth­ers, while Davy Byrnes (left) is on the mar­ket at €6m to de­velop a ho­tel and apart­ments at The Goat pub site in south Dublin.

De­spite the re­turn of devel­op­ers and in­vestors to the mar­ket, the num­ber of pubs sell­ing this year looks set to fall be­low the 31 which sold in 2017 and the 35 in 2016 when turnover topped €67m fol­low­ing the sale of the Cam­den de Luxe ho­tel com­plex.

Nev­er­the­less the av­er­age price has in­creased by about 50pc from an av­er­age of €1.18m in 2017 to €1.775m so far this year.

John Ryan says this in­crease is en­cour­ag­ing and also re­flects the bet­ter trad­ing con­di­tions be­ing ex­pe­ri­enced by es­tab­lished pub­li­cans.

An­other south Dublin pub to sell this year saw a group of pri­vate in­vestors headed up by John Martin ac­quire their first pub, Stil­lor­gan Or­chard, for well over CBRE’s €3.25m guide price.

Renowned for its thatched roof, the mainly sin­gle storey premises ex­tends to around 650 sq m (7,000 sq ft) which ac­com­mo­dates a lounge bar, cafe bar, a large cater­ing kitchen and stor­age ar­eas, two smok­ing ar­eas and a car park with ca­pac­ity for 50 cars.

In­vest­ment pubs to sell were the Ea­gle House Glasthule and Karma Stone, Wex­ford Street.

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