Galway businessman Gerry Barrett has handed iconic West of Ireland hotel Ashford Castle and a number of single-unit assets in Galway City over to Bank of Scotland, it was announced yesterday evening.
The move is said to follow months of discussions between the parent company Edward Holdings, owned by Mr Barrett, and the bank.
It is understood that the Mayo venue had been provided to the bank as security and a spokesperson for the company said that the step had been taken to “best preserve the value in the assets” and “in the best interests of all stakeholders”.
Other assets owned by Edward Holdings including the Hotel Meyrick, g Hotel and Eye Cinema will not be affected by the move and a statement from the receivers with regard to the ongoing trading of Ashford Castle is expected in the near future.
Ernst & Young have been appointed receiver over Ashford Castle, while Grant Thornton will act as receiver for the other secured assets.
In a joint statement, Bank of Scotland said it would like to thank Edward Holdings for the “positive way in which it had engaged with them” during the course of discussions.
Edward Holdings acknowledged that, while the decision was “difficult”, it had no impact on the rest of the group and other hotels, retail assets, businesses and operations would continue as normal.
It also noted that in its several years of stewardship of Ashford Castle, it had worked with some of the best and brightest in the Irish hospitality industry and thanked its former colleagues for their diligence and professionalism.