Waugh family reshuffle with Woollahra Hotel ownership

Waugh family reshuffle with Woollahra Hotel ownership
Waugh family reshuffle with Woollahra Hotel ownership

Public House Management Group (PHMG), CEO and founder Mitchell Waugh has sold the Woollahra Hotel and Bistro Moncur.

It has been bought by other members of the Waugh hotelier family headed by his brother Ashton.

An Australian Financial Review report that the Ryan family had paid $50 million was not the case 

Mitchell Waugh and wife Harriet will be stepping away from the Woollahra venues next month to focus on the rest of their portfolio.

Mitchell Waugh has been at the helm of Bistro Moncur and the Woollahra Hotel since the Waugh family purchased the venues in 2015.

Waugh will retain his position at the head of PHMG, owning in entirety the Royal Hotel Paddington, the Marrickville Ritz and The Toxteth.

The reopening of the Toxteth Hotel in Glebe last August followed an extensive six-month refurbishment of the interiors, exterior and an overhaul of the food and beverage offering.

Affectionately known as ‘The Tocky,’ the venue was purchased by PHMG for $22 million-dollars in February 2017 from Geoff Dixon and John Singleton’s Riversdale Group.

“Saying goodbye to Bistro Moncur is bitter-sweet for us, this was our first venture in the restaurant business, and we have thoroughly enjoyed growing in this space," Mitchell said.

"We took some great learnings from restaurant ambassadors Guillaume Brahimi and Damien Pignolet and there is a vision to increase the food offering of the group in the near future."

The Woollahra Hotel, one of the eastern suburbs' iconic celebratory watering holes, has been regarded as one the jewels of the Sydney pub market, having been associated over past decades with the likes of Alan Bond and even Abe Saffron.

It was a depressed market back in 2011 when the White family sold the hotel with rival interest reportedly came from Leon Fink and John Singleton.

On its purchase from the White family, its co-owner Damien Pignolet's services were briefly retained as executive chef at Bistro Moncur.

The rumoured $30 million acquisition in 2015 of The Woollahra by Public House Management Group - fronted by brothers Mitchell & Ashton Waugh - followed other recent acquisitions.

PHMG is now focused on a complete renovation of The Royal Paddington, which Micthell says will involve a “complete overhaul.

Waugh sat down with the Wentworth Courier to reveal he had offloaded his share to two other investors who were part of the original purchase. 

“It feels like a new chapter for me.

"All family companies have problems when they go generational, they come to a point where different personalities, kids, might be the second or third generation, they have to go their own way so I’m very proud that we’ve been able to find a way to do it amicably and move on.

"But now I have my two daughters, who are very stubborn, very strong willed and I need to start thinking about them and establishing.”

Woollahra Hotel Sale


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