Get yourself doon the watter to Mac’s Bar in Rothesay

AFTER 72 years in family ownership, the long established, free of tie Rothesay public house – and local institution – Mac’s Bar is up for sale, offering a great opportunity in a thriving seaside town.

The pub currently trades very much as a traditional locals’ bar with a loyal and regular clientele, but with a welcoming atmosphere which also attracts tourists and day trippers, particularly in the holiday season when the Isle of Bute’s hotels, B&B’s and holiday homes of at full capacity.

It does not hurt that Mac’s is positioned directly across from the historic Rothesay Castle tourist attraction, and only a two-minute walk from the ferry terminal and main harbour of what is the island’s main town.

With an excellent trading position on Castlehill Street, Mac’s sits in an area with a good mix of shops, hotels, pubs, restaurants and cafes, which is a hive of activity throughout the day and evening.

Mac’s Bar (right) faces directly onto Rothesay Castle (left)

Caledonian MacBrayne operates a frequent ferry service to Bute from Wemyss Bay on the mainland, which offers direct rail links to Glasgow, and there is also a ferry from Rhubodach on the north of Bute to Colintraive, giving access to Argyll and the West Highlands.

The island is an area of outstanding beauty which attracts outdoor enthusiasts, with a wealth of activities on offer including sailing, hill climbing, walking, cycling, fresh water and sea fishing, as well as shooting and stalking. There is an 18-hole golf course at Rothesay as well as smaller courses at Port Bannatyne and Kingarth, and there are also three bowling clubs.

The property, for sale through Smith & Clough, comprises all of a traditional three-storey stone-built building, plus basement, under a pitched slate roof, with a two-storey projection to the rear under a pitched roof, alongside a small garden area.

Inside there’s a public bar and separate lounge/games area with an overall licensing capacity of 80 people. The main door leads into the public bar which has a very traditional feel to it, as the walls are adorned with years of Mac’s history, with photos, bric-a-brac and memorabilia. There are also five-flat screen televisions and a fruit machine.

The lounge/games area is accessed from the rear of the bar. Completely refurbished in October 2022, this has seating for approximately 50 customers, and benefits from a pool table, three dart boards, three flat screen televisions, a juke box and fruit machine. Again, the walls are adorned with photos, artwork and memorabilia.

The pub shows a variety of live sports on its eight screens, with Sky Sports, TNT Sports and the Racing Channel, and provides betting slips for the nearby bookmakers. There are regular events every week, with the pub hosting quiz nights, darts league, pool league and dominos league, making it a real hub of the local community.

There are male and female toilets as well as a large basement cellar which is home to a sizeable storage area, cold keg store, spirit store and office. The cellar is at pavement level to the rear and provides access to Montague Street for deliveries and bin collection etc.

The sale also includes four separate flats that are positioned above the pub on the first and second floors of the property. All of these are described as modern and well maintained, with double glazing and central heating. Together, they produce a rental income of approximately £20,000 per annum.

Selling agent Jonathan Clough said: “The property has only been put up for sale due to retirement and offers a tremendous opportunity for a new owner operator to take on this long established and well performing business which continues to go from strength to strength, and when you include the flat investments it is a considerable chunk of property and a great overall business opportunity.”

Accounting information for the year ending 31st March 2023 shows a net turnover of £217,278 producing a gross profit of £135,870 (62.5%) and an adjusted net profit of circa £50,000. Further trading information can be made available to interested parties only after formally viewing the business.

Smith & Clough are inviting freehold offers over £375,000.