Land and buildings encompassing one of New Plymouth's best-known hotels on a corner site with a hospitality history stretching back more than 150-years, has been placed on the market.

The distinctive character State Hotel, sitting at the intersection of Devon Street East with Gover St, is for sale with several separate eating and drinking establishments, including an upmarket meeting room/function venue; and an unrelated retail tenancy.

"It's one of the biggest, vertically-integrated, hospitality locations in New Plymouth's CBD," says Iain Taylor of Bayleys Taranaki who, with Alan Johnston and Paul Dixon, is marketing the land and buildings at 162 Devon Street East for sale by tenders closing at 4pm on Thursday June 27.

Featured in Bayleys' latest Total Property portfolio magazine, the 1538sq m, two-storey building occupies a highly visible site of 1164sq m of freehold land zoned Business A in New Plymouth Council's plan.


The various business entities within the L-shaped inner-city block generate a combined annual net rental of $333,239 plus GST, and include:

• the State Hotel on a lease running through to 2027 with two further five-year rights of renewal generating net rent of $130,662 per annum;
• three separate dining and drinking establishments within the premises, run by a hospitality group including national brand Joes Garage, and on a combined lease running through to 2027 with two further five-year rights of renewal generating net annual rent of $188,552; and
• Ella nail and beauty salon on a lease running through to 2021 generating net annual rent of $14,025.

"It's a property rich in the city's history," Johnson says. "Its multiple facades and architectural features over the past 150 or so years are a reflection of how New Plymouth has grown.

"Hospitality entities have been operating from the corner of Devon Street East and Gover Street since the 1860s when an establishment named The Red House opened serving liquor."

Over the ensuing centuries, the property – in a range of guises, rebuilds and refurbishments – has been owned and operated by some of New Plymouth's most colourful publicans.

The list includes:

• Tinker Smith who erected an oil exploration derrick near the Ngamotu breakwater and actually did discover 'black gold in the 1860s',
• Joseph Flower Carter who was famous for publishing in the local newspaper, the names of pub customers who had run up unpaid bar tabs; and
• Adam Lile who was a member of the pioneering All Gold New Zealand rugby league team which toured Great Britain in 1906/07 and who changed the tavern's name to the State Establishment.

"The State Hotel offers a high standard of accommodation in the fast growing boutique hotel sector and the premises sustains a range of dining and drinking locations," Taylor says.


"The trio of eating establishments and the beauty salon operate from street-level premises, with the State Hotel's rooms on the first storey.

"The first-floor rooms and ensuites within the State Hotel have undergone an extensive renovation that was completed in 2017, to deliver what is now a four-star level accommodation venue where nightly room rates range from $159 - $270."

Three adjoining food and beverage business operate under the hospitality operator umbrella from the Devon St East address. They include:

1. all-day cafe, pizza and short-order dining establishment Joe's Garage;
2. the more upmarket Gover St conference and events destination; and
3. the Asian-fusion casual-dining venue Little Glutton.

Johnston says the various tenancies within 162 Devon St work in a self-sustaining manner with a high percentage of guests taking advantage of the adjacent food and beverage destinations for breakfast at Joe's Garage cafe, or dinner at the Little Glutton, while corporate and events related guests patronise the facilities at Gover St.