Matt Moran and Peter Sullivan  in their new restaurant Chiswick in Woollahra. Thursday 1st March 2012. Photograph by James Brickwood. SMH GOOD LIVING 120301
Matt Moran and Peter Sullivan. Photo: James Brickwood

One of the last assets in Robert Marchetti's rapidly evaporating Australian hospitality empire may be passed to Aria's Matt Moran and Peter Sullivan. They are involved in a successful play to snap up North Bondi Italian Food. This month Short Black revealed pub group Solotel, already a partner with Moran and Sullivan in several restaurant and bar ventures, had entered the race for North Bondi Italian Food. It'd be another joint venture, and word is a deal has been signed to purchase the restaurant.

"I can't comment on that, we're bound by a confidentiality agreement," a senior Solotel spokesman told the Herald. We'll take it as a yes. Word is there are a few conditions to be met in the contract, with the deal including a long lease. Marchetti has been under pressure to offload the restaurant and talk of $1.5 million price tag for NBIF is welcome given financial pressure on his embattled interests. His Melbourne restaurant Giuseppe, Arnaldo & Sons was placed in liquidation with more than 100 creditors owed $1.6 million, and Marchetti also owes money to the landlord of his former upmarket eatery, Neild Avenue, in Rushcutters Bay.