Byron Bay’s iconic Great Northern Hotel has been bought by two cashed-up Melbourne investors, with sources suggesting they’re paying around $80 million for the pub and a neighbouring accommodation venue.
The sale has been formally reported by commercial real estate agents, JLL, and is part of a recent spate of major commercial purchases as interest in the town from outside investors reaches fever pitch.
It is the end of an era for The Northern, which has been in the hands of the Mooney family – who own a host of local venues including The Rails and the Bangalow Hotel – for more than 30 years.
They declined to comment on the sale when contacted by The Echo.
JLL, who were also the agents involved in the recent purchase of the Mercato Shopping Centre, said that the sale involved the purchase of the pub and the neighbouring 51-room Lanteen Lane Hotel.
The buyers are Scott Didier, the founder and CEO of Johns Lyng Group, and Scott Emery, founder of online lender MoneyMe.
It is understood that the Didier family solely acquired the Lanteen Lane Hotel. Scotts daughter Casey, who lives in Byron with her family, are set to run the accommodation venue’s day-to-day operations.
Beach Suites owners
The pair have reportedly owned the Beach Suites – a luxury holiday apartment complex on Bay Street – for the past 30 years.
JLL has been quoted as saying that The Northern was the subject of 12 separate bids from investors and hoteliers following an ‘invitation-only tender process’.
‘While this sale represents the biggest pub transaction of 2021, we believe that the Byron Bay story has a long way to run with the new owners set to take a measured view on improving the exiting offering for the benefit of local residents and the circa four million visitors set to enjoy the pristine location each year,’ JLL Hotels Senior Vice President, Ben McDonald said.