The Signature Group has been unveiled as the buyer of the historic Metropolitan Hotel of Bendigo, with a new instalment of The Sporting Globe heralding a new era for sports enthusiasts in the regional hub.

Popularly known as The Metro, the two-storey pub has been a landmark of Bendigo for over 100 years. It is set to undergo a sympathetic transformation into a diverse 1,000sqm venue catering for more than 550 patrons.

“We are tremendously excited to introduce The Sporting Globe to Bendigo,” offered CEO James Sinclair.

“Having originated in Geelong and established a nationwide presence, including thriving venues in Ballarat, expanding into Bendigo was a natural progression for our brand.”

TSG plans to integrate into the Bendigo community, forming partnerships with businesses, sports clubs and community groups, while employing around 40 locals.

The operation came to market in 2023, as long-term owner Andrew Lethlean hung up the hat after 22 years. It offered a prominent corner position in the heart of Bendigo’s CBD, close to the new Bendigo ‘GovHub’.

The post-pandemic migration brought impressive growth in Bendigo, making it one of Victoria’s fastest-growing regional economies, expected to reach 200K residents in coming decades.

Accordingly, a sale campaign through JLL Hotels’ Lachlan Persley and Will Connolly generated a range of enquiries, reportedly including both existing operators and first-time entrants. While a sale announcement in May did not disclose the buyer, noting it had been acquired by “one of the nation’s most prolific hospitality groups”, the agents are privy to what is to come.

“We can assure the people of Bendigo that they will be provided with an incredible venue, with their impending arrival to the region proving yet again the value some of our industry’s largest operators are identifying in our regional markets,” remarked Persley.

Adding to the group’s collection of a dozen locations across Victoria, The Sporting Globe in Bendigo will boast the typically tech-savvy fit-out and impressive array of features.

There will be over 50 high-definition screens, a state-of-the-art function space on the upper level, booth seating, and the signature Sporting Globe dining experience. Outside will offer a fully weatherproof beer garden dedicated to sports viewing, with a private bar and expansive views.

TSG say they are aiming for an opening in the first half of 2025.

“This establishment promises to redefine Bendigo’s sports and dining landscape, offering an unmatched blend of excitement, comfort, and top-tier hospitality,” added Sinclair.

Images supplied. Renders are indicative only and subject to change

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