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Jumbo Floating restaurants in Aberdeen Harbour to suspend business from March 2, 2020 until further notice due to the ‘severe impact’ of Covid-19 outbreak. Photo: Sam Tsang.

Owner of iconic Jumbo floating restaurants to sell 509-bay car park for US$64.5 million amid record prices for vehicle bays

  • The Jumbo Court Carpark near Wong Chuk Hang subway station has the capacity for 509 cars
  • Melco International, the owner of Jumbo Kingdom, closed the restaurants in Aberdeen indefinitely in March last year as the pandemic slammed the industry
Melco International Development, the owner of the iconic Jumbo Kingdom floating restaurants, is seeking to sell an eight-storey car park in Hong Kong, as renewed speculative interest in vehicle parking bays amid record prices created a second chance to divest the asset.

The Jumbo Court Carpark, owned by Melco’s subsidiary Aberdeen Restaurant Enterprises and attached to a residential building near the Wong Chuk Hang subway station, has the capacity for 509 cars. Melco, chaired by Lawrence Ho Yau-lung of the Macau clan that dominates the world’s largest casino market, has set a guidance price of HK$500 million (US$64.5 million), according to the sole sales agent Savills on Monday.

The company is inviting bids through tender, and the property will be sold on an “as-is” basis, it added. The tender closes on July 15.

The asking price “is quite reasonable,” as it values each bay at less than HK$1 million on average, said Vincent Cheung, managing director of Vincorn Consulting and Appraisal.

“It should attract many bidders as the car park segment has seen a strong recovery recently,” Cheung said, adding that the rent for each parking bay could easily fetch HK$5,000 a month, giving a yield of 6 per cent.


Coronavirus casualty: Hong Kong's iconic Jumbo floating restaurants close ‘until further notice’

Coronavirus casualty: Hong Kong's iconic Jumbo floating restaurants close ‘until further notice’
Aberdeen Restaurant tried to sell the car park for more than HK$500 million in 2017 as a part of “a total revitalisation” plan at Jumbo Kingdom, Ho said at the time. But it failed to find a buyer.

Car-parking space, as an investment asset class, is again witnessing increasing transactions in Hong Kong as sentiment improves among property investors, who are taking advantage of the extra stamp duty on non-residential transactions that was eliminated in November. Sales of car parking bays jumped 18 per cent month on month in May, according to Ricacorp Properties.

Poon Ho-tak, executive director of Hong Kong’s textile company Texwinca Holdings, last week paid HK$35.7 million for three car-parking bays in his luxurious Mount Nicholson villa, setting a world record of US$1.53 million for each space. The purchase by Poon, 43, smashed the previous record set in 2019 when an office parking bay changed hands at one of the city’s tallest buildings.
A general view of Jumbo Court Carpark, Wong Chuk Hang, on southern Hong Kong Island. Photo: Google Map
The late Macau casino tycoon Stanley Ho Hung-sun opened the Jumbo Kingdom Floating Restaurant in 1976. His company later acquired the Tai Pak Floating Restaurant in 1987. Both restaurants, located in Aberdeen Harbour on the south side of Hong Kong Island, are collectively known as Jumbo Kingdom.

Melco closed the restaurants in March 2020 as the coronavirus outbreak slammed the food and drinks industry in Hong Kong.

In its heyday as a tourist landmark Jumbo served millions, including royalty and film stars from Queen Elizabeth to Gwyneth Paltrow and Tom Cruise. It has even featured in films like Roger Moore’s James Bond: The Man With the Golden Gun (1974), Steven Soderbergh’s Contagion (2011) and Jackie Chan’s The Protector (1985).

Textile executive holds record as owner of world’s priciest car park

The development of Southside, a project comprising 5,200 residential units and 510,000 sq ft of retail space above the Wong Chuk Hang subway station, will create demand for parking space when it opens in 2023, said Savills’ managing director and head of investment and sales Peter Yuen.

“The government’s initiative to invigorate the Island South area, which includes a revamp of Ocean Park and redevelopment of old industrial buildings in Wong Chuk Hang, will also lead to demand for additional parking,” he said.

This article appeared in the South China Morning Post print edition as: Jumbo restaurants’ owner sets car park price at HK$500m