Belfast Telegraph

Clayton owner vies for a share of former 'Burlo'

By Margaret Canning

Irish hotel firm Dalata plc, which owns Northern Ireland's Maldron and Clayton hotels, is in talks to acquire part of the former Burlington Hotel in Dublin.

The landmark Ballsbridge hotel is now a Double Tree Hilton.

Yesterday Dalata announced it is in exclusive discussions about acquiring an interest in the venue, formerly dubbed the 'Burlo'.

It has 502 rooms and has long been a popular hotel for Ireland rugby fans from Northern Ireland attending games at the Aviva Stadium.

The company said it was in talks with another party about buying the five-star venue.

In a statement to the Irish Stock Exchange, Dalata said that "in collaboration with another party who is negotiating to purchase the property, (it) has entered into exclusive discussions to acquire operating interests in and to commit to a leasehold interest in the hotel".

The statement added that the deal was subject to further due diligence and that there was no guarantee it would go ahead.

It would also be subject to the approval of the Republic's competition watchdog, the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission.

The venue was bought by developer Bernard McNamara for €288m (£345m) in 2007 - and sold for €67m (£57m) to private equity house Blackstone in 2012.

Speaking at the time, Paul Collins of CBRE Hotels said it was "probably the most important sale of any hotel in Ireland since the banking crisis here in September 2008".

Dalata also owns The Maldron Hotel at Belfast International Airport, and also bought the former Holiday Inn in Belfast's Ormeau Avenue, which it renamed the Clayton Hotel.

It is now Ireland's biggest hotel operator, with 40 hotels which it owns, leases or manages. It was founded in 2007 by Pat McCann.

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