The only legal brothel between Cairns and the Sunshine Coast may soon have a new owner.
The only legal brothel between Cairns and the Sunshine Coast may soon have a new owner.

Bang for a buck: Plans to open Mackay brothel again

THE red light for Mackay's only legal brothel licence may soon turn green as paperwork is prepared for interstate buyers to take over Club 7.

Business Brokers Queensland's Ron Frank said he was in the process of confirming a potential Victorian lessee to take over the Paget brothel.

In March Club 7, the only legal brothel between Cairns and the Sunshine Coast, was put on the market, the sale grabbing headlines when it was advertised for the low price of $1.

The $1 sale would purchase the internal fittings and furnishings of the business, with the cost of rent and the brothel licence worth an tens of thousands of dollars.

After eight months on the market, Mr Frank said the business had had many interstate suitors, but limited local interest.

 

Mr Frank said the mining downturn had hit the world's oldest profession, forcing Club 7 to close in July 2015.

With business confidence returning, he said licence holders were happy to test the Mackay market.

"Since mines are opening there will be more activity," he said.

"(Miners and FIFOs) they make pretty good money and a lot of them are single."

"It's a safe place for people to have safe sex".

Mr Frank said the potential owners were looking to commit, with the paperwork drawn up for a long-term lease.

While the lease agreement was expected to be signed by mid-November, he said the final transfer would not be completed until April 2020.

The Dungeon Room at Club 7 in Paget.
The Dungeon Room at Club 7 in Paget.

Before Club 7 can reopen, the owners must gain approval from the Prostitution Licensing Authority.

To be approved they must meet strict criteria, including not holding a liquor licence, not having a criminal record and having no history of bankruptcy.

After nearly three decades selling businesses, Mr Frank joked that he had earned the title of the "brothel king".

He said he had sold 23 legal brothels in Queensland - a surprising feat since the PLA reported there were only 37 active licences across the state in the 2018-19 financial year.

But Mr Frank acknowledged that not everyone was a fan of the industry.

There was huge controversy when the Mackay brothel, then named The Loaded Gun, first opened in 2002.

That year, the Daily Mercury reported the brothel owner attempted to gain a Supreme Court order banning then Dawson MP De-Anne Kelly from going near their business after she reportedly threatened to photograph brothel patrons.

 

The Daily Mercury front page on April 12 2002, after then Dawson MP De-Anne Kelly said she was prepared to arm herself with a camera and photograph clients of a licensed brothel when it opened.
The Daily Mercury front page on April 12 2002, after then Dawson MP De-Anne Kelly said she was prepared to arm herself with a camera and photograph clients of a licensed brothel when it opened.

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