Ben Hurley Reporter

Ben covers the property industry and has a keen interest in entrepreneurship and travel writing. He speaks Mandarin and previously covered housing and urban affairs for The Australian Financial Review.

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Bob Ell puts massive $25m harbour-front block up for sale as prestige market stirs

Published 20 February 2013 11:55, Updated 04 February 2014 00:15

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Bob Ell puts massive $25m harbour-front block up for sale as prestige market stirs

Bob Ell’s $25 million Cremorne block dwarfs surrounding properties Photo: Supplied

Billionaire property developer Bob Ell has listed an enormous harbour-front block of land on Sydney’s lower north shore, complete with approved plans to build a home that will make surrounding mansions look small.

Spread across four titles on around 4400 square metres of land, the property on Lodge Road, Cremorne has a price guide of $25 million. This is a $9 million premium on the $16 million Ell paid for the site in 2008, thanks in part to the development approval which came after a court jostle with North Sydney Council.

The view from Bob Ell’s Cremorne harbour-front property.Photo: Supplied

“It’s really a one-off opportunity to create something pretty amazing,” says selling agent Richard Simeon from Richardson & Wrench, Mosman. “When you have a house with over 2700 square metres internally, that’s the equivalent of four big properties.”

The approved plans allow a nine-bedroom home, complete with parking for eight cars, two pools and a rooftop tennis court.

The asking price is ambitious after years of underperformance in the prestige property sector, but some market watchers are predicting a recovery after recent improvements in the sharemarket. Simeon says he sold $87 million of property from August to December last year, including four homes worth more than $10 million. Two of those four went to buyers from China.

“In Mosman we have in the past been driven by the investment banking sector,” Simeon says. “Even though the bonuses haven’t flown through as much in the past 12 months, they’re all heavily in the stock market and the 30 per cent growth means they’re starting to see some positive action.”

Simon Feilich from prestige property valuers Dyson Austen says he expects the value of expensive homes to rise by the end of this year.

An artist’s impression of the approved nine-bedroom home. Photo: Supplied

“It’s a confidence driven market,” Feilich says. “You have an increase in stocks and shares and you do have an increase in confidence.”