Receiver appointed to Doonbeg resort

A receiver has been appointed to The Lodge at Doonbeg and Doonbeg Golf Club at the invitation of the company’s directors.

The move follows the sale of the Doonbeg golf resort in Co Clare to a US-based property investment firm, South Street Partners, for €70m in June of last year.

The receivers, Luke Charleton and David Hughes of EY, said they are already aware of interest in the property and are hopeful of concluding a sale as a going concern within a short timeframe.

Mr Charleton said that the resort is one of the leading golf destinations in the country.

“The Lodge and its facilities are recognised as one of the premier golf and leisure destinations in Ireland and Europe. The Lodge at Doonbeg and Doonbeg Golf Club will continue to trade as normal with all employment being maintained and suppliers being retained. Additionally, there will be no change in the status of members of Doonbeg Golf Club,” he said.

It is understood the decision to invite in the receivers was taken due to the fact that the company has unsustainable debts.

A family row resulted in the sale of the €70m resort to the US investment firm in June.

The court battle between cousins, chairman and CEO of former owners Kiawah Partners, Charles “Buddy” Darby and Leonard Long, resulted in the sale of the entire portfolio also includes Kiawah Island which staged the 1991 Ryder Cup.

When South Street Partners took over the property, they announced they were “evaluating” overseas holdings.

The resort opened 11 years ago and failed to record a profit. The most recent accounts, for 2011, show the resort’s losses increased to €6.4m in spite of revenues going up by 16% to €10.4m.

The resort in high season employs 245 and Kiawah Partners has invested more than €67m in the project, with planning permission in place for an additional 61 holiday properties.

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