Ryder Cup venue the Belfry is up for sale
The world-renowned golfing hotel and resort the Belfry, which has hosted the Ryder Cup four times, has been put up for sale.
The 324-bedroom hotel, set within a 550-acre resort in Warwickshire, is currently owned by Irish businessman Sean Quinn, who is currently facing bankruptcy in the republic after having his bankruptcy status in Northern Ireland annulled.
It is believed that the Belfry, which is carrying £105m of debt, has been put on the market by its lenders - Bank of Ireland, Barclays and Certus.
Quinn bought the resort in 2005 for £186m from De Vere. However, his plans to redevelop the Belfry and create a new 500-bedroom, five-star resort at a cost of £200m in its place never got off the ground as the Quinn family lost a fortune in the Irish property crash.
Commercial property agent Jones Lang LaSalle Hotels has been appointed to market the resort, which has three 18-hole golf courses - including the Brabazon course on which the Ryder Cup was last played in 2002 - extensive corporate conference and meeting facilities, a spa and newly-refurbished Health & Wellness leisure club, on-site nightclub and the headquarters of the PGA.
Nigel Gray, managing director of the Belfry, said that he was confident that new owners would be found, allowing the hotel and resort to develop and grow.
"The Belfry is a highly profitable business which has just enjoyed a successful 2011, with figures up on 2010 levels," he explained. "The team here is highly experienced and it has very much been business as usual in the past few months with a very encouraging pipeline of business for the coming months. That will continue during this process.
George Nicholas of Jones Lang LaSalle Hotels, said: "The Belfry is an iconic golf destination, combining an internationally recognised brand with a successfully trading business, and quality sales of this nature rarely come to the market. We expect significant international interest to be attracted among buyers from across the globe as investors bid to secure this rare opportunity.
"Furthermore, we are already seeing interest being expressed from across the globe, particularly from Asia, where investors are seeking to capitalise on the relatively low British pound."
Last year the Belfry was named England's Leading Golf Resort at the World Travel Awards.
De Vere sells Belfry but retains management contract >>
Ryder Cup venue the Belfry to be pulled down and rebuilt >>
The Belfry to be redeveloped as exclusive golf course hotel >>
By Janet Harmer
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