AN AMERICAN man has purchased the 295-acre Mellon Stud in Kildimo, County Limerick, for close to its asking price of €4.75m.
The property was sold through William Montgomery agents in Co Down, but a source said that its listing in the Property Price Register as selling for €1.6m was “incorrect”, and that it sold for “much nearer to the asking price.”
The register, which includes the sale prices of all homes across the country since 2010, has in the past listed the sale prices for multi-million euro houses on expansive lands - but does not take into account the value of the surrounding lands sold.
The sales of houses only go through the register for stamp duty purposes, while land is sold in a separate contract.
Other sources estimated that the land alone at Mellon Stud could be worth over €3m, based on the average value of agricultural land, at around €10,000 per acre.
A recent land price survey put the average price of agricultural land in county Limerick at €10,231/acre in 2012, the first increase in six years.
Perched on a hilltop, with stunning views overlooking the Shannon estuary, Mellon Stud, which dates back to the 18th century, is situated on 295 acres, and includes a four-bedroom mansion, along with three cottages, 75 stables, indoor and outdoor walking areas for horses, and offices.
Built by John Westropp in the 1780s, it was set up as a stud farm in the 1970s and the previous owners ran it as a private centre for their own horses and as a stallion station, before embarking on extensive renovations.
Kilfrush stud in Knocklong was also sold recently for an undisclosed sum to David Ryan of Aran Bloodstock, representing Qatari interests.
Mr Ryan manages the racing interests of Mubarak Al Naemi, who owns high-class sprinter Hamza and last year’s Royal Lodge Stakes third Al Waab.
The 300-acre stud recently sold all of its stock, including Coronation Stakes and Prix Jacques le Marois winner Immortal Verse, her dam and her offspring, to US investors Charles Noell and John Moores, following the death of one of the stakeholders in Kilfrush last year.
The Texans, who operate under the banner Merriebelle Stable, purchased more than 30 horses, compromised of broodmares, foals, yearlings, and horses in training from Kilfrush earlier this year.
Founded in 1971, the stud farm bred 80 stakes winners, including Last Tycoon and Whipper, and such was its reputation that US President Richard Nixon stayed in Kilfrush House for several nights in 1970.
A total of 52 properties sold in Limerick last month, according to the register. No entries have been made for September to date. A total of 495 properties have sold to date in Limerick this year.
The most expensive homes sold were in Ballyclough, on the North Circular Road, Crecora and the Golf Links Road in Castletroy.