Gerald Delany spends $6m on South Melbourne’s historic Emerald Hotel

Emerald Hotel is configured with several dining rooms and a beer garden.

Kay & Burton chairman Gerald Delany has purchased the historic Emerald Hotel near the top of Albert Park Lake.

The $6.025 million deal was with the Hart family which held 409-415 Clarendon Street, South Melbourne, since 1972.

For more than three decades it has been rented to the Lewis family – also hospitality veterans.

On a 667 square metre Commercial 1 zoned block at the north east corner of Raglan St, the offering was targeted to developers.

With a beer garden, bistro, restaurant and sports bar – plus the potential for footpath dining – the renovated double storey venue was marketed to operators too.

Mr Delany, who has many business interests including within the hospitality sector, will hold Emerald Hill as an investment; it isn’t being marketed for lease.

JLL Hotels & Hospitality’s Will Connolly and Nick MacFie said seven offers came in when they closed an expressions of interest campaign 12 days ago (story continues below).

Next year will be big for hotel deals: agents

The agents recently traded the nearby Wayside Inn for $3.7m representing a family which had held it since 1993.

“The sale of the Emerald Hotel should be a preview to what will be a fast-paced 2021 in the Melbourne pub market,” according to the brokers.

“Given much of this year has been spent under harsh closure, there certainly has been a sense of ‘pent up demand’ from buyers, with capital wanting to be spent,” Mr Connolly added.

“We see this as an extremely positive outlook to a rush of market activity in Q1 2021”.

In Sydney, which exited the lockdown environment from June (compared to Melbourne, last month), a string of inner-city hotel transactions at solid prices have taken place this quarter – three alone in Darlinghurst.

Emerald Hotel’s beer garden.
The Lewis family has rented the venue for more than 30 years.
The hotel is walking distance to Albert Park Lake and three kilometres from the city.

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Marc Pallisco

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