Commercial property housing The Nuns' Pool restaurant at Shelly Beach expected to fetch $3M at auction

The commercial property, which houses the well-known restaurant The Nuns' Pool, is expected to fetch about $3 million when it is auctioned on April 15.

The restaurant, which opened in the new development opposite Shelly Beach, Cronulla 15 years ago, is not affected by the sale because the operators have a lease which runs for another three years, with an option of a further five years to 2029.

Ray White Commercial Greater South Sydney director Brad Lord said there was strong interest in the property because of the popularity of the restaurant.

"Generally speaking, commercial real estate is not sexy but this certainly is," he said.

"There is a nice nostalgic feeling to it."

The name of the restaurant derives from the The Sisters of Mercy (Parramatta) purchasing two properties on the Esplanade at Shelly Beach in 1924 for use as a residence and convent.

"In the years the nuns occupied the properties, they were seen by many locals walking down to the small rock formation below where they bathed, particularly during the warmer months," Mr Lord said.

"A concrete wall was built at the rear of the rock formation which became a sea pool for the nuns for many years; however, in 1948 the council deemed the pool to be a health hazard and as such the wall was removed.

"While the rock formation was never formally named the locals aptly referred to it as The Nun's Pool and thus the name continues.

"The properties purchased by The Sisters of Mercy were then removed and the now prominent Stella Maris Aged Care Facility built and opened in its place in 1987.

"The property is still owned by The Sisters of Mercy and the facility is operated by St Vincent's Health Australia and was refurbished in 2013, increasing its capacity for 72 beds catering for high, low and palliative care."

Mr Lord said the striking building in which The Nuns' Pool operated was constructed in 2005 by a Sutherland Shire developer, who sold the three residential units and leased the commercial space.

This was the first time the commercial space had been placed on the market.

"This development was the start of the gentrification of Cronulla, with many buildings following the lead," he said.

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