Ho­tel gets new lease on life

New op­er­a­tor faces busy pe­riod re­fur­bish­ing a Whit­sun­days icon

Whitsunday Times - - NEWS - Chris Herde

AIR­LIE Beach Ho­tel has a new op­er­a­tor and is un­der­go­ing a multi mil­lion-dol­lar re­fur­bish­ment.

A lo­cal pri­vate in­vestor through ABH Op­er­a­tions has se­cured the lease­hold of the water­front ho­tel right in the heart of the tourism hot spot.

CBRE Ho­tels’ Wayne Bunz and Hay­ley Man­vell man­aged the trans­ac­tion on be­half of the O’Neill fam­ily, whocj has owned the as­set for more than 30 years.

Mr Bunz said the fam­ily would con­tinue to own the free­hold with the new op­er­a­tor set to “take the ho­tel to a whole new level.”

“The fam­ily wanted to con­tinue to hold the real es­tate while not hav­ing to look af­ter the day-to-day op­er­a­tion of the ho­tel,” he said.

“The in­vestor has a strong be­lief in the re­vi­tal­i­sa­tion of Air­lie Beach and the Whit­sun­day re­gion where a lot of money has al­ready been spent.”

CBRE Ho­tels re­fused to com­ment on the specifics of the trans­ac­tion, but in­dus­try sources say the lease­hold would have sold for about $3 mil­lion.

The ho­tel is within the Air­lie Beach CBD and of­fers three ma­jor street frontages, in­clud­ing Air­lie Es­planade and Main St, pro­vid­ing strong foot traf­fic and high ex­po­sure.

It has mul­ti­ple in­come streams de­rived from 80 ac­com­mo­da­tion rooms and con­fer­enc­ing fa­cil­i­ties, a com­mer­cial car park, restau­rant, pub, re­tail liquor store and 35 gam­ing machines.

It is cur­rently un­der­go­ing a $7-mil­lion re­fur­bish­ment.

“The Air­lie Beach Ho­tel is si­t­u­ated on a sig­nif­i­cant 8829 sqm site, in what is ar­guably the CBD’s best lo­ca­tion, with never to be built out views across to the Whit­sun­day Is­lands,” Mr Bunz said.

“The new op­er­a­tors have a key op­por­tu­nity to re­po­si­tion the as­set and could im­me­di­ately el­e­vate re­turns through op­ti­mis­ing the venue’s op­er­a­tions and re­duc­ing over­heads.”

❝The fam­ily wanted to con­tinue to hold the real es­tate while not hav­ing to look af­ter the day-to-day op­er­a­tion.

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