Sunland Offloads $30m Gold Coast Site


ASX-listed developer Sunland Group has offloaded the undeveloped portion of a Gold Coast masterplanned estate to over-50s resort developer Gemlife for more than $29 million.

The 46.4-hectare subdivision site at Pimpama, on the northern Gold Coast, came with preliminary approval for 267 detached residential lots.

The $29.7 million deal, settled in May, was transacted prior to the Covid-19 pandemic by Ray White's Matthew Fritzsche, Mark Creevey and Tony Williams in December last year, after Sunland decided not to proceed with developing the remainder of the 105-hectare "The Heights" project in the housing growth corridor between Brisbane and the Gold Coast.

Fritzsche said the expressions of interest campaign attracted plenty of enquiries.

“There's limited developable land on the Gold Coast of this scale and quality, and it showed in the strong number of enquiries we had throughout the campaign.

The surplus land site is around 20 minutes from the central Gold Coast and 40 minutes from the Brisbane CBD in an elevated position within the estate.

“The target list comprised local, interstate and international groups, and interest was predominantly from the residential and home estate sector,” Fritzsche said.

The December sale took place amid diminished sales activity in Pimpama after a boom in house and land development in the area, including nearby Ormeau and Coomera.

Creevey said the Gemlife acquisition highlighted that even in testing times, development sites with an element of approval would always be appealing.

“This really is an exciting project and we’re looking forward to seeing Gemlife deliver yet another quality project,” he said.

Over-50s resort developer Gemlife, led by Adrian Puljich, is a Queensland-based joint venture between parent company, Living Gems and financial partner, Thakral Capital which has eight "country club"-style resorts across Australia in locations including Bribie Island, Tweed Waters and Lennox Head.

Creevey said the site was in one of south-east Queensland’s most recognised land estates, in a market with rapidly diminishing forward land supply.

“It's a high-quality estate with a significant entry statement, boulevard roads and footpaths, landscaping throughout and features central parkland.”

Williams said "The Heights" offered a real point of difference as the land areas provided panoramic views that incorporated the Gold Coast City skyline and hinterland.

“Pimpama is experiencing a major transformation with new parks, school, sporting facilities, and multi-million dollar retail precincts,” he said.

“In 2018, the ABS ranked Pimpama the fastest growing region in Queensland and the fastest growing region in Australia, outside of a capital city.

“More than $300 million in new infrastructure is under construction nearby, including the $80 million Pimpama Sports Hub delivering world-class aquatic centre, tennis courts and netball courts.”

The vendor, residential developer Sunland, led by managing director Sahba Abedian, canned an off-market share buyback scheme in March this year due to market volatility caused by coronavirus, saying at the time it remained in a strong position with sufficient working capital and cashflow from settlement of property sales.

Sunland has 13 projects under way along Australia’s east coast and a $3 billion portfolio comprising 3,853 residential homes, urban land lots, multi-storey apartments, and an emerging retail and commercial portfolio.

Last year, the Brisbane-based group offloaded a number of Gold Coast assets, putting its Mariner’s Cove retail village and marina precinct at The Spit on the market, and offloading convenience retail asset Lakeview Retail Centre adjoining its "The Lakes" precinct at Mermaid Waters in order to up capital to invest back into the masterplanned community.

Sunland's Gold Coast projects include a high-rise residential development in Mermaid Beach and the boutique Magnoli Apartments mid-rise development in Palm Beach.


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