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NATURAL BRIDGE, VA-A 215-ft. high, 500-million-year-old limestone arch–the so-called Natural Bridge–is on the block. Included in the package are a restaurant, 154-room hotel and conference center, wax museum, toy museum and 1,600 acres. It’s all being marketed by Sperry Van Ness in Lynchburg and Summit Commercial Real Estate in Washington, DC on behalf of individual owners. The entire package has been estimated to be worth between $25 million to $33 million, Edward Koepenick of Sperry Van Ness tells GlobeSt.com.

Marketed by some as one of the seven natural wonders of the modern world the seven natural wonders of the world, it was difficult to difficult to develop comps for the Natural Bridge. Koepenick is basing his estimate on the roughly $1.1 million net operating income the various hospitality endeavors bring in every year. Natural Bridge gets most of its revenue from entry fees to the bridge, caverns and themed museums. The site receives a regular stream of visitors – some 200,000 – every year, drawn not only to the massive rock formation but also to its historical significance. Thomas Jefferson bought Natural Bridge and 157 surrounding acres from the British crown in 1774 for $2.40. Also, according to legend the initials “G.W.” found on the bridge were carved by a young George Washington, who surveyed the property in 1750.

One immediate way to add value to the project would be to upgrade and modernize the hotel, Koepenick says. The current owners, who are getting set to retire, do not wish to develop the property any further.

One hospitality firm has already made an offer, but according to Koepenick the owners refused it, since it was only for a portion of the entire parcel.

Possible buyers include hospitality and theme park companies, as well as developers interested in building out the 1,600 acres. Another scenario might be a split purchase between a home builder/developer, that would build a high end subdivision with golf course, and a hospitality firm interested in the 150 acres on which the bridge and related entertainment venues sit.

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