Allianz quits Melbourne Central for ‘midtown’

The Federal Coffee Palace (left) then Enterprize House occupied 555 Collins Street.

Charter Hall has secured another tenant at its premium grade 555 Collins Street office, replacing Enterprize House.

More than 30,000 square metres of the 34 storey office has been filled.

Allianz has committed to five floors – levels 24 to 28 – comprising 6500 square metres or about 14 per cent of the (48,000 square metre) building.

The general insurer will relocate from a 7265 sqm ex-Telstra tenancy it took at GPT’s Melbourne Central in mid-2010.

Between Collins Street and Flinders Lane, the project will contain two offices flanked by retail.

Prior to that, Allianz was based at this end of town – 601 Bourke St, which like 555 Collins, is on the corner of King.

Formerly considered the city’s western core this pocket has, since the development of Docklands in the 1990s, been marketed by agents and developers as midtown.

Local building boom

Allianz’s next headquarters, which will be carbon neutral, is due for practical completion mid-year; the 10 year lease will kick in from December.

Charter Hall won permission to build it in April, 2020, just as the national lockdown hit.

Its permit also includes a 28 storey, 36,000 sqm office beside it – replacing 55 King St – and 12,000 sqm of retail.

With an end value of c$1.6 billion, making it one of the city’s largest office developments, only 555 Collins St has been offered for lease; Colliers’ Tony Landrigan and Alissa Woods with JLL’s James Palmer and Alexandra Harper are the agents.

The landlord is competing for tenant clients with US based Hines, which is proceeding with a fully electric 47 level office at 600 Collins St – replacing a scheme by a former owner, Landream, for a Zaha Hadid Architects, lattice covered hotel, rising 55 levels (story continues below).

The Zaha Hadid Architects hotel once planned for 600 Collins Street.

Lendlease is also constructing a landmark office in this vicinity, 699 Collins St, Docklands, after in 2021 selling it for $1.2b on a funds through basis to the National Pension Service of Korea.

More than 50,000 sqm is for lease in that 34 level building, part of Melbourne Quarter, following a (17,500 sqm) pre-commitment by Medibank, also struck two years ago.

Over 30,000 sqm filled

Since late 2020, 555 Collins St has attracted Amazon, for 15,000 sqm, in a deal which will see that business cross town from 8 Exhibition St – another GPT owned asset.

Aware Super and Connective are other occupiers to sign up, for over 9000 sqm combined.

Charter Hall sold a half stake in the entire project to Singapore sovereign wealth fund GIC last August.

The balance is held by the manager’s Prime Office Trust.

“Rising above [the] CBD, 555 Collins St is ideally located in Melbourne’s burgeoning midtown…on one of the city’s key intersections and surrounded by other premium grade office towers such as Rialto, 530 and 567 Collins streets,” Charter Hall Office chief executive officer, Carmel Hourigan, said.

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Marc Pallisco

A former property analyst and print journalist, Marc is the publisher of