Kelly & Co Hotels has announced the quick-draw sale of Old Bar Tavern on the NSW mid-north coast to a partnership headed by growing regional hotelier Nick Quinn.

Old Bar Tavern is found around two hours north of Newcastle, on a massive 5.74-ha site, said to be one of the largest landholdings anywhere on the NSW coast.

A well-patronised country pub, it provides public bar, gaming, bistro and drive-through bottleshop, and benefits from its nearest hotel competitors being more than 15 kilometres away, in Taree.

Since purchasing it in 2018, Rodney ‘Ned’ Kelly has invested and improved trade. This has included a recent renovation to the gaming room, which currently has 18 machines, three under lease, and approval for another five.

Weekly revenue at the Tavern is reportedly north of $117k, and is said to be following the same trajectory as the growing local population.

Having amassed a sizeable portfolio of regional opportunities, Kelly recently decided to scale back and focus on core assets. This has seen him sell the Belmore Hotel in Scone in July, and list both the Centennial Hotel in Gulgong and the former Amble Inn, now Corindi Beach Hotel, in September.

Noting what he describes as Old Bar’s tremendous appeal, Kelly is closer to focusing on his remaining projects.

“It’s a terrific pub in an outstanding community, and whilst I am nostalgic about the sale, this result supports our strategy for consolidation in 2023.”

Taking up the challenge is a partnership of Nicholas Quinn and Jesse Overvliet, adding to their growing footprint and confidence in the area, having acquired yet another pub in Taree last year, in the Manning River Hotel for circa $20 million.

Punctuating a slow quarter in pub real estate transactions, The Tav was reportedly on the market for only five days, in a campaign by JLL Hotels’ Kate MacDonald and Greg Jeloudev, who say it was the fastest on-market transaction for 2023 anywhere in NSW.

“Opportunities on large landholdings with a diversified mix of trade and genuine operational upside are still garnering interest from astute operators with long-term investment horizons,” notes MacDonald.

“The sale of Old Bar Tavern highlights the market’s resilience even after a further interest rate hike on Melbourne Cup Day.”

Image: supplied
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