Dromoland Castle profits rise to €1.4m

PROFITS before tax at the five-star Dromoland Castle hotel in Co Clare increased to €1.4 million from €1m a year earlier.

According to newly filed accounts for the company covering the year to the end of December 2007, gross profits increased from €11.2m to €11.9m on sales of €16m.

Shareholders in the castle include Tony O’Reilly. His son Gavin sits on the board.

The company said in the accounts: “Despite the challenging market conditions and ongoing over supply of hotel product, the trading performance for the year was strong.

“Trading profits were on par with 2006 (before exceptional operating expense) and were achieved by virtue of flexibility in the business model.”

According to the accounts a consultancy fee of €450,700 was paid out to Hallmark Management, up from €366,152 paid the previous year.

The accounts show Hallmark Management is controlled by Mark Nolan, who is a director of the company.

Money paid out for wages and salaries came to €5.2m in the year, up from €4.7m in 2006.

Pension costs also increased to €82,110 from €80,242 the previous year.

The firm operates a defined contribution scheme for senior employees.

Shareholders will split a total dividend of €300,000. The dividend was held at the same level as in 2006.

In June 2004, when US president George W Bush visited Ireland to attend and EU/US summit, he stayed at Dromoland Castle.

The hotel’s website was advertising bed and breakfast for €350 per room per night yesterday.


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