Sources say prominent social club the EEAMA, known in Melbourne as the Greek Club, is paying about $5.3 million for the office building at 1C Bell Street, adjoining parkland overlooking Darebin Creek and at the Heidelberg West border. The group is expected to use the site for its social club.
The EEAMA has made headlines since 1997 for retaining ownership of its then 30-year-old Whiteman Street, Southbank, social club, despite numerous attempts by neighbour Crown Casino to buy the site.
What started as an initial offer of $500,000 for the 1200-square-metre function centre increased to $6.25 million by mid-2006, when the EEAMA finally sold. That price included costs associated with buying new clubrooms, and relocating fixtures and fittings. The Southbank site was the last freehold land in the immediate area yet to be acquired by Crown. The EEAMA stayed at Southbank until earlier this year, when the Whiteman Street building and several surrounding it were demolished to make way for a new Crown-branded hotel.
Sources now say the EEAMA has bought the 11,390 sqm Preston property, which includes a 6330 sqm office and warehouse building and parking for about 110 cars.
The building is still leased to the former Stamoulis family-owned company now known as Snowy Mountain, until September 2010. Greek radio station 3XY is also a tenant.
The site has room for a second building should the EEAMA want to build new headquarters and maintain an income stream from the existing building.