ROCKHAMPTON'S iconic Great Western Hotel failed to attract any bids at auction yesterday, however, its owners are confident of a sale to meet their $5m asking price.
About 50 people attended the auction, held at the popular venue, but no bids were entered.
Despite the lack of offers hotel part-owner Ross Ford was confident a buyer would still come forward.
He said many potential buyers had formed investment groups and the property was more than likely going to sell under a unit trust agreement.
"Our main offers are coming in partnership rather than an outright sale," Mr Ford said.
With a strong history of rodeo involvement at the hotel, Mr Ford's main concern was for the future of a shed that adjoins the main complex and houses an indoor rodeo stadium.
He hoped the complex would be sold to a group keen to maintain this unique feature and keep alive the site's cowboy/cowgirl culture.
But Mr Ford conceded after the sale he would have no control over the future of the building.
"If it's lost, it's lost forever ... if we sell we've got no choice what happens after that," he said.
Despite his concern, Mr Ford said if the money was put on the table the current owners were ready to sell.
"If a person is willing to meet our reserve then we will sell."
A reserve price of $3m was set at yesterday's auction.
Auctioneer Pat O'Driscoll said a lack of bids did not mean buyers were disinterested.
He said often unique and high-value properties like the Great Western Hotel were settled with bids made after the auction proceedings.
"There are four to five groups there which we expect to talk to in the next week to 10 days," he said.