W Hotel adds more prestige to Melbourne’s Collins Arch precinct

By The Australian (Ben Wilmot)

The pre-sale of the W-branded hotel to Japan’s Daisho group for more than $200 million is one of Melbourne’s largest single hotel transactions. The deal significantly decreases risk for the project for Cbus and could spark presales of apartments in the complex and also add prestige to the office component of the project.

The acquisition of the deep-pocketed Japanese investor was flagged by The Australian last year and marks the second W hotel brand in Australia, with Brisbane to sport a new W by year end.

Cbus Property chief executive Adrian Pozzo said the W Hotels brand, together with Daisho Development Melbourne as hotel owner, befitted the project, which he believes will help transform Melbourne. “As a global symbol of style and luxury, W Melbourne will bring dining and function ­facilities benefits that will further enhance the precinct for not just hotel guests but residents, tenants and Melbourne locals,” he said.

The W Melbourne will sport 294 rooms across 15 levels, including 40 suites, as well as a cocktail bar, restaurant, day spa, pool, gym, conferencing and ballroom ­facilities.

The hotel deal, brokered by Michael Simpson of Savills, was signed off last year. It will see ­Daisho, which also owns Sydney’s Park Hyatt, commit to buying the completed property.

“This is a globally significant deal, bringing a world-class hotel brand in W Hotels to Melbourne’s most ambitious architectural project, set to be a world-class destination for Melbourne visitors and locals alike,” Mr Simpson said.

The Collins Arch hotel deal was hotly contested by investors, with several luxury brands also showing interest.

The W Melbourne at Collins Arch will be located in the eastern tower of the landmark dual tower project.

Marriott International vice-president Australia, New Zealand and Pacific Sean Hunt said the group was also talking with Grocon and Chinese-backed Greaton to bring a W Hotel to Darling Harbour in Sydney as part of the $700m The Ribbon project.

Mr Hunt said a group had signed a letter of intent to open a W, but he would not be drawn on further details.

“We’re extremely excited to be working with Daisho Development Melbourne and Cbus Property to bring a second W Hotel to Australia,” Mr Hunt said.

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