The Financial Review - 25.10.2021

Veteran Queensland developer David Devine has clocked up $150 million of sales in just 10 weeks at his latest high-rise project at Surfers Paradise, amid strong demand for larger apartments on the Gold Coast from downsizers and interstate investors.

The 38-level Royale tower, to be built on a 2251 square metre block on the corner of Markwell Avenue and Northcliffe Terrace, has 104 beachfront apartments and penthouses plus a raft of amenities including swimming pools and a wellness centre.

Aimed at wealthier buyers – the average apartment price is $3 million – nearly half of the apartments in the tower have been purchased off-the-plan.

Marketing agency Total Property Group said more than a quarter of buyers were Queenslanders, the majority Gold Coast locals, who were downsizing from larger homes.

“There are limited opportunities to buy premium apartments with an absolute beachfront location on the Gold Coast,” managing director Adrian Parsons said.

Apartments in Royale Gold Coast were among the largest for sale across the Gold Coast, Mr Parsons said.

The project has also attracted buyers from Brisbane, Melbourne, Sydney and New Zealand.

Sales of Gold Coast apartments have soared this year, partly due to the pandemic encouraging lifestyle changes and migration to coastal markets, given the ability to work from home.

Research house Urbis recorded 450 off-the-plan apartment sales on the Gold Coast over the June quarter, as the number of new apartments available to purchase fell to a seven-year low of just 624 residences.

Rising demand for apartments and a shortage of new supply is bringing in new developers to the Gold Coast, including Melbourne Rich Lister Max Beck, who purchased a site this year and a swathe of new high-rise projects.

This includes Assana, a 52-storey tower with 146 units – the tallest yet in Broadbeach – which this week obtained development approval following an application by Macquarie Developments Group.

Highlighting the focus on appealing to owner-occupiers, MDG head of development and construction Peter Galvin said the developer reduced the number of apartments to 146 from an original 186 and increased the number of parking to 195 spaces from 168 spaces.

“This means our residents can park their cars on our site and not on the street,” he said.

Mr Devine, who co-founded listed developer Devine Ltd and Metro Property Development, paid $45 million for the Surfers Paradise site in June, which is being developed by his Devine Development Group.

He told The Australian Financial Review in June he had spent six months looking for the right site on the Gold Coast to “do something special”.

The project, designed by architects DKO, incorporates loggias – a recessed balcony – that ensures residents can sit outdoors without being buffeted by the wind.

Amenities will include a concierge, wellness centre, a residents’ club with a cinema, library, executive lounge, bar, whiskey locker, a commercial kitchen for caterers and three separate swimming pools.

In September, Sydney-based developer Iris Capital revealed plans for an $800 million high-rise development at Broadbeach.

At the same time, marketing of another Broadbeach project – a 33-level tower with 28 whole-floor apartments priced from $4.95 million – is under way.



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