Asian investment firm iProsperity has put two major assets in suburban Melbourne, the Century City Walk Shopping Centre and the adjoining 200-room Novotel Melbourne hotel, on the market in a $150 million investment opportunity.
Led by Michael Gu and one of the busier players in the market, iProsperity invests on behalf of ultra-high-net-worth Asian investors. Last September the investment manager bought the five-star Pullman on the Park near the Melbourne Cricket Ground in one of the biggest hotel deals of the year, thought to have totalled around $200 million.
Now the platform is exiting its exposure in Glen Waverley, in Melbourne’s south-east, less than two years after buying the retail mall on Springvale Road for $45 million.
The mall purchase had followed soon after iProsperity’s acquisition of the hotel next door, a deal struck at the auspicious price of $73,666,666.66 from a syndicate of Sydney property players which included financier Phil Green.
Together, the hotel and the mall occupy a a 10,308-square-metre site. Century Walk has a net passing income of $2.9 million a year from tenants including Village Cinema, Strike Bowling, and the Pancake Parlour. The Accor-operated Novotel, has a current annual income of $5.1 million.
Mr Gu’s platform has appointed CBRE’s Mark Wizel, Lewis Tong, and Josh Rutman, and Savills’ Michael Simpson and Vasso Zographou to broker the assets.
Mr Wizel noted how the recent sale of the nearby Burwood One mall to a Kowloon investor for $181.5 million on a sharp 5.1 per cent yield had generated a broad field of prospective purchasers including a contingent of high-net-worth bidders backed by Asian capital.
“We expect no less interest in what are two very strong assets in what is arguably the best credentialled, inner-suburban growth location in Melbourne,” Mr Wizel said.
Mr Simpson also was optimistic about the hotel’s prospects, given the growth in tourism, the low Australian dollar and lack of competition for the Novotel.
High occupancy rates at the hotel were underpinned by its proximity to the Tally Ho and Salta business parks and the BMW head office, he said.
“There are a range of factors which continue to underpin a robust Australian hotels market that still has some way to go,” he said.
The two properties form part of the Glen Waverley Activity Centre anchored by the Glen Waverley train station and surrounded by retail and residential developments including Vicinity Centres’ The Glen, where three new residential towers are being built by Jeff Xu’s Golden Age.
iProsperity ranks among the top 10 biggest hotel owners in Australia through its backing of the $1 billion SB&G Hotel Group, which owns six IHG hotels including the Intercontinental Melbourne and Crowne Plazas in Sydney, Melbourne and Canberra.
In the Sydney CBD, the platform recently offloaded the 122-room hotel at 27 Park Street for $54 million after buying it for $46 million two years before.