A Bay of Plenty hotel has been held up at gunpoint just before closing time with an armed man threatening drinkers and making off with the night's takings.

Eastern Bay of Plenty police say those in the bar of the Edgecumbe Plains Hotel have been left shaken after an armed robber burst in just before midnight and threatened two staff and two drinkers with a sawn-off shotgun.

Police investigating the robbery said the man, his identity disguised by a hoodie and sunglasses, ran off with a quantity of cash before fleeing in a light-coloured 4WD vehicle.

He was described by witnesses as a male Maori of medium height and athletic build.


Police said the victims were not physically harmed but the incident has left them shaken.

The same vehicle had been spotted around the Edgecumbe central business district half an hour before the robbery took place.

Edgecumbe police say they are keen to speak to anyone who may have seen the vehicle.

They also want to speak to anyone in the College Rd and Main St area between 11pm and midnight.

They say at this stage there are no links with a security guard robbery in Kopeopeo on January 27.