Westin bought by Lalco and US billionaire

The Irish-owned Lalco Hotel Group has made its third property acquisition in conjunction with US billionaire businessman, John Malone, via the purchase of Dublin’s five-star Westin Hotel.

Westin bought by Lalco and US billionaire

It marks the third time that Mr Malone and Lalco have teamed up, with the pair having bought the four-star Trinity Capital Hotel on Dublin’s Pearse Street last summer and the four-star Hilton Dublin Hotel on Charlemont Place in March of this year.

“We believe that The Westin Dublin fits exceptionally well with the profile of our other properties, in terms of location and iconic status and our objective is to maintain its position as one of Ireland’s leading five-star hotels,” Lalco Group director, John Lally said.

The acquisition is expected to be completed by the end of next month, after which the Westin will be operated by Lalco under a franchise agreement with Westin Hotels & Resorts. Under the terms of the deal, the current lease on the Westmoreland Street hotel — currently owned by Starwood Hotels & Resorts — will end and the property will move into the franchise agreement.

Mr Lally said that the partnership Lalco — which, by itself, also owns the Hilton Dublin Kilmainham, the Harbour Hotel in Galway, Limerick’s Strand Hotel; the five-star Glenlo Abbey Hotel and Golf Club in Co Galway and the Barnacles Holiday Hostels in Galway and Dublin — has struck up with Mr Malone has proven to be “extremely successful”.

No transaction figure, for the Westin deal, has been disclosed, but it is understood that the partnership paid in excess of the asking price for the property.

Mr Malone is chairman of international communications giant, Liberty Global — which last week bought BSkyB’s 6.4% stake in ITV.

He also has stakes in home shopping television channel, QVC; Virgin Media and Expedia. Mr Malone is also the largest individual land-owner in the US, owning nearly 2.2 million acres in Maine, Maryland, New Mexico, Colorado and Wyoming.

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