Ross Duncan enjoys a cool ale at his watering hole, the Royal Hotel, for sale at a starting price of $3.25 million.
Ross Duncan enjoys a cool ale at his watering hole, the Royal Hotel, for sale at a starting price of $3.25 million. Craig Warhurst

Pubs change hands

WHETHER the glass is half full or half empty, there is no denying the flurry of activity within Gympie's hotel industry right now, with the sale of the Phoenix Hotel last week, three hotels for sale in the central business district and unconfirmed rumours of a Dan Murphy outlet opening near the CBD.

The Freemasons Hotel, which went into receivership last year, will go under the hammer in Brisbane on June 14, and has already drawn plenty of interest.

Ray White Hotels' consultant Leon Alaban said this week the auction will take place at 123 Eagle St, in conjunction with the auction of the Bayview Hotel at Redcliffe, which has the same owner and is also in receivership.

"We are only very early into the marketing campaign but the Freemasons has already drawn solid interest," Mr Alaban said.

"Generally, receivership sales attract a lot of interest."

Billy's hotelier Lesley Mitchell will be attending the auction and has made no secret of her desire to move the most expensive part of her business - the gaming machines - out of the flood-prone part of Mary St.

Across the road from Billy's, expressions of interest in the sale of Charlies Hotel and its adjoining freehold investment properties closed late last month and Mr Alaban said there had been more than 30 inquiries about the properties.

Ray White Hotels was still in negotiation with a short-list of those inquiring parties, he said.

The hotel and its associated properties take in 21 tenants and include three detached bottleshops.

These all create an annual turnover of more than $8 million and provide a combined rent income of $236,000.

A few doors down from Billy's, the Royal Hotels remains for sale at a starting price of $3.25 million.

And the sale of the Phoenix Hotel to the Shoobridge Hotel Group - also known as Star Hotels Australia, which also has the lease on the Jockey Club Hotel - settled last Monday for an undisclosed sum. It will now be managed by Murray Bradley and his existing staff.

While Gympie Regional Council said this week it had received no planning applications or inquiries about a Dan Murphy store opening in Gympie, it too had heard the rumours.

A spokesman for the Australian Hotel, at the corner of Lady Mary Tce and Apollonian Vale, would not deny nor confirm that it was focus of the proposed development.

Gympie Times


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