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Australia’s first dual-branded high-rise hotel listed for sale

MELBOURNE – Singaporean group Well Smart Investment Holdings is moving to sell the country’s first dual-branded high-rise hotel as the latest step in an asset recycling program in Australia and […]

MELBOURNE – Singaporean group Well Smart Investment Holdings is moving to sell the country’s first dual-branded high-rise hotel as the latest step in an asset recycling program in Australia and New Zealand.

CBRE HotelsWayne Bunz, Scott Callow and Michael Simpson have been exclusively appointed to sell the 35-storey Novotel and ibis Melbourne Central tower, with price expectations of circa $180 million.

It represents one of Melbourne’s largest hotels comprising 472 rooms – 259 in the lower-level ibis component and 213 in the Novotel, with guest amenities including two restaurants, one bar, conference and meeting facilities, recreation facilities and undercover car parking. The sale continues Well Smart’s strategy to recycle capital following its recent divestment of the ibis Budget Melbourne CBD and the Mantra Terrace Hotel in Brisbane.

A Well Smart spokesperson said the group was looking to utilise the sale proceeds for a Funnel Bay hotel and residential development at Airlie Beach and multiple planned projects at Queenstown in New Zealand.

The latest Melbourne offering is situated in heart of the CBD on Little Lonsdale Street and is surrounded by major retail, office and tourist attractions including Federation Square, Bourke Street Mall, Melbourne Cricket Ground and Marvel Stadium.

CBRE Hotels’ National Director Wayne Bunz noted, “The Melbourne hotel market has traditionally benefited from robust corporate visitation and tourist demand and boasts Australia’s best cultural and sports events calendar. With domestic and international borders now open, we expect Melbourne to have a rapid recovery.”

He added, “The hotel is being offered on a sale-and-lease-back basis, with the benefit of a triple net lease to the vendor for three years to assist purchasers with their financing, and to give a level of comfort as the market stabilises. This strategy was pivotal in the sale of the ibis Budget Melbourne CBD and is proving to be beneficial in purchaser’s discussions with major hotel lenders.”

The triple net lease is expected to underpin interest from a wide range of buyers, ranging from high-net worth individuals through to private equity groups.

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