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Darwin commercial property sets a new record

A Darwin transit centre, located in the centre of major shopping and entertainment block has sold for a record price, highlighting the strength of the local market.

The 6200sq m Darwin Transit Centre was purchased for $16.25 million after attracting 17 bids, making it one of the “strongest responses” to a sales campaign the city has seen.

The centrally located property is anchored by the Australian Venue Co’s Shenannigans Irish Pub, which has two backpacker hostels, with about 475 beds, and a range of retail, food, drink and entertainment venues.

The property is currently generating $1.4 million per annum in income and its sale price represented $2100 per square metre with a 6.09 per cent yield.

Sam Biggins of Colliers’ restructuring services team, said the strong sales price and interest was due, in part, to how Darwin has held up in the current environment.

“People see the NT as having borne COVID-19 pretty well and, with the increase in its population, spending is rising and there are some good buying opportunities,” he said.

“I think in the past people may not have paid Darwin much attention, largely because of geographical reasons.

“But now the local economy looks very strong with tourism and the defence industry and big federal and territory government spending, so its profile has soared.”

Colliers Darwin Director Craig Inkster agrees optimism is high in Darwin right now.

“That it performed so well is a testament to how Darwin is now viewed with so much optimism, and as a result of conversations about land rates, yields, interest rates and the dynamics affecting tenants,” Mr Inkster said.

“The uplift in trading conditions has been to the benefit of most of the tenants with Australians travelling so much more internally and filling the backpackers’ resorts and that patronage flowing on to the pubs.

“So now there’s a huge amount of positivity in the landscape. In my 10 years with Colliers, this was the strongest response to a sales campaign I’ve ever seen.”

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Rowan Crosby

Rowan Crosby is a freelance journalist specialising in finance and real estate.