The Lion Hotel

New pub group looks to expand in SA

July 17, 2020
By Alana House

Duxton Pub Group has revealed it is seeking to further expand its empire after purchasing its first asset, the Lion Hotel in North Adelaide.

The heritage-listed hotel was built as the Lion Brewery in 1871, and the sale includes an adjacent office block combine, creating a 5000sqm site.

The sale price of the property hasn’t been revealed, but the combined property was listed in October last year with an expected price tag of $17 million.

The hotel has been closed since COVID-19 shutdown in late March. Duxton Pub Group intends to re-open it in late September.

A Duxton Pubs Group spokesperson told In Daily more purchases were planned: “Our goal is to continue to invest in high quality freehold and leasehold hotels as well as other premium assets, with the aim of creating the most dynamic hospitality group in South Australia.”

The men behind Duxton Pub Group are Duxton Asset Management chairman Ed Peter, Brett Matthews (whose family own Matthews Hospitality) and Martin Palmer of Palmer Hospitality Group.

Collectively, they own and operate about 16 pubs in South Australia, including the Stirling Hotel, Uraidla Hotel, Crafers Hotel, 2KW Bar & Restaurant, and Paloma Bar and Pantry.

Peter told The Australian Financial Review the group had “line of sight” on several other pub opportunities.

“The economy is going to be just awful over the next three to four years,” he said. “But by buying carefully and buying the right assets, you can do OK out of that.”

Peter also noted that he felt pubs were a better investment than tech stocks.

“Equities are massively overvalued and most assets are totally mispriced,” he said.

The Lion Hotel

JLL Hotels & Hospitality Group’s Will Connolly and Roger Klem negotiated the sale of The Lion Hotel.

“The sale is a significantly positive step for the South Australian hospitality market as it continues its return to normality following COVID-19 restrictions,” Connolly said.

Accolade Wines sold its historic Stanley winery in Sunraysia to Duxton Vineyards Group last year.

Duxton produces around 60,000 tonnes of grapes a year equating to around 5% of Australia’s total wine grape harvest. It already owns several major vineyards in the Murray Darling region.

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