One of the most recognised landmark properties and oldest buildings in Sutherland Shire with a long site history to match, has come onto the market.
The Como Hotel is up for grabs.

Perched high on a commanding 3000 square metres, the property is sprawled across four levels and has panoramic water and park views.

The iconic pub, which is popular for celebratory receptions, includes a standalone function room, and bistro including family friendly eatery spaces.

It was completed in about 1883, and was built in the style of a European recreational-holiday building typical of seaside resorts. It burnt down in late-1996 and was re-built in a style similar to the original, and forms a significant slice of heritage history in the area.

The Como Hotel is being sold exclusively through Sydney CBD-based HTL, a boutique brokerage business owned and operated by leading hotel specialists. Listing agents are Dan Dragicevich, Andrew Jolliffe and Sam Handy.

Mr Dragicevich says it’s quite a rare listing for Sydney.

“Pubs historically were one of the first buildings established in suburbs and in townships. The key difference with this one, is that after the fire, it was re-built brick by brick – you don’t often see that,” Mr Dragicevich said.

“You see a lot of heritage-looking pubs around, but it’s one of the better looking pub buildings in Sydney.”

He says the shire is known for its consolidated ownership, so assets rarely come up.

“The area is under-pubbed compared to the rest of Sydney and generally large format venues are always strong traders and in turn tightly held,” he said.
“The population is growing in the shire as anywhere, but per capita there’s a really low pub per person ratio.

“The Como Hotel has got four levels of trading footprint – that is rare. When they do come up, we generally have a deeper interest than most because they don’t turnover as much as we’d see in pubs in other parts of Sydney.”

Current owners, St George hotelier brothers, Bill and Mario Gravanis of Oscars Hotels, based at Brighton-Le-Sands, purchased the hotel in late-2016 for $5.6 million.

The family business also owns Novotel Brighton-Le-Sands and Rocksia Hotel at Arncliffe.
Mr Dragicevich says the siblings have become one of the biggest hospitality groups in Australia.

“They haven’t outgrown [The Como Hotel] – they started in pubs and they’re still in pubs, but they’re buying islands, big accommodation and leisure assets,” he said. “They’re fully integrated into hospitality now.
“Even though The Como Hotel is a big operation – we’re quoting about $20 million – it would be one of their smallest operations.”
A two-year rollercoaster of pandemic pub closures and restrictions hasn’t influenced the decision to give their assets a “portfolio hygiene” check.
“The boys don’t need to sell it. If we get the right price it will go quickly, but if not they will hold it,” Mr Dragicevich said.

“They’re happy to be there. It’s more about if they could take it and put it into a bigger asset.”

But rising inflation rates have forced some others to consider their options moving forward in the pub space.

“Some older owners moved on or retired after thinking about having to ramp up again and find staff, but equally there was increased appetite from buyers,” Mr Dragicevich said.

“They knew other sectors and businesses have a lag time before you get the cash flow in. With pubs, you open the doors and the money goes straight into the till.

“It’s still a pretty good market, even though interest rate rises have put a little bit of concern into some people.

“That first lockdown was very scary because pubs had never been forced to close before but trade bounced back – there was a bull rush. We’ve had our two best years ever in terms of transactions.”

As for those who bring in the bucks, pub-goers have well and truly returned to ‘their local’ in droves.
“These weren’t just people wanting to have a beer but it was that social fabric of society that people missed after being stuck in their homes,” Mr Dragicevich said.

“It’s the Australian way of life that’s built into the psyche. When it was taken from people it made them realise what they were missing.”

A solid money-maker, and with only 15 pokies that the agent says isn’t a “big part of the business”, The Como Hotel would be a good fit for another hotelier, Mr Dragicevich said.
“It’s too big for an owner-operator, but would suit a smaller group or syndicate. It does between $80,000-$90,000 a week in revenue,” he said.

“The price point underlies a successful business, it would suit a function group like a Doltone House, but it is more of a pub…it might suit two buyers.

“We will have a lot of interest and competitive bids.”
Expressions of interest close at midday on September 15 unless sold prior.
St George and Sutherland Shire Leader reporter covering education, health and general community news. Email:
St George and Sutherland Shire Leader reporter covering education, health and general community news. Email:
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