Cambridge’s Tamburlaine Hotel sells for £55m

Main Photo: The Tamburlaine Hotel, soon to become The Clayton

Date: November  2019

Location: Station Road, Cambridge, England, UK

Name: The Clayton Hotel Cambridge

No. of Keys: 155

Seller: O’Callaghan Collection

Buyer: Luxury hotel developer O’Callaghan Collection has sold a hotel in Cambridge for £55m. The Irish family business has sold the freehold to the 155-bedroom The Tamburlaine in Cambridge to the Brentford-based Ability Group in an off-market transaction. The hotel was sold with vacant possession, and agents said it attracted strong interest from institutions and owner-occupiers.

The Ability Group has subsequently agreed a 30-year FRI (full repairing and insuring) lease with Dalata, who will rebrand the hotel as Clayton Hotel Cambridge. The Tamburlaine is the first UK hotel from O’Callaghan Collection, which owns four hotels in Dublin and one in Gibraltar.

Located in the heart of the Station area hub, the four-star hotel has 155 bedrooms, a restaurant, bar, plus extensive conference and meeting facilities. It features a double height lobby.

It was created by Ireland-based O’Callaghan Hotels, who bought the land and made the project into its first hotel in the UK.

Dermot Crowley, deputy CEO of business development and finance for Dalata, said:“Cambridge has been a priority target city for our Clayton brand, and I am delighted that we have secured such a high-quality, modern hotel in the centre of the city.

“The acquisition of the leasehold interest of this hotel is another important step in our stated strategy of expanding our Maldron and Clayton brands in key cities across the UK. The property is an ideal fit for our Clayton brand, under which we now operate nine hotels across seven cities in the UK.

“We look forward to getting to work immediately, with the existing hotel management team, to bring Dalata hospitality to the visitors and residents of Cambridge.”

Dublin-based Dalata Hotel Group plc was founded in 2007 and listed as a plc in 2014. The company has a strategy of owning or leasing its hotels and also has a small number of management contracts. The group’s portfolio now consists of 30 owned hotels, 11 leased hotels and three management contracts with a total of 9,201 bedrooms.

In addition to this, the group is currently developing nine new hotels and has plans to extend two of its existing hotels, with a total of 2,399 bedrooms due to open over the next three years. This will bring the total number of bedrooms in Dalata to more than 11,600. Dalata now has close to 5,000 employees. For the first six months of 2019, Dalata reported revenue of €201.9million and a profit after tax of €32.7million.

Speaking to the Cambridge Independent, Dalata said it expects to change the branding from Tamburlaine – named after a Christopher Marlowe play – to ‘Clayton Hotel Cambridge’ within the first quarter of 2020. The hotel management is expected to remain, confirmed a spokesperson.

“The plan is to grow the business of the hotel, there are no redundancies in the current business plan for the hotel,” added the spokesperson.

“We plan to invest further in the property and operate under our Clayton brand as a full four-star hotel. Clayton is already Ireland’s leading four-star hotel brand and we already operate Clayton’s in London– Chiswick, Cricklewood & City of London, Birmingham, Cardiff, Leeds and Manchester Airport in the UK.

“Our current pipeline in the UK includes Clayton’s in Glasgow, Manchester and Bristol. We will invest in the current restaurant and operate as part of the overall hotel.”

A reconfiguration of the internal layout of the hotel will result in an additional five bedrooms.

Price: £55m

Price per Key: £354,838

THPT Comment: Interesting move for Ability, owners of some fourteen hotels, under brands such as Hilton…a 30-year lease is a different step for Andreas Panayiotou and his team.

First Seen: The Cambridge Independent

The Hotel Property Team (THPT) is a small group of highly experienced business professionals. Between us, we provide a range of skills and experience which is directly relevant to those involved in the hotel property market.

For more information – Visit or email