Slieve Donard to get £16m revamp as new owners target lucrative golf market

Slieve Donard to get £16m revamp as new owners target lucrative golf market

The new owners of the the Slieve Donard Resort and Spa are set to carry out a massive refurbishment of the property at a cost of around £16m.

Chicago-based Adventurous Journeys (AJ) Capital Partners purchased the 180-bedroom hotel from Hastings Group last year for £40m.

The Newcastle venue now operates under its Marine & Lawn Hotels & Resorts brand, which can also been seen at three hotel complexes at golf courses in Scotland, including its MacDonald Rusacks hotel at St Andrews.

It is thought the Slieve Donard’s proximity to the world-famous Royal County Down links will see the hotel revamp incorporate the look and feel of its other golf properties, with work due to start later this year and finish by summer 2023.

President Philp Allen said: “Marine & Lawn Hotels & Resorts is a collection of bespoke hotels in the world’s most coveted golf destinations.

“The brand was created with the goal of acquiring timeless assets that offer locals and travellers alike with truly memorable once-in-a-lifetime hospitality experiences.

“We are honoured to now have Slieve Donard Resort & Spa as part of this distinct set of properties. Our team has a deep understanding and respect for the history of the hotel and its connection to the community.

“We are focused on making upgrades that amplify the character of the property with design, food and beverage and amenities that pay homage to the destination’s beauty and rich tradition.

“The team is optimistic about what these updates will bring to the property and travellers.”

Slieve Donard was the flagship hotel for Hastings Hotels after it was bought by late company founder Sir Billy Hastings in 1971. The group now owns six hotels, Belfast’s Europa, Stormont, Grand Central and Culloden, along with the Everglades in Londonderry and the Ballygally near Larne.

Speaking following the Slieve Donard’s sale, Howard Hastings said: “AJ Capital Partners’s acquisition of the Slieve Donard Resort and Spa is encouraging news for hospitality and tourism in Northern Ireland and, in particular, for the burgeoning golf tourism industry here — which has been an important driver of local tourism and shows significant growth potential.”