Hill of Content freehold sold after auction

Also today we are reporting a Chinese investor bought an East Melbourne motel.


It should be business as usual at the city’s oldest bookshop, the Hill of Content, which sold this week to an investor who will seek to exercise a new lease.

The triple storey 425 square metre building at 86 Bourke Street collected $5.3 million – a 2.37 per cent yield.

The triple storey Bourke Street building, developed in 1927.

At auction in early March, it passed in on a vendor bid.

JLL’s Nick Peden, Josh Rutman and MingXuan Li were the agents; the asset was offered with a month-to-month lease to the bookshop, which wanted to renew.

Vacant possession was also an option – and feared likely given the location, in the city’s revered east end, and timing, with owner-occupier demand particularly high.

The Hill of Content freehold sold after auction.

The vendors – regional based former owners of the Collins Booksellers brand, held it 73 years.

The buyer is China based.

Business as usual

Developed in 1927, the Bourke St building replaced another where AH Spencer established the Hill of Content five years earlier (story continues below).

The 86 Bourke Street site spreads 141 square metres.

The site spreads 141 sqm with Mornane Place access.

Some 200 people attended the auction including Guy Grossi, owner of Grossi Florentino, next door – the city’s oldest restaurant, founded by Rinaldo Massoni in 1928 as Café Florentino.

Chris Lucas is spending some $10 million renovating 23 Bourke Street.

Chris Lucas is also repurposing the ex-Society restaurant in the street as French bistro Batard following a $10m-plus renovation.

“The sale of 86 Bourke St demonstrates the depth of interest for Melbourne CBD real estate, particularly within the east-end,” the agents said.

“Multiple unconditional offers [were received] with the eventual purchaser being…sourced from the JLL Asian Markets team,” they added.

“The campaign demonstrated that investors, particularly local and intestate private families and offshore private investors are the most active purchasers in the Melbourne CBD right now,” according to the executives

“The sale is an excellent result for the Melbourne CBD market and demonstrates how the scarcity factor is driving strong demand and generating excellent sale outcomes”.

Also today, we are reporting a Chinese investor paid $11.6m for East Melbourne’s Birches Serviced Apartments complex, near a similar sized asset they own.

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Marc Pallisco

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