Crown & Sceptre Forced Into Liquidation
In another blow to the live music scene, the once proud Crown & Sceptre Hotel
in Adelaide has gone into liquidation. Over the last 11 years operator Andrew McDowell has turned the pokie-free hotel into a home for all genres of music, from funk through to the growing Adelaide hip-hop scene, but due to ‘financial problems’ he’s now being forced to close its doors.
Australian Hotels Association General Manager Ian Horne says this is just the latest in a growing trend of Adelaide hotels closing their doors in the last few months. “Banks are getting tighter in terms of what they’re prepared for operators to continue to borrow or owe…With five or six venues [closing] in the last three months it’s naïve to think there’s not going to be more over the next three to six months.”
The Holdfast Hotel, Dublin Hotel and Talbot Hotel have all been forced into liquidation, while the Producers Hotel on Grenfell St has been lying dormant for months. In addition, the Jade Monkey - an institution for many bands making their live debut in Adelaide - has had to relocate due to a hotel development
bulldozing their more than 100-year-old home.
Even though the AHA has pinpointed banks’ borrowing limits, wage costs and consumers’ reluctance to spend as major factors in this closing spree, it’s arguably the growth in expensive refurbishments of traditional establishments that has increased the financial burden on business owners. Coupled with changes in liquor licensing, the outlook is uncertain for the many venues that cater for dedicated crowds.
Whether a silver lining or not, the Crown & Sceptre’s liquidator believes the venue will be an attractive buy for someone willing to invest in a revamp. The Crown & Sceptre has seen the Hilltop Hoods, Pnau, Thievery Corporation and Crazy Penis amongst many others grace its stage, and was the home of the iconic ‘Kumfy Klub’ night for many years.