A question has been raised over plans by US billionaire John Malone to add a new seven-storey 97-bedroom extension to the Hilton hotel in Dublin.
Last month, Dublin City Council gave Mr Malone’s Charlemont Leisure the go-ahead for the plan that will result in the Hilton Dublin City Hotel offering 305 bedrooms if the extension project eventually gets the green light.
The council gave the proposal the go-ahead for the hotel extension which overlooks the Grand Canal in spite of concerns by An Taisce and local residents.
Mr Malone, who is reputed to be the largest landowner in the US, purchased the hotel for around €30m in 2014.
He also owns the Westin Hotel and the Trinity City hotel in Dublin. The planner in the case of the Hilton extension said given the city centre location, the existing height and the previous planning history on the site, the proposed development was considered acceptable.
However, appeals have been lodged against the decision to Bord Pleanála by Harcourt Green Management Ltd and Alvin Price which questioned the plan.
Harcourt Green Management raised a number of concerns over the plan when it was before Dublin City Council.
In its objection, it said that the Hilton plan “will greatly degrade the environmental, amenity and living standard of its (Harcourt Green) residents”.
The objection stated that the proposed extension of the hotel and particularly the northern block is of excessive bulk and scale and should not be allowed.
Harcourt Green resident Alvin Price claimed to the city council that the construction of seven-storeys “would create overshadowing and blocking of sunlight to the apartments by reason of proximity, height and scale of the proposed development”.
The appeal of the decision comes as the Irish Tourist Industry Confederation recently reported a need for 30 extra hotels providing 5,000 rooms in the capital by 2021.
Over the last decade, only three large hotels have been opened. A total of 500 rooms were provided, including 252 rooms at the Gibson, 187 rooms at the Marker and 52 rooms at the Dean on Harcourt St.
Dublin City Council recently gave planning permission for a new four-star hotel on Harcourt Street and a separate hotel plan by Paddy McKillen Jnr for a boutique hotel in Ranelagh.
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