Byron Bay bound Catalano lists $15m St Kilda mansion
Media baron Antony Catalano has listed his St Kilda West Victorian style mansion with price expectations of at least $15.5m following his relocation to Byron Bay where he is planning to develop a luxury accommodation complex valued at more than $55m - as an offshoot of his boutique Rae's at Wategos hotel.
Despite owning three properties in Byron Bay, and renting a fourth, Mr Catalano says he is also keen to buy a residential property in Sydney - with suburbs such as Vaucluse, Point Piper and Watsons Bay of appeal depending on the style of house he can find.
Mr Catalano will retain his $30.5m penthouse in the St Moritz development in St Kilda as his Melbourne bolthole but has listed the seven-bedroom and seven-bathroom St Kilda West house, known as Victoria Mansion, fronting Beaconsfield Parade, through agent Jock Langley of Abercromby's.
With interior decoration by his wife Stefanie, the four level property is being sold via a private expressions of interest campaign closing on May 31.
Mr Langley said the 1890-built Victorian style mansion returns a 'huge' $40,000 in rental per month and is expected to fetch between $15.5m and just over $17m.
There are already parties interested in purchasing the property which is close to the old Danish Club which underwent a spectacular renovation at the hands of fashion owner, Naomi Milgrom. She has since bought several nearby houses adjoining the 100 year plus Danish Club.
"This is an amazing opportunity, it is one of Melbourne's grand homes," Mr Langley said.
Given Victoria Mansion's proximity to the waterfront Mr Langley said it was possible the buyer could negotiate to acquire a lease on a mooring at the nearby marina from Mr Catalano. CoreLogic records show Mr Catalano, who once headed Domain, paid $4.6m for the Beaconsfield property in 2011.
"It's like a New York or London townhouse. It's a big home and will appeal to someone with a large family like mine, or a normal sized family who want to work from home," Mr Catalano said. "The previous owner was a film producer, Bob Weiss, and the ground floor was used as a film production area."
"Initially when we came up to Byron we stayed at the Rae's hotel, having had a house here since 2007 we decided to stay on. I had six kids doing distance learning at one stage, and we decided to call it home."
Mr Catalano has just bought the largest parcel of land in Wategos, some 4240 sqm in Brownell Drive, for $24.7m in February.
He plans to build Rae's residences and extend the hotel brand into more house-style accommodation for families, rather than smaller hotel rooms. "Once you have a family you could book the property as a residence," he says.
He plans to spend at least $30m, maybe more, developing ten dwellings on the site, at $3m apiece.
While planning controls allow one dwelling per 400 sqm Mr Catalano is undecided whether to build less villas, but make them larger.
"I am not sure if I will scale it back and have bigger homes, there is obviously no shortage of rental demand in Wategos," he said, adding that the site is across the road from Geoff Morgan's old house on 630 sqm which the HR guru sold for a record-breaking $22m late last year.
"I got seven times the land size for roughly the same price," said Mr Catalano, who rents next door and is able to see the three properties he owns in Wategos from his balcony.
Meanwhile, Mr Catalano's Melbourne bolthole will be the double storey penthouse in the St Moritz complex he purchased for $30.5m. On the 7th and 8th floors the penthouse will be used by his children and family friends as well as Mr Catalano when he heads south.
"We are not abandoning Melbourne," he said. "But I would love to buy one in Sydney. My wife is desperate to move to Sydney, we will probably relocate to Sydney once the kids are in high school. Sydney would be a nice change.
"For a Melburnian every part of Sydney is beautiful. I can't think of any city which would be more beautiful."
Originally published as Byron bound Catalano lists $15m St Kilda mansion