‘Australia on Collins’ set for another rename following lease deals

The St Collins Lane brand will be retired after eight years.

The new owner of the troubled multi-level arcade for years known as Australia on Collins, UBS Asset Management Real Estate and Private Markets, with Kaipara Property Group as development manager, has secured two major tenants.

Entertainment giant Kingpin will move into the basement and mezzanine – a tenancy vacated in 2019 by UK department store Debenhams – taking the 3500 square metres for an initial 10 years.

A licensed hospitality space is planned as is a VIP room off a private entrance.

Zones will also be created for hyper projection bowling, billiards, indoor lawn bowls and karaoke.

The 260 Collins Street facility will complement Kingpin’s only other Victorian tenancy, at Crown.

Across Australia and New Zealand it operates from 10 sites.

The North Sydney based group forms part of Singapore headquartered TEEG (The Entertainment and Education Group) with some 250 venues in seven countries.

TEEG is half owned by Sydney’s Quadrant Private Equity, controlled by Chris Hadley and Jonathan Pearce.

Ainsworth Property’s Zelman Ainsworth brokered the lease deal.

Offices to replace food court

Meanwhile Neville Waterman has leased c2000 sqm at 260 Collins St for serviced offices.

Waterman Workspaces will occupy part of the former food court.

It will be the first CBD address for the group which for more than a decade has focused in the south-east.

In 2022, it established in Bundoora (story continues below).

Next chapter for ex-Australia on Collins

UBS Asset Management Real Estate and Private Markets acquired its majority stake in the four storey, 9301 sqm Australia on Collins, with its takeover of Credit Suisse last March.

After also securing Vantage’s smaller interest, it appointed the local Kaipara, led by Toby Daniel and David Hopper.

The vendors paid $122m in 2020.

That seller, JP Morgan, outlaid $247m four years earlier; that owner also tried to reposition the area after Debenhams quit.

Between 2011-2016, the property was held by LaSalle Asset Management.

It spent $204m for it and an attached Novotel. The 380-room hotel component was sold for $237m, also eight years ago, to the Singapore listed Frasers Hospitality Trust.

Renovation, rebrand

UBS and Kaipara are expected to take 12-14 months to fit out the Kingpin and Waterman tenancies, working around existing occupiers, Birkenstock, Leica, MJ Bale, Patagonia, Rodd & Gun, T2, Tag Heuer, and Swatch – the latter two with prominent Collins St stores.

Buchan has been appointed designer.

A rebrand is also expected shortly – killing the St Collins Lane name introduced by LaSalle eight years ago.

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Marc Pallisco

A former property analyst and print journalist, Marc is the publisher of realestatesource.com.au.