GVM Group Property Director Tom Crosse says the feeling on the ground is that publicans will have to change their offering and foresees The Stroller becoming a gastropub
IT MAY seem like a bad time to put a public house up for public sale but The Stroller has attracted a wide level of interest.
GVM’s Tom Crosse is guiding at the seemingly very reasonable price of €250,000 for the popular watering hole in Ballyneety, complete with a seven day licence. However, the auctioneer concedes it is a project and it needs work.
The Stroller is a proud GAA pub due to its long association with the legendary Rea family who ran it for years. It is understood they were tenants and the owner has decided to sell up.
The sale by private treaty consists of the bar, lounge, function room, games room, ladies, gents and wheelchair accessible toilets, store, large garden, as well as accommodation of kitchen, sitting room, two bedrooms and bathroom.
“I see it as a good opportunity to buy it – get in there while everything is shut down and get it ready for reopening. Hopefully when the vaccine begins to take effect over the summer we can all go for a few pints and a bite to eat.
“There is a good population in Ballyneety and you are only a few minutes from the city. It is on the main road so you would have some passing trade,” said Mr Crosse.
Ballyneety Golf Club is another draw. When the golf course was constructed The Stroller became the 19th hole for many.
“The developer of the golf club had an association with The Stroller. They had the golf course and the hostelry down the road so members could go in and enjoy a pint, a bit of chat and craic,” said Mr Crosse, who foresees the new owner turning it into a gastropub.
“There is a fine yard out the back. There is room to expand if one wanted to. I probably see it going onwards as a gastropub - a bistro type operation with a mix of food and liquor. I am actively negotiating at the moment so we will see how things progress,” said Mr Crosse.
Looking at the wider picture, the president of IPAV (Institute of Professional Auctioneers & Valuers) said there is a bit of a stand-off in the restaurant, pub, hospitality industry due to Covid.
“The feeling on the ground is that publicans will have to change their offering. The smaller family run businesses that wouldn’t carry any debt or any borrowings can probably survive on a low turnover and weekend trade. But for those looking for something more out of it financially, those that are carrying bank debt, you have to go into food and blend the activities to ensure a good turnover,” said Mr Crosse.