Council to sell Daylesford’s The Rex

Hepburn Shire Council is selling the historic cinema after six years.

The controversial campaign to sell Daylesford’s historic The Rex cinema has kicked off.

The holding comprising 47-51 Vincent Street and 8 Duke is rumoured could reap more than $3 million.

Inside The Rex at Daylesford.

Vendor, the Hepburn Shire Council, outlaid $6m in 2016.

It later invested another $3m to start repurposing the property as a mixed-use space with a library, auditorium, community hub, co-working area and refurbished cinema.

To be known as Hepburn Hub at The Rex, the development would also have included offices allowing the council to consolidate from multiple locations.

However, with another speculated $6m required to complete it, new mayor Tim Drylie last year led a campaign to shelve that project.

The property sale was approved in July – a move not supported by the majority of locals who participated in a council survey.

Fitzroys’ Lewis Waddell and David Bourke have the listing.

The amalgamated block spreads 2558 square metres, zoned Commercial 1 (story continues below).

Council last year shelved plans to redevelop the property as Hepburn Hub at the Rex.

Revitalise, restore, reimagine: agents

The agents are marketing the heritage protected, 1928 The Rex, on Vincent St, and a dwelling at 8 Duke, as an opportunity to revitalise, restore and reimagine a town landmark.

The amalgamated Daylesford site spreads 2558 square metres.
Paul Bangay this week listed the Stonefields estate, near Daylesford.

Penned by Borhinger, Taylor and Johnson, it includes a 2000 sqm ground floor. The upper storey contains another 300 sqm.

“Daylesford is a famous tourist hotspot located in Victoria’s Spa Country and recognised for an array of iconic hotels, galleries, spas and eateries including the Daylesford Brewery, Lakehouse Restaurant, Convent Gallery, Hotel Frangos, Daylesford Boathouse, Bromley and Co and more,” Mr Waddell said.

“During the COVID-impacted year ending March 2021, the region had 1.9 million domestic visitors, who spent an estimated $300m, according to Hepburn Shire Council, while in the 12 months to March, the Daylesford Macedon Tourism (DMT) area saw domestic overnight visitors grow 41 per cent year-on-year compared to 26pc growth for the rest of regional Victoria,” he added.

The area has also benefited from a pandemic movement which saw flexible working arrangements, and more Melburnians consider spending more time regionally, according to the executive.

“We expect this is now a long-term trend and destinations such as Daylesford will be the beneficiaries, he said. “The average spend per night in the DMT area of $198 per person per night is also higher against the regional Victoria average ($165)”.

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Marc Pallisco

A former property analyst and print journalist, Marc is the publisher of