Local Waikanae identity selling up
Waikanae’s well-known and popular Cantonese-style restaurant, The Eastern Egret, has been placed on the market for sale as its long-time owner, Sadie Wong, opts for retirement.
The Eastern Egret has been a dining destination for Waikanae locals and travellers for nearly 30 years, with Wong at the helm all that time – first owning and operating the business itself and then buying the building premises 22 years ago.
The decision to sell the freehold land, building and business was not an easy one for Wong to make, given that it has been her life for three decades and the restaurant remains a local favourite.
“But the time has come for me to move on and I know that a new owner will be welcomed by the local community,” says Wong, who has been an avid supporter and sponsor of fundraising initiatives and community events on the Kapiti Coast.
“It’s a great little business and the regular customers have helped make the restaurant into the success that it is.
“They just keep coming back time and time again and tell their friends about it. I will miss the connection and contact with so many people.”
Stephen Lange of Bayleys Wellington says the land and buildings are owned by way of one company, while the business is operated by a trading company.
“The property and business arm are being sold as a going-concern and it is envisaged the new owner will simply walk in and take over where Sadie has left off,” says Lange, adding that a full set of accounts for the trading company is available to interested parties on request.
“The sale would include taking over all the fixtures and fittings of the restaurant and bar – from the fully-operational kitchen, the tables and chairs, to the crockery and chopsticks – along with the goodwill built up over the years.
“Sadie has become a household name in the area and her takeaway banquet dinner boxes have been a dinner-time ‘go-to’ for locals for many, many years. The sale leaves the door wide open for an energetic new owner to pick up the baton and make their mark, too.
The single level 240-square metre restaurant building sits on a commercial/retail-zoned 247-square metre site on Ngaio Road, close to the intersection of the main road through Waikanae and handy to the railway station and commuter bus stops.
The well-presented restaurant and bar has seating for 80, while the successful takeaway side of the business operates from a separate area to the front of the building.
The building occupies almost the entire site, and there is ample parking behind the property and also in the public parking adjacent to the Countdown supermarket next door.
Lange says the nearby section of the main road was formerly State Highway 1 and it lost that designation when the new Kapiti Expressway opened earlier this year,” explains Lange.
“Some felt this might spell the demise of the Waikanae shopping precinct, and even Sadie wondered what impact it might have on her restaurant.
“However, with the heavy traffic being removed from around the business, it has become easier for customers to access the property and there has been no noticeable drop in custom since the roading change.
“As part of this change, and to cater to the volume of commuters crossing from the railway station, the NZ Transport Agency has proposed installing traffic lights at the corner of the main road and Ngaio Road as well as opening up the car-parking opportunities in front of the business.”
The Kapiti Coast Council has a masterplan to revitalise the Waikanae town centre and its website says plans are progressing to improve pedestrian connections to and from the transport hub to the town centre
The building and business are being offered for sale by way of Private Treaty.