Chinese developer snares Brighton International for $20m

A Chinese developer is paying $20.05 million to secure a 4017 square metre super-site in the heart of ritzy Brighton, about 11 kilometres south-east of Melbourne.

Apartments, within a structure of five levels atop a basement car park, are now expected to fill the block at 81-89 Bay Street, near the suburb's popular retail strip, which for years has been occupied by The International reception centre.

The site was offered with vacant possession in a campaign targeting builders as well as owner-occupiers.

It is speculated an exclusive private school in the suburb, which missed the opportunity to buy the Marine Hotel site in June (that 4567 square metre plot sold for $15.8 million, also to a Chinese buyer), was in the mix of prospective suitors for The International property, but this could not be confirmed.

Savills marketed the "once in a generation" ex-reception centre hall. The campaign was managed by Clinton Baxter and Jesse Radisich who, other than confirming the site sold, declined to provide details.

Elsewhere in the suburb, in June, a China-based developer paid $11 million for a 1948 square metre site at 448 St Kilda Street, permit-ready for 31 apartments.

MFB selling Moonee Ponds sites

The Melbourne Fire Brigade is understood to be close to selling two Moonee Ponds sites for a speculated price of about $11 million.

The properties, which are near each other, but not neighbouring, are selling to an apartment developer, sources say.

The offering included a low-rise office building, on a 1608 square metre site known as 579-591 Mount Alexander Road, which has been vacant for about seven years.

Another site - an open air car park at 325 Ascot Vale Road - covers 1106 square metres.

Knight Frank's Danny Clark, Andrew Greenway and Ton Zhou listed the properties for the MFB, but declined to comment about any deal, when contacted.

Not far away, in the neighbouring suburb of Ascot Vale, local outfit Pace Development Group in July paid a reported $12 million for a 3826 square metre apartment development site at 327-357 Mount Alexander Road.

Brunswick factory fetches $15m

Local developer Goal Property Group is paying a speculated $15 million for a 4247 square metre development industrial property in Brunswick, about six kilometres north of town.

The site at 10 Ballarat Street - zoned Commercial 1 and able to accommodate a residential redevelopment - is expected to be replaced with a building of between six and eight storeys.

Between two train stations (Brunswick and Anstey), and a short walk to Sydney Road, with its extensive tram network, the property is currently configured with a functional 2500 square metre warehouse, office, hardstand area, and 32-bay car park.

It was offered for sale in July with a short-term lease returning annual rent of $165,600, targeted firmly to developers, given its location in a thriving residential hotspot.

Colliers International's Oliver Hay, Hamish Burgess, Lachlan Dornauf and David Sia brokered the deal for the property which overlooks the Upfield Bike Path.

Elsewhere in Brunswick, Sydney-based developer Mirvac is said to be in discussions to acquire a 7000 square metre industrial property in Albert Street, Brunswick, surrounded by Clifton Park, for a speculated price of more than $25 million.

Caldermeade farm trades

Prominent rural property Caldermeade Farm and Cafe, which an average of 12,000 car commuters pass each day mostly on their way to Phillip Island, has sold, with the new managers, a local family, moving in last month.

Settled in 1875, the 182.5 hectare cattle ranch on the South Gippsland Highway was listed for sale a year ago, with price hopes of between $6 million and $7 million.

Just over 70 kilometres (or an hour drive) from Melbourne however, the site was said to have generated interest from residential developers who might consider holding it as a long-term play. Colliers International's Shane McIntyre was the marketing agent.

It is between Caldermeade and to Koo Wee Rup where the state government was earlier this year said to be working on plans for a new airport.

Council buys Masonic Centre post auction

The Bayside City Council has made a post-auction offer to secure the historic and heritage protected Sandringham Masonic Hall.

At 23 Abbott Street - also the row where council occupies major offices - the sale price is speculated to be about $3 million, but this was not confirmed.

One of three masonic halls in the state designed in the Egyptian Revival Style - the property passed in at auction last month on a $2.3 million vendor bid - or $600,000 below reserve.

The campaign for the hall, managed by Hodges Andrew Boyce, was said to have attracted interest from a mix of buyers, including some who were considering renovating it as a prestige home.

Instead, mayor Cr Laurence Evans said the "valuable space", adjacent to the Sandringham Activity Centre and associated public transport, will be used for "a range of community services and activities".

The 1931 structure, which he considers "a wonderful example of an important period of Bayside's built history", was offloaded by Freemasons Victoria which is building a new Bayside Masonic Centre nearby at 237-239 Nepean Highway, Gardenvale.

Major medical centre fetching $18m: sources

An investment-grade health care facility in Sunshine West, occupied by ten tenants, and returning annual rent of about $1.4 million, is selling for a speculated price of more than $18 million.

The Harvester Centre, as it was marketed, includes four adjoining buildings across a 5000 square metre site at 122a Harvester Road, on the south-east corner of Devonshire Road, near the Sunshine train station, 11 kilometres from town.

Combined, the buildings provide a net lettable area of 4413 square metres. More than 85 per cent of the asset is leased to government funded tenants; Melbourne Health is the property's anchor occupant, recently signing a 10 year lease.

Given its location near transport and retail amenity, the site could offer redevelopment potential, if vacated in the longer term (the site has a weighted average lease expiry period of five years).

Based on the speculated sale price being paid, the asset is trading on a yield of 7.7 per cent or lower. Phil Smith and Chris O'Driscoll from CBRE's Gold Coast office, along with local broker, Scott Orchard, have been marketing the site which is now under offer.

Email: marcpallisco@gmail.com

This story Chinese developer snares Brighton International for $20m first appeared on The Sydney Morning Herald.