Toorak investors bank in excess of $25 million selling Melbourne CBD office held for five decades

EXCLUSIVE

A small six-storey office at the east-end of the Melbourne CBD is selling for a price speculated to be well in excess of $25 million.

The vendor of 45 Exhibition Street, Normadel Investments, a private company controlled by Toorak-based Henryk and Emily Kranz, paid $78,000 for the property in 1968.

Near the north-west corner of Flinders Lane, in the shadow of the landmark 101 Collins Street skyscraper, 45 Exhibition Street is next door to the peculiar 41X, a strata-office which the Australian Institute of Architects completed in 2014.

The investment is next door to the 41X strata-office building.

It is across the road from Collins Place and adjacent to 8 Exhibition Street – the local headquarters of global consultancy, EY.

The Parliament train station is a block away.

Marketed by Colliers International as “an intergenerational freehold” having “endless upside”, 45 Exhibition Street contains 1567 square metres of lettable area and two off-street car parks.

It occupies a 344 sqm block zoned Commercial 1, which agents Daniel Wolman, Oliver Hay, Matt Stagg and David Sia said could make way for a hotel, office or apartment tower.

A birds-eye view of the site (shaded).

The brokers declined to comment about the 45 Exhibition Street campaign after a sold sticker was peeled onto the marketing board over the weekend.

The property was listed in February with a price guide of just over $20 million. The final result is understood to have substantially exceeded that expectation, sources say.

In 2017, Salta Properties and Asia One received a planning permit to replace an 849 sqm site at nearby 63 Exhibition Street with a 59-storey tower containing 119 apartments and 185 hotel rooms.

The sale of 45 Exhibition Street comes less than a month after 86-year old Sydney developer Harry Triguboff paid Besgate $29 million for 140 King Street – a low-rise building on a 792 sqm site, permit-ready to make way for a 57-storey hotel.

This purchase was Mr Triguboff’s first in Melbourne after more than 50 years in the development game.

Sydney’s Harry Triguboff recently acquired this permit-ready site at 140 King Street, his first Melbourne property after 50 years in the development business.

In November, luxury retailer Rolex paid the Liberal Party of Australia’s Victorian division $37.1 million for the historic Centenary Hall at 104 Exhibition Street – on a 444 sqm plot with limited redevelopment prospects.

Both 140 King Street and 104 Exhibition Street were also marketed by Colliers International.

Earlier this month the agency co-listed 130 Little Collins Street for the Uniting Church Synod of Victoria and Tasmania.

On a 651 sqm parcel, the brown-brick eight storey office is expected to sell for more than $35 million. It is being offered with a permit to be replaced with a 27-storey hotel.

The Uniting Church acquired 130 Little Collins Street in 1968 – the same year Normadel Investments picked up 45 Exhibition Street.

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Marc Pallisco

A freelance property analyst and journalist, Marc is a co-founder of realestatesource.com.au.

Marc Pallisco
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