A new luxury hotel will become the landmark for the New South Wales State Government’s $2.5 billion international convention, exhibition and entertainment precinct at Darling Harbour.
Principal of Schwartz Family Company, Dr Jerry Schwartz, has signed a conditional agreement to purchase the ICC Hotel which will be developed by Lend Lease and managed by Accor.
According to The Australian, the multimillionaire is buying the hotel for about $368 million and is planning a heliport atop the hotel.
The hotel will have around 600 rooms over 35-storeys to support the new ICC Sydney and Sydney’s growing accommodation demand.
Principal of Schwartz Family Company, Dr Jerry Schwartz, said “our company has played a significant role in the development of Sydney’s tourism and hospitality sector over the past decade, and we are now operating some 2,000 rooms across the city".
"This is our first new-build hotel and our investment will play a key role in building Sydney’s reputation as one of the world’s premier cities for hosting conventions, exhibitions and events.”
The new hotel will be operated under Accor’s luxury 5-star Sofitel brand, who operated the precinct's first hotel in 1991.
Savills Managing Director Hotels Australia and New Zealand Michael Simpson who brokered the deal, said the new hotel comes at a time where these is an under supply in the Sydney market.
“With an acute under supply of new luxury hotels, robust performance and continued demand growth, the delivery of this new hotel is a landmark deal not only for the Sydney market but for the Australian hotel industry," said Mr Simpson.
"The luxury hotel market remains highly attractive and, with Sydney’s rising prominence as a global city, it highlights the growing demand for quality 5 star hotels.
“Sydney has not had a new luxury hotel built in over 15 years. The Sydney market has experienced robust and continued growth over the last 5 years, with performance for year to December 2013 up 7.9% over the year to December 2012. Performance this year to July is up another 7.6% compared to the previous corresponding period.”
“As a proud Sydney-sider, I believe the re-energising of Darling Harbour has long been overdue and the NSW Government deserves credit for taking hard decisions based around a long-term vision for Sydney’s future development," Dr Schwartz added.
Construction of the hotel is expected to start in late 2014, and it is due for completion in the first half of 2017.