The hotel market in Northern Ireland has seen a huge rise in sales in 2015, but still lags far behind the South in terms of activity.
A total of nine hotels worth £67.36 million have been sold so far this year, up from just one sold last year worth £4.44 million.
According to the Irish Times, the surge in sales is mostly down to the sale of distressed assets, although there has been a noted rise in confidence among investors.
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Despite the increased investments, the numbers are still dwarfed by those in the Republic, where 118 hotels have been sold since the start of 2014 for a total value of over €1 billion.
US investors are heavily involved in the recent spate of hotel transactions in both the North and South, accounting for 44 per cent of sales in the North. In the Republic, some of the more high-profile sales in recent times, including the InterContinental Ballsbridge and The Westin, have come from American buyers.
“Activity in the hotel market has been extremely encouraging,” says Alex Speers of CBRE in Belfast, adding that a significant number of hotels are in the pipeline for Belfast, including the £30 million redevelopment of Windsor House in the capital.