Re: Re: Arnotts
The banks will find the holdings difficult to sell as length of lease and strength of company on the lease are the only drivers of value in this market. The pre-dominance of vacant offices and retail units let on temporary/short term leases to retailers no one has heard of outside Dublin leaves the banks in a position that they are much better holding out and taking a long view on the entire holding. I agree with Graham on Arnotts being the daddy of Dublin department stores and I agree with KB on Debenhams; Arnotts reminds me a lot of House of Fraser in terms of delivering a wide range of products mostly operated through concessions in a very pleasant fit out; why I prefer Arnotts to HoF is that Arnotts will also allow you to buy a bargain.
When you are that good at retailing why throw it all away to follow the herd in terms of redevelopment taking undue focus. Arnotts were never going to build a better centre than Chartered Land as they didn’t have the track record of Dundrum and simply didn’t have a site capable of delivering 50,000 sq m of retail boxes in MSU format. I hope that a revised proposal comes back for this site that focuses on a leisure element i.e. the best terrace of restaurants and cafes done to date in Dublin that can cater to a more sophisticated crowd than Temple Bar. Above all this site needs to be developed sustainably which will allow the developers to make money as it is a seriously strategic location that when fully let will deliver very healthy ITZA rates per sq m and they can get some height through the use of set backs / graduated internal punctuations on the basis of it being a very deep site. I would look at Goldman Sachs Int offices on Fleet St London and the way they used the former Art Deco Period Daily Telegraph Offices to mask a very high end office scheme in terms of the Indo Building.
Now the City Council have an excuse to stop neglecting Middle Abbey Street