The Store at Kekerengu sold

COASTAL STOP: The Store at Kekerengu is changing hands.
COASTAL STOP: The Store at Kekerengu is changing hands.

The Store at Kekerengu, a popular pitstop between Blenheim and Kaikoura, has been sold to an Auckland banker - the son of the current owners.

Former owners Richard and Sue Macfarlane have handed the reins to their son, Sank Macfarlane, and his partner Melissa Steward.

The pair have moved from Auckland to take over The Store.

LAND AND SEA: Hills and mountains meet the ocean on the Kekerengu coastline.
LAND AND SEA: Hills and mountains meet the ocean on the Kekerengu coastline.

They took over ownership on April 1 and had been busy learning the ropes over the past week, they said.

"The family have been a great help . . . we've both been in banking so hospitality is new for us, [but] Sank spent some of his teenage years here helping his parents," Steward said.

"He's coming home really."

Steward was not concerned about the move from Auckland, saying she was originally from a small coastal town in the United Kingdom.

"Everyone's been really welcoming, we're really excited to meet everyone," she said.

The Store was already "pretty iconic", so the couple would spend some time over the winter thinking about any changes they might like to make, Steward said.

Richard and Sue Macfarlane spent nearly two decades running the restaurant, which started out as a roadside diner and garage.

The Marlborough Express