Perth’s apartment market going sky high as multi-million dollar developments sell for record prices

Source: The West Australian

A new record has been set in WA’s property market, with developer Paul Blackburne revealing the penthouse buyer at his upcoming ONE Subiaco development had upgraded to a $19.3 million abode.

Blackburne said the mystery buyer had initially signed on to buy a $17 million penthouse, in a deal announced in July 2020.

But the buyer later opted to purchase the apartment below, connecting the two via an internal staircase, and taking the total price up to $19.3 million. And then spent another $3.7 million on neighbouring apartments, taking the total outlay to $23 million.

The price exceeds his $16 million record for a Subiaco sub-penthouse.

For this hefty sum, the buyer will get 1450sqm of indoor and outdoor living space on the top levels of the 24-storey Subiaco tower.

The abode includes six bedrooms, two living areas, a games room, a fully-contained nanny suite and guest suite, plus a pool on the 350sqm balcony.

The penthouse has a separate 130sqm storeroom and 150sqm 10-car garage, and the inhabitants will also share in 2400sqm of private residents’ amenities, including a gym, sauna, pool and gardens.

Blackburne, managing director of Blackburne Property Group, said the deposit had been paid and the rest would be payable upon completion next year.

“All upgrades are being finalised soon so it will end up at $23 million,” Blackburne said.

“He (the owner) is a returned expat with a young family. This is a new record for WA.”

Blackburne revealed upgrades to the biggest penthouse at the upcoming The Grove Residences on Stirling Highway had boosted the price to $23 million, up from the initial listing price of $19 million.

Whoever buys this penthouse will get more than 2000sqm of exclusive living space, including more than 1000sqm indoors, a 600sqm balcony, a 16-car garage and a 130sqm storeroom. The buyer will have access to 3500sqm of residents’ facilities, including heated saunas and cold plunge pools.

The price tags may seem outrageous, but according to the property sector, these penthouses are actually a bargain. The two penthouses cost about $14,000/sqm for all exclusive space, including car bays.

The Mansion Australia 2017 report said Sydney prestige apartments were priced between $25,000-$50,000/sqm while in Melbourne, $15,000-$25,000/sqm was the norm.

President of the Real Estate Institute of WA, Damian Collins, said prices had broken the $100,000/sqm barrier in Sydney, with the $140 million sale at Barangaroo South Tower 1.

Asia’s most expensive apartment — by the metre — makes Perth prices seem like chicken feed. A penthouse in Hong Kong’s affluent Mid Levels neighbourhood sold last month for $76 million — or $243,000/sqm, for a 314sqm penthouse.

“In Perth we are still in bargain territory, with near-new Crawley and South Perth waterfront luxury penthouses and apartments going from $16,000-$26,000/sqm,” Collins said.

Finbar chief operations officer Ronald Chan said the upcoming Civic Heart penthouse was value for money, given its 360 degree views of the river and the city skyline from the 36th floor of the tallest building south of the river.

The 472sqm of exclusive space, including the three-car garage, costs about $20,000/sqm.

Agents for the penthouse at The Towers at Elizabeth Quay declined to comment on the property. It was initially listed, in 2019, for $12.5 million for the 460sqm apartment — about $27,000/sqm. This figure does not include the four car bays or store-room.

The Mardalup apartment complex in East Perth, which has been on the market for several years, is chasing a new record, with a price tag between $25 million and $35 million.

The 1900sqm abode, including 900sqm internally and a 775sqm balcony, is priced between $13,150/sqm and $18,500/sqm.

Ray White agent Brent Compton said the six-bedroom, eight-bathroom, two-level, waterfront penthouse had stunning views of Optus Stadium, Matagarup Bridge and the city.

And it seems the battle of the penthouses is heating up, as agents compete in a very small pool of buyers able to afford the hefty prices.

“If you look at what far inferior apartments are selling for in South Perth or the western suburbs, the Mardalup penthouse represents gilt-edged buying per square metre,” he said.