The Roxy is not for sale: Owner outlines plans for the Ivy of the West


DAVID Kingston remains as resolute in his plans to turn his iconic Roxy into a leading dining and entertainment hub as he was in 2022.  

He sees “the new Roxy” as one of the best 5 hotels in metropolitan Sydney and definitely the leading hotel in Parramatta.  

“It has a pivotal location, and will have multiple restaurants, bars and outdoor areas, and awesome heritage features,” Kingston told the Parramatta Times.

Again, he has rejected any suggestion that the Roxy is up for sale, and certainly not to the NSW Government that has announced it would make moves to “acquire” the Roxy for conversion to a 1600-seat theatre, along the lines of the Enmore Theatre.

Kingston claims no-one from Government has even spoken to him about the latest announcement.

Dubbing a few loud voices in the community and their push for government ownership of the Roxy as “based on some misconceptions”, Kingston says he has “well-developed plans” to turn the Roxy into “the Ivy of the West”, with five open-air restaurants with bars and entertainment and a cabaret-style theatre. 

“What I have planned is far better for the community than turning it into another Enmore, which is a one-dimensional theatre space,” Kingston said.

“I plan to turn the theatre part of the Roxy into a cabaret-style theatre, because that’s what people want – to eat while watching entertainment.

“We could have some great shows and music in the theatre, with the space adaptive for events and weddings.”

There also will be space for up to five restaurants, with large windows and doorways on the western side of the Roxy opening onto the planned Civic Link.  

The southern side will have a new ground floor bar/ café and also a rooftop bar /café- these will open up to the entrance to the new Metro West line.

While plans are well-advanced, Kingston says work on the Metro West rail link has held up detailed planning. 

But Kingston is a patient man and can afford to wait.

Kingston, who bought the 1930s art deco Roxy in 2002 through his K Capital company, owns the Roxy mortgage-free.

Up until 2014, Kingston ran a successful pub and nightclub in the Roxy and is proud of winning a NSW Government Heritage award in his restoration of the interior and exterior.

“The Roxy pub and nightclub finished years ago- it is being replaced by a totally different new and stylish Roxy which meets the dramatic changes in Parramatta and community expectations over recent years,” Kingston said. “Parramatta has changed, with UWS, high rise residential and offices bringing different people in.

“The day of the old-style pub, with its public bar, and limited dining options, are over,” he said.

“People like to have stylish dining with their drink and love to be outside.

“My plans will be like the Ivy in the Sydney CBD, sophisticated and multidimensional- something for everyone.”

In 2019, Kingston’s plan for a mixed-use tower at the rear of the theatre was rejected in the Land and Environment Court, so it was back to the drawing board.

“I have owned this property for 20 years and l am committed to my planned upgrades,” he said.

Kingston expects to lodge DA plans for his “new Roxy” in the next 4 months.  However physical works on the major Roxy upgrade will need to synchronise with the Government’s major construction works on the Civic Link and Metro West.


The Roxy 69 George St.

Built in 1930s as picture theatre.

Run by Hoyts before Village bought it 1970s.

Bought by K Capital 2002.

Developed into hotel 2004.

Closed July 2014.

Plans for redevelopment rejected 2018.

L&E Court ratifies decision June 2019.

Owner rejects Government plans to acquire Roxy 2023.

DA Plans lodged or “Ivy of West” 2023.

Images: Depict artist impressions of the new look Roxy.

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