Waterford pub dating back to Famine times up for sale

West Waterford’s famed Seanacaí pub dates to Famine times, 1845, and is now for sale, as a bar and restaurant property, along with 12 purpose-built holiday cottages which adjoin the site of a Famine memorial at Dungarvan’s Ballinalira, Pulla Cross.
Waterford pub dating back to Famine times up for sale

The entire property is just off the main Cork-Waterford N25, and is a previous winner of Heritage Pub of the Year and Black & White Pub of the Year awards. It got its first licence in 1845, and a room was added very shortly afterwards to accommodate mourners who came to bury their dead in the adjacent Famine graveyard Reilig an tSléibhe.

Trading at the bar and restaurant ceased within recent weeks, and the Seanacaí/Seanachai is now for sale by private treaty, via John Ryan of CBRE in Dublin, acting jointly with Eamonn Spratt of REA Spratt in Dungarvan. They describe it as a landmark premises.

Under a dense thatch and very attractive externally and with an appropriate but upgraded traditional interior, the Seanacaí bar/restaurant is guided at €450,000, and is popular with visitors as well as locals. The 12 holiday homes can be bought as part of the entire lot, or individually at €95,000, giving a total valuation of €1.59 million. However, they are restricted to holiday home usage only — they cannot be used as permanent, year-round dwellings under planning stipulations.

In addition to the holiday homes and bar/restaurant, there is what’s described as a small development site of under 230 sq m which (subject to planning) could add a craft shop or heritage centre (the adjacent 1847 Famine graveyard, Reilig an tSléibhe, has three monuments as well as common and unmarked graves). Retained features of the 1845-founded thatched bar include flagstone floors, open turf fires, bar counter and fittings, and after extension there’s now restaurant seating for 80 covers, plus part-covered courtyard.

The Seanacaí bar near Dungarvan comes with 12 holiday cottages.
The Seanacaí bar near Dungarvan comes with 12 holiday cottages.

The 12 purpose-built and fully furnished holiday homes have been let as four-star self-catering accommodation, and are in two clusters, each of six c 131 sq m two-storey builds, and each able to accommodate six.

CBRE and REA Spratt say the sale “offers an exceptional opportunity to acquire a landmark hospitality business”, noting its proximity to Dungarvan where the new Greenway route leads on to Waterford city, while the Ireland Ancient East trail also is expected to boost tourism activity in the south east.

Location is near beaches, the Ring Gaeltacht, the Comeraghs and hillwalks. The joint agents add: “The bar and restaurant was trading until recently, and a satisfactory level of turnover was generated from the business. However, there is also ample scope to reinstate, improve, expand and develop the business levels and exploit the key selling points of the business.”

The sale is in lots, one being the entire, Lot 2, or separately as the Seanacaí bar and restaurant, plus Lot 3, the 12 holiday homes as a portfolio/group, or individually.

Meanwhile, also just listed this week with Eamonn Spratt is the family-run Quills bar, a traditional two-storey bar dating to the late 1800s, set on an acre.

A residential licenses premises, it’s two miles from Dungarvan, at the junction of the Killarney/Rosslare N72 and the Dungarvan to Clonmel Road. Guide price is €215,000, and its accommodation include three bedrooms.

Details: CBRE 01-6185500, REA Spratt 058-42211

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