Pleasant Point Hotel’s new manager Tony Dahiya is excited the refurbished hotel has reopened after it was closed for almost a year.
The reopening of the refurbished Pleasant Point Hotel has been welcomed by regulars who have missed the community hub over the past 11 months.
The hotel suddenly ceased trading on December 17, 2019, and has since been taken over by Bob Mason and Ross Rathgen who own Timaru’s Bullock Restaurant. Mason also owns the Old Bank.
At a quiet reopening on Friday, without any fanfare or promotion, about 50-60 Pleasant Point Hotel regulars enjoyed catching up with one another over a drink for the first time at the hotel in almost a year.
Jared McCrean, visits the bar about twice a week and told Stuff he is ‘’really pleased’’ it is open again.
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“It’s good for the community. It’s somewhere to go. It’s friendly and welcoming,” he said.
He thought the new-look bar was “15 times better than before”.
Over the past two months the bar has been updated to include a modern aspect, and new beer taps, while the rustic bar surround of corrugated iron and fence posts remain.
Other additions include an 82-inch big screen television and new furniture in the outdoor area.
The hotel’s outdoor section now has a fenced children’s play area.
Manager Tony Dahiya said it had been two months of hard work and sleepless nights to get the hotel to the standard it was at now, with the 14 bedrooms upstairs all boasting new beds and wardrobes.
He has been managing the Old Bank in Timaru for Mason for the past six years, before that working in hospitality in Otematata and Auckland.
“It’s great to see the locals happy. Some people had not seen their friends for a whole year,” Dahiya said.
A patron of 15 years, who did not want his name published, said he had missed the hotel “immensely” over the past year.
“It [Pleasant Point] was a town without a meeting place. It’s good to be back and catch up with the locals. There’s a lot to catch up on,” the patron said.