It, too, has been snapped up by a Sydney-based operator.
The family-run Hampshire Property Group, focused on developing independent living communities for people aged over 50, gained control of the 30-hectare site.
About four-fifths of the caravan park is undeveloped and likely to be filled with portable cabins as the developer specialises in creating villages full of small, inexpensive, prefabricated bungalows purchased on a shared equity basis by its village residents. Hampshire was contacted for comment.
JLL Hotels’ Will Connolly, who managed both transactions, said buyers were hotly contesting regional hotels with strong trade.
“The level of interest and resultant buyer competition in the Wye Beach Hotel demonstrates yet again the furious demand for coastal hospitality assets,” Connolly said.
The clean sweep in which nearly $90 million in pubs and other coastal assets have changed hands began last year when Sydney-based rich lister Justin Hemmes swooped on the Lorne Hotel on the Great Ocean Road.
Hemmes paid $38 million for the Lorne pub, about two hours’ drive from Melbourne.
Hemmes’ rapidly expanding hospitality empire Merivale has long owned multiple venues in downtown Sydney and its suburbs but more recently spread to NSW regional areas.
It pivoted to Lorne soon after buying its first Melbourne hotel, Tomasetti House in Flinders Lane, which was sold by the Millet family for $37 million.
Earlier this year in March, a Melbourne publican paid $11.5 million to snare the Apollo Bay Hotel, giving the pub’s vendor a 10 per cent premium on the quoted price guide.
The bulk of Hampshire’s villages are in NSW, but the group already owns and operates two venues in Victoria, Pelican Shores Estate in Leopold on the Bellarine Peninsula and Lakes Entrance Village on the East Gippsland coast.
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