Duxton acquires Swanport Hotel, The Australasian in Goolwa

The Australasian on Porter St in Goolwa.

The trio of hoteliers behind Duxton Pubs have completed a restructure of their hospitality ownership and management arms after adding two more regional venues to their expanding portfolio.

Duxton recently acquired the Swanport Hotel in Murray Bridge and historic Goolwa property The Australasian Circa 1858, which it picked up for $2.53 million.

It now owns more than 20 venues across Adelaide and in regional areas across the state, in addition to Stepney-based Little Bang Brewing, which it purchased last year.

Duxton has also acquired BSGM Hospitality Services – a related company that manages its portfolio of venues and is owned by two of Duxton’s founding shareholders Brett Matthews and Martin Palmer.

As part of the deal Mr Matthews and Mr Palmer will take additional equity in Duxton in exchange for BSGM ownership, with BSGM to be rebranded to Duxton Hospitality Services.

Duxton chairman Ed Peter said the deal would transition the company to become a “fully integrated hospitality owner and operator”.

Inside The Australasian in Goolwa.

“This will give us an incredibly dynamic and fully integrated hospitality offering, in keeping with our goal to become Australia’s pre-eminent hospitality group,” he said.

Mr Matthews said it was a logical step for the group given the “natural synergies” between the two companies.

“It’s an exciting time in the group’s development journey and this latest evolution will strongly position us for further expansion,” he said.

The two recent acquisitions boost Duxton’s regional portfolio of hotels which includes the Royal Oak in Penola, the Port Broughton Hotel on the Yorke Peninsula and the Bushman’s Arms in Naracoorte.

Mr Peter said the Swanport Hotel was a favourite among Murray Bridge locals, and would benefit from major investment and population growth in the region.

“Murray Bridge and surrounds are experiencing strong population growth and that’s only going to increase on the back of Thomas Foods expansion, the nearby Gifford Hill development and the 30-Year Plan for Greater Adelaide,” he said.

The Australasian previously ran as a high-end restaurant before its closure in 2019.

SA WEEKEND - Hotel Barons

Duxton Pubs founders Ed Peter, Martin Palmer and Brett Matthews at the Cremorne Hotel in Unley. Picture: Matt Turner.

Vendor Juliet Michell, who bought the property in 2003 in a derelict state, undertook a major renovation and for the past two years has used it as a private holiday home.

Duxton plans to reopen a commercial business in the property centred around its six rooms of refurbished accommodation.

“The potential for that property, particularly given its accommodation offering, is really endless,” Mr Peter said.

Duxton’s continued buying spree forms part of an ambition to become one of the country’s top three pub owners.