By Clyde Mooney
One of Queensland’s best known hotels has been sold for $15 million in an exclusive off-market transaction.
Pub real estate agent, Jones Lang LaSalle, brokered the sale of the Court House Hotel in Port Douglas to the family-owned Hilrok Group, which also owns the nearby Central Hotel and the Ivanhoe in Manly, NSW.
The outgoing owners were a syndicate that included East Coast Hotels, which operates Helm Bar in Sydney's Darling Harbour and recently purchased the Titanium Bar in Surfers Paradise from Gold Coast Titans boss Michael Serle.
Port Douglas has experienced its best start to the season in four years, JLL national director of hotels, John Musca told TheShout.
"It's no surprise this unique asset was keenly contested," he said.
JLL's Queensland manger, Paul Fraser, agreed that the history of good trade and the popularity of the area were strong factors in the sale.
"Interest was strong because along with Noosa, Port Douglas is considered Australia's premier resort destination and the Court House Hotel is a national icon that has only changed hands twice in 30 years."
The hotel has a valuable 2am trading approval, and the sale included three detached bottle shops, 30 gaming authorities and the adjacent strata 2Fish restaurant property overlooking the Port Douglas waterfront.
The Court House is considered a highly profitable and growing business and one of the best known hotels in the country, and the former ownership syndicate was believed to be split over the decision to sell the asset.
The group also sold Gladstone's Tannum Sands Hotel last year through JLL for $27.5 million.