Bald Faced Stag tenant shortchanged landlord, live acts

25 January, 2018 by Vanessa Cavasinni

Ulladulla Property Services (Ulladula), has been removed as a tenant of the Bald Faced Stag – one of Sydney’s best live music pubs – by Marvan Hotels after failing to pay rent. It has since come to light that Ulladulla had also allegedly failed to pay some of the live acts booked by the venue.

Alex Goold, group operations manager for Marvan Hotels, told Australian Hotelier that the freehold owners took over the operations of the property on Saturday after Ulladulla had missed two rent payments and it had become clear that the amount owed could not be found. Since then, the extent of the debt has been uncovered, along with the fact that the lessee had not paid some of the live music acts that had played at the venue, along with several key suppliers.

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“It’s very disappointing to be honest, especially for the people who work there who probably would have left a long time ago, but their hearts are in live music. As we all know, live music in New South Wales is a difficult form of entertainment to actually succeed at, and these guys – our current licensee and duty managers and all the staff there – they’ve actually put their own financial situations aside to keep the doors open.”

Marvan Hotels is currently operating the venue, but is open to an experienced live music operator taking on the Bald Faced Stag.

“Right now our primary concern is making sure that the business is running efficiently, making sure that the staff are looked after, and making sure that our suppliers are being paid. So at this point in time, yes we will be running the venue,” stated Goold.

“We are open to expressions of interest for the venue. We know that live music venues do take a certain type of skill and knowledge of the industry. But for the time being we’ll run it as best we can with the instruction of the people who are still loyal and have the best interests of the venue at heart.”

Scott Alwyn Mackenzie, the general manager of Ulladulla Property Services, has previously pleaded guilty to 10 charges of fraud in Auckland in 2009.

Goold told Australian Hotelier that while Marvan Hotels’ solicitors are currently investigating further action, he could not comment as to whether or not that would ultimately be pursued, but that bands and other parties owed significant amounts of money may take action against Ulladulla. In the meantime, Goold is focused on the operation of the Bald Faced Stag.

“We’ve got the doors open and there’s beer in the lines, and we’ll make sure that the bands that are playing moving forward will be paid accordingly. There are currently discussions with Moshtix about any pre-sale tickets that have been sold and how we honour those tickets purchased. We don’t want ticketholders rocking up to the door and not being let in. We’re doing our best to do that.”

Australian Hotelier has tried to get in contact with Ulladulla Property Services, but all forms of public communication are currently disconnected.

Australian Hotelier has also learnt from an industry source that police are now investigating Mackenzie and Ulladulla Property Services.

Image credit: Sian Sandilands Photography.