The plot was originally due to go up for auction on March 21 at The Berkeley in Knightsbridge before its sale prior to the event
BY TOM SMURTHWAITE
The former San Domenico restaurant on the A3 at Cobham has a new owner after the site was sold on Friday (March 18).
Previous owner London Investment Holdings Ltd confirmed a deal had been struck prior to its intended auction date on Monday.
The plot, situated on the northbound A3 near the Painshill roundabout, had an auction guide price of £4m. No details of the sale price or the new owner have been released at this stage.
Charlie Gregory, owner of London Investment, said: “We received multiple bids on the property from a wide range of different users. There was a vast amount of interest in the site from all over the world.”
The plot sits in approximately 6.5 acres – the size of more than four football pitches – of green belt land and includes a 815 sq/m main building and 288 sq/m coach house.
Formerly the Mayflower hotel, the site became the San Domenico restaurant in 1976.
The main building housed the restaurant with letting rooms and staff accommodation above, while the coach house provided additional rooms.
The coach house beside the main San Domenico building
In early 1990, the business closed down and the site has been empty ever since, although it has been regularly maintained.
Allsop, the auctioneers due to sell the plot, said it is suitable for a “variety of uses” – including a hotel, drive through café, restaurant and car showroom.
In January 2015, planning permission was granted by Elmbridge Borough Council for the coach house to be developed for use as a drive through café, along with revisions to vehicle access and parking.
A further application was submitted in August to construct a seven-metre totem sign, which in accompanying drawings had a Costa Coffee logo.
At the time, a spokesman for Costa said it was “evaluating opportunities” in the Cobham area, but had no firm plans in place.
In 2011, work was completed to ensure the acceleration and deceleration lanes to and from the A3 met current highways standards.