St Ali Coffee owner Salvatore Malatesta (pictured, top), with HydroChem director Nick Duncan, have purchased a small South Melbourne warehouse for $1.12 million.
The pair, which started selling hand sanitisers early on during the COVID crisis, hold other properties in the immediate area.
Their latest – a 109 square metre single level structure built to boundary – was marketed for its potential to make way for a three storey commercial project.
It will be occupied by HydroChem.
“South Melbourne is like Park Slope Brooklyn is to Manhattan – the writing is on the wall,” the restaurateur said of the suburb, which asks one of the highest average office rents outside of the CBD (story continues below).
Stonebridge selling agent Dylan Kilner added “land values in city fringe markets are continuing to surge as businesses and developers seek opportunities outside the Melbourne CBD.
James Keep of Cayzer Commercial was the co-agent.
Tichborne Place is five blocks from the St Ali café Mr Malatesta acquired from another restaurateur, Mark Dundon, in 2008.
Number 18 is opposite 194-210 Kings Way – an office once held by mining magnate Joseph Gutnick – which last sold three years ago to a China-based investor for $32.01m.