Salter Brothers expands luxury retreat portfolio

28 April 2023

Salter Brothers, an Australian Fund Manager with a focus on alternative investments in property, credit an private equity, have completed the acquisition of $230m of hotel assets over the past few months including their most recent acquisition, Milton Park Country House Hotel and Spa, located in Bowral, in the Southern Highlands of New South Wales. 

The 11 ha, Milton Park Country House was acquired by the Group for $20.2m with settlement completed in March 2023. Once owned by acclaimed hotelier Adrian Zecha (founder of Aman resorts), Milton Park was built and run as a cattle farm by department store pioneers the Hordern family in 1910 and later the Baillieu family. The hotel first opened its doors to guests in 1985. Today, Milton Park consists of a hotel with 44 rooms, an adjoining luxury wellness spa (including gym, indoor pool and tennis courts) and an events and conference pavilion in the sprawling gardens. The hotel is within a two-hour drive of both Sydney and Canberra CBD’s.

Paul Salter, Managing Director of Salter Brothers, said “Milton Park is a beautiful asset of significant heritage in a highly sought after destination. We have plans to substantially refurbish and reposition this estate as a leading boutique luxury lifestyle retreat in the region. The property will complement our portfolio of boutique luxury hotels and retreats.”

Salter Bros also recently settled on the acquisition of the portfolio of award-winning freehold Spicers retreat assets includes;

  • Spicers Clovelly Estate, Qld
  • Spicers Tamarind Retreat, Qld 
  • Spicers Peak Lodge, Qld
  • Spicers Guesthouse, in the Hunter Valley, NSW  acquired for $31.1m
  • Spicers Vineyards Estate in the Hunter Valley, NSW acquired for $20.25m
  • Spicers Sangoma Retreat in the Blue Mountains, NSW acquired for $17.9m

In total there is 127 rooms throughout the acquired portfolio. All retreats are within a two-hour drive of Sydney or Brisbane. The Private Collection by Spicers business is also included in the acquisition.

Paul Salter, said “This is an exciting acquisition and a great fit for our strategy to acquire unrepeatable assets in amazing locations, targeting the luxury retreat market, which continues to grow globally. We know Australians love to take short breaks at home and regional areas are leading the charge, with domestic occupancy rates well above pre-pandemic levels.”

“The Spicers Retreat brand is well-established and we are proud to continue Jude Turner’s vision for personalised ‘relaxed luxury’ experiences. Salter Brothers also shares Spicers passion for the environment and will continue their vision to become Australia’s most sustainable organisation.”

“In delivering these experiences across the entire Spicers portfolio we will manage for the Turner family the two urban retreat assets, Spicers Potts Point and Spicers Balfour Hotel, as well as Spicers Hidden Vale and Spicers Scenic Rim Trail in Queensland along with the recently renovated Spicers Tower Lodge, which is owned by the Hope family.”

Since forming its hotel platform in December 2015, Salter Brothers has rapidly established itself as a leading hotel owner in Australia with a portfolio of 4497 rooms across 19 hotels. Salter Brothers group assets under management are now valued at over $2.6 billion and include a number of larger hotels which were mostly acquired in 2015 from Australia Post Super,

  • InterContinental, The Rialto, Melbourne
  • Holiday Inn, Potts Point
  • Crowne Plaza – Coogee
  • Crowne Plaza – Canberra
  • Crowne Plaza – Melbourne
  • Voco – Gold Coast
  • Hyatt Regency – Brisbane

In July 2022, the Group added The Travelodge Hotel Sydney ($136m) and The Travelodge Hotel Newcastle ($21.2m)