An award-winning and internationally famous pub on Great Barrier Island in the Hauraki Gulf is for sale with its land, buildings and going concern business.

"This is a very profitable business, with accounts showing excellent returns," says John Fairbairn of ABC Business Sales who is marketing the property and business at 78 Blackwell Drive, Great Barrier Island, as a sole agency.

"The Currach Irish Pub is listed in the 2019 renowned Lonely Planet travel guide as one of the top 50 places to experience in New Zealand," Fairbairn says.

"The property encompasses the pub and the Innkeeper's Lodge located beside Stonewall Village and across the road from beautiful Pa Beach in Tryphena Harbour.


"The lodge is built around an old historic kauri villa with a rich settler history. It has five well-appointed ensuite rooms which include twins and double; and bigger rooms that can sleep up to four people; along with a small backpacker unit.

In addition to the main pub building with road frontage commercial buildings, there is a separate accommodation block, shed for power generation, storage shed, a sleepout and separate toilet block. Upstairs is the owners and staff accommodation.

Fairbairn says the complex grew from a villa built in 1905 so the construction is both historic and new. "The interior construction is a mixture of original and native floor and kauri sarking. The pub holds a current building warrant of fitness and a full hotel on-licence which includes the whole grounds and an A-grade food premises licence. Next door is the Post Office, the Stonewall Store and the Pa beach cafe."

The asking price for the Currach Irish pub and Innkeeper's Lodge is $1,347,000 made up of $872,000 for the freehold property and $475,000 for the business.

"The Irish Bar is the perfect place to have a Guinness and operates in harmony with the traditional Irish saying: 'Ceol, Caint agus Craic' – music, chat and good fun," Fairbairn says.

The location traces back to the arrival of the Blackwell family from Tipperary, Ireland, who built a house in the vicinity in 1880.

Accolades to the Currach Irish pub include the Best Rated Barrier Restaurant by Trip Advisor plus a Certificate of Excellence Hall of Fame; and winner of the Irish Pubs Global's 'Oscar' – the International's Irish Pub Award.

Another unusual award, the pub shares in, with being on Great Barrier Island, is the designation of Aotea Great Barrier Island as an International Dark Sky Sanctuary by the International Dark-Sky Association (IDA). Great Barrier is the first island in the world, and one of only three places worldwide to receive this status, with the other two sanctuaries being in New Mexico and Chile.

The Innkeeper's Lodge forms part of the Currach Irish pub property on Great Barrier Island. Photo / Supplied
The Innkeeper's Lodge forms part of the Currach Irish pub property on Great Barrier Island. Photo / Supplied

IDA's mission is to preserve and protect the night-time environment and "the heritage of dark skies" through environmentally responsible outdoor lighting.

Most of Great Barrier is protected under the Department of Conservation and the island runs completely off the grid on alternate energy – solar, wind, and generators.

"This sale represents a chance for someone to purchase an unequalled hotel with accommodation, restaurant and an idyllic 'get-away' life-style including owner/managers' accommodation. In addition to other innovations, the owners have perfected a power generating system that supplies the property with electricity."

The pub is open for nine months of the year and closes in winter for holidays.

"The owners have enjoyed this lifestyle for over 17 years and are now focussing their attention on their yachting business," says Fairbairn.

"They are prepared to enter into an ongoing management plan to ensure a smooth handover that will suite the incoming owners."

Fairbairn says the level of operational involvement in the business depends on the wishes of new owners ranging from front of house and restaurant services, to just property management.

"It depends on the lifestyle expectations of the new owners. The owners enjoy front of house and management, marketing, restaurant management and bar hosting. Other diversifications include a craft brewery and woodfired pizza oven with its own kitchen."

In addition to the two working owners, the enterprise employs two full time workers and three part-timers including chef and housekeeping.

Great Barrier Island, 90km from Auckland, is served by regular ferry services and is less than half an hour plane flight by plane from Auckland.