Rathfarnham’ s Loreto Abbey Sold to the Department of Education

Loreto Abbey, a well-know 291 year old Georgian building in Rathfarnham, has been sold to the Department of Education.

The sale was handled by property consultants, Savills, on behalf of the Receiver, David Carson of Deloitte.

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The building is located on a site of approximately 4.5 acres in a sought-after residential area of Rathfarnham in South Dublin.

The Department of Education plans to use the site for the new Irish Language post-primary school Gaelcholáiste an Phiarsaigh which is due to open in September 2014.

The Abbey – where Mother Teresa studied English – is steeped in history. The main building was formally known as Rathfarnham House and was built in 1725 by William Palliser, the only son of the Right Reverend William Palliser. In 1821 Archbishop Murray of Dublin purchased the property for the Irish Branch of the Institute of the Blessed Virgin Mary. From 1823 to 1999 it was operated as a boarding school.

Following its closure in 1999, the building and surrounding site was acquired by Riversmith Limited, who developed the adjoining residential complex in the grounds. The conversion of Loreto Abbey to a nursing home was part of the overall Masterplan for the site. However, this phase of the development did not proceed.

There were extensive renovations carried out on the buildings to weather proof the fabric prior to the launch of the property on the Open Market in September 2013. Savills had a wide range of enquiries ranging from developers and speculators to owner occupiers and institutional bodies.

Jill Horan of Savills, who handled the sale on behalf of Mr. Carson of Deloitte, said, “We are delighted to have been involved in such a unique sale, and good news story, which will see Loreto Abbey restored it to its former purpose – a school. The main building is one of the most attractive examples of Georgian architecture in the Dublin region and the buildings and surrounding site lend themselves perfectly for use as an educational facility.”

The sale of Loreto Abbey comprised of a number of buildings, including, the main Georgian house, a church building, north and south gate lodges, and a concert hall, which, in total, comprised of 92,860 sq. ft.