THE LATEST WAY TO SELL A PUB
By EMMA O'NEILL firstname.lastname@example.org MANY believe it has a mind and spirit of its own, and could be the site of a murder mystery. It's also one of the most glamorous buildings in Lismore, and now you can buy it on eBay for $3.1 million.
The Winsome Hotel is for sale. Its owner, Dallas Bayly, who bought the pub three years ago, thinks it's time to move on.
He will do so with pride after transforming the heritage listed, rundown, grand old lady into a building that he calls a 'place for soul'.
"I just saw this grand building and wanted to bring it back to the 20th Century," he said.
"I thought to myself 'this will be daunting, but it could be fabulous'."
Dallas bought the pub for $800,000 in 2005 and spent around $2 million to make it look 'fabulous'.
The property developer said it wasn't only the restoration of the pub's rosewood timber doors and cast iron veranda that gave the 108-year-old pub such atmosphere.
"Such a diverse community came to the pub. We had farmers, hippies and businessmen all drinking together."
Mr Bayly said one of his fondest memories of the Edwardian pub was captured one evening soon after he purchased the building.
"One night after I put blue lights on the veranda, I looked outside and there was a single lady playing a saxophone and about six people milling about and looking over the river. It looked like New Orleans and you could almost see notes falling into the river."
Mr Bayly said he learnt a lot more about the building's history during its restoration.
"People were always coming into the bar and sharing their Winsome stories. One couple had their honeymoon at the pub during World War II. We also had a British intelligence agent telling us there was a%body buried at the stables." Selling agent Paul dos Remedios recently listed the property on eBay, a site he is also using to sell an adidas jacket.
"eBay provides a 24/7 market place. It's the first time I've listed a pub on the site and I have had a positive reaction."
Whatever the hotel's fate, Mr Bayly believes the city will have a lot to do with it. "It's the people of Lismore that makes the pub what it is," he said.