Hotel sells in just five days

05 July, 2019 by Craig Hawtin-Butcher

Harold Park Hotel transaction thought to mark new sales record.

Lead image: (c) Google Images 2019.

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Australian Hotelier can reveal The Harold Park Hotel in Sydney’s Glebe has been sold after just five days in what is believed to be a new sales record.

The privately held Harold Park hotel was sold for around $6 million under a staged structure, to a local hotel group, a JLL spokesperson confirmed.

The confirmed sale via JLL Hotels & Hospitality Group appears to support a relatively buoyant Sydney hotels market, coming hot on the heels of Arthur Laundy’s Drummoyne purchase of the Oxford Hotel at $42m and Oscars Hotels’ acquisition of the Empire Hotel in nearby Annandale. The latter was also brokered by John Musca’s team at JLL.

The industry has seen nearly $500 million worth of hotel sales in 2019 to date, according to JLL research shared with Australian Hotelier.

“Yields are fluctuating wildly in correlation to the bespoke investment strategies of differing buying groups and the acquisition merits of each asset,” says a spokesperson for JLL, noting the Harold Park Hotel was permanently closed and therefore delivering no return on sale at the time the deal was struck.

Situated minutes from the Sydney CBD via the Anzac Bridge and opposite what used to be Harold Park Raceway, the Harold Park Hotel should benefit from the imminent completion of the Mirvac-built Vance development across the road, which includes some 1,280 apartments.

Nominated by Time Out Sydney for a People’s Choice Award in 2015, the Harold Park Hotel is approximately 10 years old and the sale included public bar and bistro, beer garden, first-floor bar and function room, smoking gaming room with eight EGMs, two car bays, lift and back of house areas.

JLLs Senior Vice President Nick Butler managed the sale with National Director John Musca and said:

“When you consider that the breakup value of the licence, EGMs and the 1,300m2+ stratum property for alternate retail or commercial uses underpinned the value, and the compelling catchment story, it was no surprise that the opportunity was keenly contested.”

“We’ve exchanged seven hotel transactions in the past few weeks alone ranging from $4 million – $56 million,” says JLL National Director John Musca. “Satisfying the prioritised investment requirements of our valued private and corporate clients and with more transactions to announce, particularly off-market, it’s an important time to be talking to us about opportunities.”

The now suspended website of The Harold Park Hotel asserts the original hotel was built in 1888 and opened as the ‘Centennial Hotel’, before changing its name to the ‘Lillie Bridge Hotel’ in 1903.

The original three-story hotel was destroyed by fire in 1959. Extensive renovations were undertaken in the early 2000s and the current building reopened in 2007.

The Hotel was purchased in 2010 by Australia’s first fifth-generation publican, William Ryan.