Warwick favourite hotel sold as demand for regional assets remains robust

14 December 2022

A favourite hotel with the locals has been sold in regional Queensland by leading agency Savills, reflecting the continued appetite for regional hotels in the post-COVID climate.

After an off-market approach by the buyer, the Horse and Jockey Hotel Motel was snapped up, which was the group’s first acquisition in the town, and was sold on behalf of Mr Corks Liquor Group, owner and operator of the property for 26 years.

Leon Alaban, National Director – Savills Hotels said, “This is the first time the asset has been sold since 1996 and illustrates the strength of the region and the consistent performance of the hotel.”

The Horse and Jockey is well recognised by local patrons and tourists visiting the region and is a multi-faceted business providing all the amenities of a great country hotel. It has income streams across public bar, bistro, beer garden, gaming room (22 EGMs), TAB and Keno facilities, accommodation and a drive through bottleshop.

The asset, positioned on a 3,503 sq m* site in the heart of Warwick, a block from National Highway 15 and 130km* south-west of Brisbane, has a rich history, burning down in the mid 60’s, before being rebuilt in 1967 to what is there today.

Mr Corks Liquor Group purchased the site in October 1996 from Harry Bath, a famed Australian rugby league player. Bath turned to coaching after his career wound up in 1959 and he spent the next 20 years inspiring success at both club and representative level. He took St George to premierships in 1977 and 1979 and steered Australia to a World Cup victory at home in 1968.

In 1997 Mr Corks Liquor Group conducted major renovations to the main hotel building, converting the former entertainment room into the current gaming room and extending the restaurant by removing a motel room. During this time, the 10 rooms attached to the main building were completely reinstated, the bar was remodelled, and the interior areas renewed and refurbished. In 2006, there were 22 rooms fully renovated and the gaming room received a further upgrade in 2019.

Tony Bargwanna, National Director – Savills Hotels said,These refurbishments have added significant value to the property and have placed the new owner in a good position to continue capitalising on the asset.”

“The demand for quality regional investments remains strong with The Horse and Jockey illustrating strong market growth for hotels in Queensland”, said Mr Alaban.

“We are pleased to facilitate the purchase of this prominent regional asset and we would like to take this opportunity to wish both parties every success moving forward.”