The Emerald Hotel: South Melbourne racing institution sells to real estate identity
South Melbourne horse racing institution The Emerald Hotel will trot on, after being sold to a new custodian for the first time in almost 50 years.
A deal close to $6.025m was inked for the inner city watering hole, where sports stars and their fans have traditionally gathered after the city’s major sporting events.
Kay & Burton chairman Gerald Delany confirmed he purchased the pub at 409-415 Clarendon Street and intends to keep the drinks flowing.
“I’ve known the hotel for some considerable time … it’s quite the Melbourne icon, although I didn’t necessarily buy the property because it was one” Mr Delany said.
“On a very long-term basis the property has development potential, but it’s not my intention to develop.
“I’m looking forward to a long relationship with the leasees, who have been running the hotel for a long period of time.”
He said it was the first hospitality venue in his large property portfolio.
Jockey Michelle Payne paid a visit to the pub after her celebrated Melbourne Cup win in 2015, while horse Subzero was also brought for a visit seven years after his Cup win in 1999.
A historic AFL deal was also inked within the pub walls. Footy greats Allen Aylett, Ron Joseph and Albert Mantello met with Ron Barassi, who famously signed a napkin and agreed to coach North Melbourne from 1973.
The Lewis family will stay on as publicans for the watering hole, where they have been stationed for about 30 years.
JLL Hotels & Hospitality Group vice president Will Connolly said it was a “privilege” to represent the vendors, the Hart family, who owned the building for 48 years before handing over the keys to Mr Delany.
“The sale of the Emerald Hotel should be a preview to what will be a fast paced 2021 in the
Melbourne pub market,” he said.
“Given much of this year has been spent under harsh closure, there certainly has been a sense of pent-up demand from buyers.”
Mr Connolly also sold another South Melbourne pub, the Wayside Inn, for about $3.7m to a new publican in September.
Listing agent Nick MacFie said there were seven offers for The Emerald Hotel by the December 4 deadline.
The 667sq m block on the corner of Raglan Street is close to the CBD, Crown Casino and Albert Park Lake. It features a bistro, restaurant, sports bar with TAB facilities and a beer garden, while also offering a footpath dining option on Clarendon Street.