By Chris Sutton
Sydney’s lock-out laws have forced another popular Kings Cross nightspot out of business and onto the market.
The Bourbon, formerly known as Bourbon and Beefsteak, is the latest venue to be up for sale with any buyer having the right to turn the site into apartments. Sport stars and celebrities frequented the location which was founded in the 1960’s and built a colourful history, including former Australian cricket captain Ricky Ponting receiving a black eye when in attendance in 1999.
The latest owners had purchased the venue four years ago, spending millions on renovations and only opening in March last year. Storm damage in 2009 destroyed the interior.
Many bars have been sold in recent months as Kings Cross and surrounding areas are slowly transforming into residential locations. Managers are citing the lock-out laws and the better opportunities outside of central Sydney that are not affected by law changes as reasons behind the movement.
The new laws include 1:30am lockouts and the ending of alcohol provision at 3am in a bid to curb alcohol-fuelled violence in popular Sydney nightspots.
The Mercure (Crest) Hotel on Darlinghurst Road will be converted into 180 apartments. Favourites such as The Backroom (relocating) and The Lido Hotel are in the process of being sold as questions of operational viability continue to push business owners to outer locations.
A string of iconic terraced clubs on Bayswater Road in Potts Point are also attracting attention from developers.