Tiny village, big prospects: tourist attraction for sale
A HIGH profile site in a premier tourist town and with a history of winning awards — there is a lot to like here in Richmond.
No.21a Bridge St’s Old Hobart Town Model Village has attracted young and older visitors for decades, but now due to retirement, the time is right for it to change hands.
Knight Frank commercial sales consultants John Blacklow and Matthew Wallace describe the property as “certainly one of Tasmania’s best tourist attractions”.
Mr Blacklow said this opportunity is highly attractive.
“It is an exceptional property and business,” he said.
“The model village is in top class condition, the figures are great, there is a four-bedroom residence on site and the position is in the middle of one of our top tourist towns.
“It is an extremely satisfying and easy to run business, plus there is surplus land for further development — what more could anyone want?”
Mr Blacklow said it was fair to describe the 4651sq m property as “unique”.
“Absolutely, the owner has done a huge job, over considerable time, to ensure the authenticity of the operation,” he said.
“The maintenance of the buildings and figurines is quite easy, and so too is making new structures once tuition is provided by the owner, which is part of the sale.”
The model village was individually handcrafted by Andrew and John Quick over a three-year period from 1987 until they opened for business in September 1990.
The next year they won a Tasmanian Tourism Award for The Best Development Project, which was followed in 1992 and 1993 with awards for Tasmania’s Most Significant Attraction.
The Quick family carefully researched and planned the model from historical images and
archives, with the buildings taking shape on paper first, carefully planned to ensure historical accuracy.
These blueprints are then used to build the basic building shapes, which are constructed of plaster and polymer renders.
Further detailing is added with both concrete and clay to give the finer details, with realistic wooden doors and perspex windows being hand built in John and Andrew’s workshop.
The result is an accurate miniature replica of Hobart in the 1820s.
The model also features over 500 handmade figurines scattered around the village depicting daily life in the 1820s.
Arranged in often humorous scenes, such as the odd cart crash, or in more sombre tones of the convict work parties, the figurines help to make the village feel alive.
Andrew Quick told the Mercury that the “lower down you can get to view the more it comes to life”.
“I have photos taken at road and tree height and it’s hard to tell whether it’s the real thing or not,” he said.
“And I still maintain that the kids get the best view.”
Mr Blacklow said well-established Richmond businesses are often highly prized.
“Every time I have a business to sell in Richmond, it moves quickly,” he said.
“Being so close to Hobart is a huge bonus. The New Richmond Maze is a welcome addition to the town and another tourist drawcard.”
The Old Hobart Town Model Village is listed with Knight Frank, it will be sold by expression of interest closing January 12, 2023 at 4pm.