Tim Gurner, renowned property magnate and visionary developer, has made a significant move in the real estate world with the acquisition of a prime Sydney Harbour site. Located on the doorstep of Barangaroo, this prestigious location will serve as the canvas for GURNER‘s ambitious new project: a 34-storey, two-tower residential development exuding “ultra-luxury” at every turn. Inspired by his highly successful $550 million Saint Moritz development in Melbourne’s St Kilda, GURNER aims to create an opulent oasis that surpasses all expectations.
The $800 million project, situated at 189 Kent Street in Sydney Harbour, was purchased directly from Greg Shand’s Barana Group, marking a second collaboration between the two companies. The property, which spans an impressive 1,195 square meters, currently houses a commercial office tower dating back to the 1960s. Gurner will honour the existing tenancies until their completion, preserving the continuity of business operations while preparing for the grand transformation that lies ahead.
What sets this acquisition in Sydney Harbour apart is its significance within Gurner’s $2 billion build-to-sell (BTS) development fund. Backed by a global institutional investor, this venture represents the first deployment of capital from the fund’s coffers. Gurner’s portfolio already boasts a remarkable $10 billion pipeline of build-to-rent (BTR) and BTS assets across Australia, solidifying his reputation as an industry trailblazer.
Tim Gurner, the CEO of Gurner Group, expresses his excitement about the possibilities that lie ahead:
“Kent Street represents one of the most prestigious development sites in Sydney; from the moment we were introduced to the site, we knew we had something special.” With a touch of pride in his voice, he continues, “Sydney and this key strategic site, in particular, are crying out for an ultra-luxury offering like Saint Moritz that transports its owners into a world of luxury and service above anything else in the country, inspired by the best hotels around the world.”
Tim Gurner plans to leverage the site’s Sydney location, nestled within one of Australia’s most luxurious and high-end neighbourhoods, to create an unparalleled living experience. Drawing upon his success at Saint Moritz, Gurner aims to scale new heights in terms of design, luxury, service, and amenities. He envisions an extraordinary development that captivates the market with its uniqueness and allure, setting new standards for residential opulence.
Interestingly, the collaboration with Barana Group marks a fortuitous reunion between the two companies, occurring five years after their initial partnership in the St Kilda Novotel site transformation. Gurner speaks fondly of Greg Shand, stating,
“I’ve come to know Greg exceptionally well throughout the Saint Moritz journey, and I know he is proud of the pipeline he has built and, in particular, the successful planning approvals achieved at Kent Street. He wouldn’t entrust this site with just anyone.”
While the construction and labour costs are causing challenges in other states, Gurner believes Sydney presents a robust opportunity due to its higher price-per-square-meter average, motivated buyer pool, and coveted postcodes that appeal to both local and offshore buyers. He emphasizes,
“Sydney is a very unique market with an incredibly low amount of supply and an even smaller opportunity to acquire great sites with harbor views. It is even rarer to be able to transact on a site that also has planning approval ready to go.”
To bring his grand vision to life, Gurner has enlisted the expertise of FJC Studio, who emerged victorious from a fiercely competitive design competition involving local and international architects. With their collaboration, Gurner seeks to secure minor amendments to the existing approval, aiming to reduce the number of apartments and enhance the overall amenity provisions.
The Kent Street project represents an exciting chapter in Tim Gurner’s illustrious career, showcasing his commitment to transforming the urban landscape and setting new benchmarks in luxury living. As the development takes shape, Gurner’s visionary leadership and unwavering dedication to excellence will undoubtedly ensure a city-defining masterpiece, featuring New York-style whole-floor residences that evoke a sense of awe and elegance.
The deal was skillfully brokered by Justin Brown, Tim Rees, and Ben Wicks of CBRE, cementing their role as instrumental facilitators of this groundbreaking transaction. As the project progresses, all eyes will be on Tim Gurner and his team, eagerly awaiting the unveiling of this extraordinary addition to Sydney’s architectural tapestry.
Note: The information presented in this article is for general informational purposes only and should not be relied upon as legal, financial, or professional advice. While we make every effort to fact-check and verify the information presented, we cannot guarantee its accuracy or completeness. Readers are encouraged to independently verify any information they find on our website and to consult with relevant professionals before making any decisions based on the information presented.