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Famed “Melbourne House” building comes to market offering ultimate versatility

Oliver Hay • 08/08/2023

Central Melbourne CBD freehold with planning approval provides for a range of outcomes

Cushman & Wakefield and JLL have been exclusively appointed to sell Melbourne House, located at 360 Little Bourke Street between Elizabeth Street and Hardware Lane within the city’s tightly held Retail Core, close to Melbourne’s GPO and Bourke Street Mall. 

The property is strategically situated on the corner of Whitehart Lane, and surrounded by several well known hospitality offerings as well as Melbourne’s eclectic mix of commercial, retail and residential developments, creating a 24/7 precinct of activity. 

360 Little Bourke Street, Melbourne

“Seldom does such a prime opportunity present itself to the international market, especially in one of the most desirable and bustling pockets of the Melbourne CBD”, Cushman & Wakefield’s International Director Oliver Hay said. 

Melbourne House was constructed in approximately 1932 in an interwar Chicagoesque style and comprises a six-storey retail and commercial building with a total floor area just shy of 5,000 square metres (approx.). The building was previously owner-occupied by the Leo Cussen Institute of Law for almost 30 years. The current owner has added significant value in achieving a planning permit for a multilevel mixed-use commercial tower. 

“We’ve seen very few assets in this pocket of the CBD change hands in recent years, and the property’s character features and corner landholding with large street frontages make it the ideal Melbourne repositioning or development opportunity. Given the flexible zoning of the site, we expect to see interest from groups looking to explore a range of uses including hospitality, boutique hotel, co-living and student accommodation,” said JLL Executive Director Josh Rutman. 

According to recently released statistics from the City of Melbourne, the CBD is seeing higher levels of foot traffic than the period immediately preceding the pandemic. Shopping centres in the precinct are showing stronger trading figures which bodes well for any future investment or development in the Retail Core.  

The city has also seen a tourism and student population resurgence which has prompted developers to pursue sites to accommodate this renewed demand for space in the CBD.

“The entire building has been cleared out so that core structure can be utilised, providing the new owner maximum flexibility to capitalise on the Melbourne CBD’s dynamic retail market and to explore investment, value add, redevelopment and owner occupation possibilities,” Mr Rutman said. 

Mr Hay said “With direct access to the Elizabeth Street tram network and Melbourne Central Train Station, the accessibility of Melbourne House is truly unrivalled. This precinct of Melbourne’s CBD is now a true “24/7” destination to live, work and study, shop and be entertained.”  Melbourne House is being offered for sale by International Expressions of Interest closing Wednesday 13th September (AEST). 

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