Two of Australia’s most prestigious hotels, The Ritz-Carlton in Melbourne and Perth, are being sold for about $500 million, amid a boom for the sector as travel demand returns to pre-pandemic levels.
More than $1.2 billion worth of hotels nationwide have changed hands in the past six months, with investors clamouring to get a foothold in the sector.
Billionaire couple Andrew and Nicole Forrest splashed out $575 million in February for the Waldorf Astoria, which is yet to be built in Sydney’s Circular Quay, while pub baron Arthur Laundy is amassing a $1 billion-plus hotel portfolio.
Hong Kong-listed developer Far East Consortium has listed the two Ritz-Carlton assets with a combined value of about $500 million. The world’s largest hotel operator, Marriott International, will continue to manage the 462 luxury hotel rooms under The Ritz-Carlton brand.
Far East recently sold its share of the Sheraton Grand Mirage Resort on the Gold Coast, which it owned with Star Entertainment, to the Laundy and Karedis families for $192 million.
CBRE Hotels’ Michael Simpson, Tom Gibson, Aaron Desange and Vasso Zographou, with McVay Real Estate’s Dan McVay and Sam McVay, have been appointed to the Ritz-Carlton sale.
‘We have strong confidence in the Melbourne hotel market and its rapid recovery.’Wayne Bunz, CBRE Hotels national director
Opened in March 2023, The Ritz-Carlton, Melbourne, is one of the tallest hotels in the Southern Hemisphere. The Ritz-Carlton, Perth, was in 2019 the brand’s first new Australian opening in 25 years.
Simpson said the two hotels had set the “benchmark for luxury hospitality” in Australia and were well positioned to capture the rising leisure and corporate markets in Melbourne and Perth.
The Perth hotel was ranked fourth in the 2022 Conde Nast Traveller Readers’ Choice Awards and won the best deluxe accommodation award in the Australian Hotels Association National Awards for Excellence.
In Melbourne, the hotel guests check in on the 80th floor with sweeping views and can dine in the signature restaurant Atria. Each room and suite features high-end accents of timber, leather and stone, paired with plush linens and premium amenities.
He said there was ongoing “pent-up demand for hotel investment opportunities in Australia, with new CBRE data highlighting that over $1.2 billion in Australian hotel assets changed hands in the first half of this year”.
The agents said the sales can be done separately or together and already there has been interest shown by a number of high-net worth individual investors and institutional funds.
The level of sales is in line with the same time last year and bucks the trend of declining sales in the office, industrial and retail sectors.
In Melbourne, the Worldwide Hotels Group subsidiary Legend Land Melbourne paid $170 million for the Novotel & ibis Melbourne Central Hotel, Melbourne’s largest hotel sale in six years.
CBRE Hotels’ national director Wayne Bunz said the Melbourne deal cemented the confidence international capital sources had in Australia’s hotel market, given its haven status and ability to provide a strong inflationary hedge.
“We have strong confidence in the Melbourne hotel market and its rapid recovery,” Bunz said.
Iris Capital, run by Sam Arnaout, is also taking advantage of the demand, with the listing of his newly developed QT Hotel and East End Retail precinct, part of Newcastle’s $700 million East End development in NSW.
The 104-room hotel is on the site of the 113-year-old heritage David Jones building and is being sold through CBRE.
On completion, the four stages of the East End development will include more than 500 homes accommodating more than 1400 residents.
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Source: Thanks smh.com