The Postmaster's Residence restaurant during Labour Weekend. Photo by Gerard O'Brien.
The marketing of the Postmaster's Residence restaurant in
Arrowtown has attracted expressions of interest from the
United Kingdom and Australia, in addition to local inquiries.
Fraser Skinner, of Harcourts in Arrowtown, said the business
had attracted "very strong interest" since it was placed on
the market during Labour Weekend.
"It has been primarily from the local area, but also from the
United Kingdom and from Australia," Mr Fraser said.
Both the international inquiries had local connections, the
Australian inquirer being "someone who knows Arrowtown well
and is looking for a reason to move", he said.
The building will continue to be owned by Bush Creek
Investments, as the sale is of the business not the building.
The business, covering about 170sq m including the balcony
area, came with all the chattels and Mr Skinner could only
reveal it was "at a realistic price" and that the sale was
due to personal circumstances.
The Postmaster's Residence restaurant in Buckingham St has a
rich history, having been a feature of the street since the
1860s, though the first house burnt down in 1907 and was
replaced with the present villa.
Lakes District Museum director David Clarke provided
information about Postmaster's Residence.
The villa was used by Post Office staff until the 1980s,
housing Arrowtown's last post master until 1982, when it
became a bed and breakfast then an artist's residence.
Plans to demolish the building to build apartments in 1996
were contested by the Arrowtown community, which convinced
the Queenstown Lakes District Council to protect the building
by way of a Heritage Protection Order.
In 1997, this order was removed and the community responded
by raising funds to purchase the building.
Before the sale to developer Guy Evatt, various convenants
were agreed to - including the protection of the gardens - to
ensure Postmaster's Residence and the Post Office would
remain a historic town feature.
The building is a "nice transition" between the commercial
zone and the old miners' cottages, Mr Clarke said.
The Post Office precinct is now home to the Postmaster's
Residence restaurant, a Tapas Bar, offices and the Arrowtown
Mr Skinner attributed the strong interest to the "importance
of the location in Arrowtown" and the development of the
village's food, wine and shopping scene.