It is rather investment from technology companies like Google, banks like Deutsche Bank and healthcare firms like Novartis - attracted by Ireland's lower corporation tax rate and a young, well-educated and English-speaking population – that creates new work and benefits the broader economy, Barry O'Leary, chief executive of IDA Ireland, told CNBC.
"Buying up assets is not necessarily what brings additional investment into Ireland," he said. "If you look at activity that's adding value to the real economy, look at recent announcements from multinationals."
The pipeline for the first half of 2014 also looks promising, with further investment from young internet-based companies like TripAdvisor and Airbnb expected this year.
Yet Ireland's economic turmoil is far from over.
Youth unemployment of nearly 25 percent in November 2013 has come down from 29 percent at the same time in 2012, but is still above the euro zone average - and does not including the number of young people who have emigrated.
Debt levels also remain high, with nonfinancial debt more than four times annual gross domestic product (GDP) in 2012. This includes debts for nonfinancial businesses, households and nonprofits of more than three times GDP – suggesting that the average Irish business and consumer is still struggling under hefty debt, and vulnerable to any rise in interest rates on repaying that debt.
Even Tuesday's much-feted bond sale was met with cynicism from some.
"It's very important that Ireland borrows money so we can keep paying back the money we borrowed to pay back the money we didn't borrow," Declan Ganley, one of the best-known opponents of the Irish bailout, told CNBC.
"This is part of the price of getting out of the huge mistakes that Ireland made in the banking bailout and accepting the terms that were imposed upon them by the ECB and the European Commission."
- By CNBC's Catherine Boyle. Twitter: @cboylecnbc.