11 Mar 2022 | 4 mins

$25m ‘weekender’ sale sets new benchmark : Australian Financial Review

$25m ‘weekender’ sale sets new benchmark : Australian Financial Review

Property records on Victoria’s Mornington Peninsula hinterland were broken this week after an interstate buyer agreed to pay more than $25 million for the opulent weekend retreat of Melbourne businessman Mark Healey, son of the late British billionaire Eddie Healey.

The 6.5 hectare property on Callanans Road in Red Hill South includes a five-bedroom, six-bathroom homestead with horizon pool and spa. There’s also extensive guest quarters, two cocktail lounges, a golf simulator room, wellness retreat and equestrian facilities.

The exact price was not disclosed, but selling agents John Bongiorno of Marshall White and Michael Gibson and Robert Fletcher of Forbes Global Properties confirming it had sold within the quoted price range of $25million to $27million.

That set a record for homes in Mornington Peninsula’s sought after hinterland suburbs of Red Hill, Flinders and Main Ridge, which nestle among vineyards, orchards and hobby farms about 30 kilometres from the clifftop mansions of Portsea, owned by some of Melbourne’s richest families.

It beat the $23.5 million paid last year for Horizon, a luxury mega-mansion on King Street in Flinders sold by developer Brooke Starbuck to corporate investor, polar explorer and author Chris Weyers.

“Portsea has been the traditional holiday playground of Melbourne’s blue-chip families, but they’ve also started to migrate to the Red Hill, Shoreham and Flinders areas,” said Fletcher, a director at Forbes Global Properties.

He told AFR Weekend the sales campaign for the Callanans Road property highlighted also that Mornington had reached the point of becoming alluring to buyers from outside Victoria.

’The buyer of this property does not live in Victoria. They flew in to inspect it. They loved it, and they grabbed it,” he said.

The vendor, Mark Healey, is the son of Eddie Healey who made the bulk of his £2 billion fortune ($3.56bn) developing the Meadowhall Shopping Centre in Sheffield, which he sold in 1999 for £1.17 billion. Eddie Healey passed away in August last year.

Last year Mark Healey notched up the biggest private auction sale in Australian history, after Chemist Warehouse boss Sam Gance paid $43 million luxury for his Toorak mansion on Lansell Road.

The sale of Healey’s Red Hill South weekender was not far off the $30.7 million paid in 2020 by Chemist Warehouse co-founder Mario Verrocchi for the 63ha Morning Star estate, further up the Mornington Peninsula at Mount Eliza.

Earlier this year, private equity boss Ben Gray set a new benchmark for Portsea clifftop mansions after paying $30 million for five-bedroom Westbank on Point Nepean Road offloaded by developer John Gibson and his wife Sue.

Before that Ilyuka, a Spanish mission-style mansion held the record as Portsea’s most expensive home, after it was purchased by Rich Lister John Higgins for $26 million in 2010.

Away from the clifftop mansion of Portsea, Flinders and Red Hill have been notching prices to match including the $20 million sale in October of another Callanans Road mansion in Red Hill South, offloaded by Melbourne lawyer David Lawson and his wife Belinda. The buyer’s identity is hidden behind a trust.

Joining the action, in November, Maison de la Mer, a six-bedroom French-inspired estate on 2.45ha sold for $8.9 million to Alex Gelbak, CEO of OpenCities, which develops digitial platforms for local governments. The vendor was local businesswoman Emma Quigley.

Other owners of luxury homes in the area include former Good Guys chief executive Andrew Muir who paid $17 million in 2017 for seven-bedroom mansion Miramar offered by Daniel Besen, the son of Sussan Group founders Marc and Eva Besen and the nephew of John Gandel.

Commenting on the sale of Mr Healey’s Red Hill South retreat, Mr Gibson said: “It is the kind of home everyone everywhere is seeking right now – a genuine place to breathe.