Salter settles on maiden SA asset

The Adelaide Sofitel opened in 2021.

Acquisitive Melbourne based fund manager Salter Brothers has settled on its $154 million purchase of Adelaide’s Sofitel – its first South Australian asset.

Salter purchased NEXT Brisbane and an adjoining mall in 2021.

The deal for the 251 key guesthouse covering the lower 24 storeys of a 32 level building, also with strata owned apartments, was mooted in March.

Palumbo Group was developer and vendor; completed 18 months ago, the investment was the CBD’s first 5-star hotel in 33 years.

The property will seed Salter Brothers’ Core Hospitality Real Estate Fund, backed by Singapore sovereign wealth fund GIC, which will chase newer, upscale hotels with minimal to no front-end capital expenditure requirements, servicing corporate, leisure, domestic and international segments.

CDC Property Consultancy, Ethos Urban, EY, MinterEllison, Nett Zero and Rider Levett Bucknall assisted the buyer.

CBRE’s Michael Simpson with Savills’ Nick Lower acted for Palumbo.

“The sale…represents Adelaide’s most significant single asset hotel transaction,” Mr Simpson said.

“The developers…poured their heart and soul into delivering what is arguably the best internationally branded luxury hotel in Adelaide,” he added.

“We have seen considerable investment activity for the first half of 2023 with the Sofitel Adelaide sale joining a raft of other major institutional transactions we have been involved in, including the Waldorf Astoria Sydney, Novotel & Ibis Melbourne Central and Sofitel Brisbane, which together exceed $1.2 billion” according to the executive (story continues below).

Lilianfels Resort, one of five assets Salta just bought from Escarpment Group.

Salter comes to Adelaide

At 108 Currie Street, the Sofitel also includes two bars, the Garden Bleu restaurant, a fitness centre, pool, meeting rooms and executive lounge – Club Millésime – all managed by Accor, which last July struck a deal to manage 11 ex-Travelodge hotels which Salter’s picked up in 2020.

“We are delighted to extend our partnership with Salter Brothers and the continued strengthening of Accor’s relationship with such a dynamic and successful group,” Accor chief executive officer, Sarah Derry, said.

“We share a vision and commitment to delivering exceptional experiences for our guests and I look forward to the ongoing success of our collaboration,” according to the executive.

Salter Brothers managing director, Paul Salter, added “the South Australian market…has proven to be a premium events, business and tourism destination [and] Adelaide accommodation has had an incredibly strong 2023, off the back of a series of amazing sporting events and festivals”.

Also this financial year, Salter has been acquiring regional New South Wales guesthouses including, in April, Bowral’s 200 hectare Milton Park Country House Hotel and Spa.

In 2019, meanwhile, the group entered the Brisbane hotel market, paying Challenger c$150m for the NEXT Brisbane, formerly known as the Lennons Hill Brisbane, and an adjoining shopping centre.

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Marc Pallisco

A former property analyst and print journalist, Marc is the publisher of