Property investment

‘Landmark’ Melbourne residential tower offers luxury living concept

Real estate mogul Larry Kestelman is pitching the luxury living development Capitol Grand towards Hong Kong buyers following an initial launch in Australia

PUBLISHED : Monday, 09 November, 2015, 9:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 09 November, 2015, 2:24pm

Larry Kestelman, the internet-entrepreneur turned developer of Melbourne’s tallest building, hopes to attract buyers from Asia for his luxury residential development Capitol Grand in South Yarra, one of Melbourne’s oldest and most affluent inner-city suburbs.

Capitol Grand will be the tallest building in Melbourne outside the central business district at 50-storeys. The mixed usage development is comprised of two towers linked together by a 26-storey retail precinct.

“Unlike Hong Kong, Melbourne is a low-rise city, not something for high-rise, apart from that in the central business district,”said Kestelman, founder and chief executive officer of LK Property Group.

Site preparation works, including the demolition of a pre-existing structure will be completed in January. Construction is expected to take about two years, with a completion target slated for 2018, he said.

He said 100 units had been purchased by Australians and plans were to now expand marketing efforts to potential buyers in Hong Kong and mainland Chinese cities.

Apartment prices start at around A$1 million with luxury penthouses in the 50-storey LK Tower expected to reach over A$20 million, among the most expensive for Melbourne.

A spokesperson of L K Property said the company so far sold 35 per cent of the 400 units from

both Australia and Hong Kong but refused to disclose the specific sales numbers.

The launch came as growth in home prices across Australia’s capital cities slowed in October as tightened rules on investment lending and rising mortgage rates let the steam out of the Sydney market, according to figures from property consultant CoreLogic RP Data.

Prices of residential dwellings across the major cities edged up 0.2 per cent in October from September, easing from 0.9 per cent rise in September on month.

Annual growth in home values dipped to 10.1 per cent, from 11.0 per cent in September. However, the headline numbers masked wide divisions between cities.

For October, Sydney prices nudged up by 0.3 per cent, while Melbourne rose 0.6 per cent after a big increase a month earlier. Prices fell in Brisbane and Perth during October, while Adelaide enjoyed an unusually strong month with a gain of 1.5 per cent.

Credit Suisse said in its report early this month that the Australian housing market is entering marginal oversupply, noting that demand from buyers need to keep pace with supply if prices are to remain steady. It said local demand is being held back by market cooling measures, as well as prices that are seen as unaffordable by many buyers, while overseas demand from mainland Chinese seems to have flattened out.

But Kestelman is confident, saying that the development will benefit from its iconic status as the tallest building and a landmark of the city.

“It is almost double of the height of everything else”, he said.