Belfast Telegraph

Friday 22 August 2014

Portrush hotel in administration

The award-winning Ramada hotel in Portrush, Co Antrim, has been placed in administration

NAMA has appointed administrators to a well-known Northern Ireland hotel.

The Irish Republic's asset management agency took action against the Ramada in Portrush, Co Antrim, which was owned by the Kennedy family. The 69-bedroom hotel has won several awards.

A statement from the administrators, Belfast-based accountancy firm RSM McClure Watters, said: "It is the intention of the administrators to continue trading, and keep this well-known north coast hotel open for business as usual.

"Given the great location, we hope that people will continue to benefit from the hotel's facilities and our immediate objective is to maintain operations and honour bookings. Given the continuation of trade, we look forward to working with the hotel's staff to drive the business forward."

Owner Alistair Kennedy told viewers on the hotel's Facebook site that the action is sad news. He said: "Firstly, the most important thing to point out is that the hotel will continue to trade as normal and we have been assured that all bookings and reservations are safe."

He added: "The Kennedy family, who have owned and operated the hotel for the last 11 years, would like to thank all our customers and friends for the support and custom they have given us over that period of time. Thank you, everyone."

DUP MPs Gregory Campbell and Ian Paisley warned against a NAMA fire sale of properties in Northern Ireland. They said: "The Ramada Hotel in Portrush is a business which is trading successfully in the town with the busiest part of the tourist season still to come.

"Despite this, NAMA has moved to appoint administrators. There are questions as to exactly why they have moved on this individual business. It also raises questions over their intentions towards other properties in Northern Ireland."

They added this must not signal a change of approach from NAMA which, to date, has operated with no major release of properties on to the market.

"It is essential that NAMA meets with individual business owners and Northern Ireland's Finance Minister (Sammy Wilson) to discuss their future intentions in the province and spell out any actions they are taking which could have an impact on the economy here," they said.

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