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Killarney hotelier welcomes hotel sales

A member of The Irish Hotels Federation (IHF), Michael Rosney, has welcomed the recent sale of the four star Parknasilla Hotel in Sneem near Killarney for a figure reported to be around €10m, as well as the impending sale of the five star Sheen Falls Lodge in Kenmare for some €5m. Mr Rosney said that these hotel sales showed that, at last, there appears to be some “movement in the industry” after almost five years of decline and stagnation.

Mr Rosney, a member of the council of the Irish Hotels Federation and owner of the Killeen House Hotel in Killarney, welcomed the fact that the hotels would be in private ownership indicating that this would help create a level playing field for other operators in the Killarney area as well as those in other parts of Kerry. Mr Rosney pointed to the fact that, in recent times, it had been difficult for independently run hotels to compete with so-called “zombie hotels” which are under the control of financial institutions. “It has been very frustrating for people who are struggling to survive to be up against hotels that are bank- or NAMA-controlled and are offering breaks and deals they simply can’t compete with.” said Mr Rosney.

In October last year it was reported that the Parknasilla resort had been taken off the market after a satisfactory offer was received by Savills who were handling the sale. It later emerged that the resort was bought by Jacqui Safra, a member of the billionaire Swiss Lebanese banking family, and the hotel is now expected to be open for business again in March.

Staff of the Sheen Falls Lodge were recently told of the change of ownership and the sale is expected to be signed shortly with a UK-based, luxury family hotel group that has a portfolio of manor and castle hotels. Sheen Falls Lodge was developed by Danish shipping entrepreneur Bent Hoyer in the 1980s and has 66 bedrooms and suites and a number of holiday lodges.