Written by Marc Pallisco
Monday, 01 June 2009 08:20
MELBOURNE will soon have a choc-filled centre, with Swiss chocolatier Lindt confirming it will open a “flagship” chocolate bar in the CBD.
Australia’s fifth Lindt Chocolat Cafe will open in July, within the walls of a former banking chamber, at 271 Collins Street, a space occupied until recently as the global headquarters for the National Australia Bank.
Lindt has leased 200 square metres of refurbished retail space – about twice the size of a standard city shop - and will open a specialist chocolate flavoured cafe and bakery, to rival nearby caffeine-concourses Degraves Street, Flinders Lane and Centre Place.
A Lindt spokeswoman said it chose 271 Collins Street because it was a high profile site, with strong pedestrian foot traffic.
Lindt is understood to be paying annual rent of about $2,000 per square metre, to occupy the space.
Prior to Lindt, the bank chamber space had been occupied by boutique fashion retailer Louis Vuitton, which took a short term lease at 271 Collins Street while its 139 Collins Street store was being remodelled.
Fitzroys director Rick Berry brokered the 271 Collins Street leases. The property is owned by Gabor Hubay, Roni Hubay and Ada Kornhauser, who paid NAB $50 million for the building in July 2001.
A spokeswoman said the chocolate retailer planned to open a second Lindt Chocolate Cafe at the Chadstone Shopping Centre’s new West Wing extension, which opens in August.
In Sydney, the company has four Lindt Chocolat Cafe’s including three in the CBD.