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Soul seeking new owners

Iconic Viaduct Harbour restaurant, Soul Bar and Bistro, which is co-owned by Judith Tabron and Eric Watson’s Cullen Investments, is up for sale via a tender process.

The popular eatery opened in 2001 and has hosted a range of elegant events, including Trelise Cooper and Kathryn Wilson fashion shows. Tabron, the restaurant’s co-founder and managing director, said the sale came at “the perfect time to explore a next chapter”.

She described Soul, which has an annual turnover of more than $10 million, as “a stable yet creative brand that can withstand the trials of time and fleeting trends”.

The restaurant is one of New Zealand’s most decorated food and beverage venues. It has won Best restaurant category in 2009, 2010 and 2012. In 2010 Soul won the supreme winner award at the Hospitality New Zealand awards for Excellence and has regularly featured in Metro magazine’s Top 50 restaurants over the past five years.

Restaurant Association CEO Marisa Bidois said the restaurant was a true staple in the hospitality industry and that Judith Tabrom was a well respected business owner.

“She has built up an amazing business that has stood the test of time as well, which I think is a major challenge in our industry, and has been committed to training in her establishment.”

Soul, which opened in 2001 has a seating capacity for 250 covers and hsa a lease that runs until 2026 with two further six year rights of renewal.