Meanwhile, in Sydney’s ritzy Vaucluse, James and Erica Packer are redeveloping a Guildford Bell designed home on a prominent elevated site overlooking Sydney Harbour.
The couple paid $18 million for the 1970s mansion in mid 2009, after the vendor reportedly objected to the home being added to a heritage register, estimating it could rip $4 million from its market value.
Over the subsequent 18 months, the Packer’s quietly spent $12 million buying two adjoining Vaucluse properties that have since been demolished. A recently obtained planning approval will see the hillside land which once accommodated these homes, replaced with a security vehicle entrance, gym, pool, cinema and staff quarters, linked to the larger house. The renovation costs alone are speculated at $13 million.