03 Jul 2022 | 3 mins

How They Closed It: Selling The Rich History Of A Landmark Australia Estate - Forbes

How They Closed It: Selling The Rich History Of A Landmark Australia Estate - Forbes Forbes featured property

When it comes to the world of luxury real estate, closing a deal can be as nuanced as it is cut-throat. Here’s how one of Melbourne’s top producing teams sold a storied mansion in one of the area’s most sought-after suburbs.


The 3,370-square-meter mansion was listed in late April by Michael Kantor, nephew to media mogul Rupert Murdoch, and his wife Silvia. PRIVATE PROPERTY GLOBAL

The Who: With nearly 80 years of combined experience in marketing and selling luxury properties, the director team atPrivate Property Global of Michael Gibson, Ken Jacobs, Tracey Atkins and Robert Fletcher has amassed a long list of satisfied clients that include some of Australia’s most elite residents. Authorities on Victoria’s luxury markets, the team specializes in Melbourne’s most sought-after neighborhoods and suburbs where they completed a number of notable sales, including their most recent sale involving the landmark Namarong estate, which recently sold for more than AUD 24 million (about US $16.68 million).


The estate was built in 1868 for a wealthy shipping merchant who selected the home’s hillside position in order to watch the comings and goings of his ships in Port Phillip Bay. PRIVATE PROPERTY GLOBAL

The What: Built in 1868 for a wealthy shipping merchant who chose the home’s perched, hillside location to watch over his ships moving in and out of Port Phillip Bay, Namarong sits on roughly 3,370 square meters of manicured grounds. The home’s iconic, Victorian facade is fronted with ornate corbels and cornices, a gently-sloped roof and an ivy-coated facade. Inside, an artful combination of classical and modern elements blend to make a timeless yet contemporary feel. Traditional molding, interior columns and an array of glass-paneled french doors can be seen next to more fashionable touches such as minimalist framed windows, a vibrant, orange carpeted stairway and sleek cabinetry. Other highlights include a stately library, a rounded terrace and a sprawling tennis court, as well as a movie theater, wine cellar and outdoor swimming pool.


The Where: Located in Stonnington just south of well-known wealthy enclave, Toorak, Armadale sits alongside many of Melbourne’s most premier neighborhoods, says Gibson. As such, the central, inner suburb is home to some of the most expensive properties in the state. “The municipalities of Stonnington, Boroondara and Bayside hold a majority of the key assets for homes in all of Victoria,” explained Gibson.

The How: Marketing was heavily focused on the estate’s storied history, says Atkins. “Our company is based around a media and real estate approach to all of our trophy assets. So instead of just thinking about getting them onto the market, it's really important to us that we place them and promote them and get the story behind them, particularly with this one because it has such a rich history.” With the estate’s pedigree in mind, the team also opted for an expression of interest campaign where prospective buyers are invited to submit their best offer. “Generally we run an expression of interest campaign at the center of the market with roughly a four to five-week marketing period and an end date attached to it. Ideally, you have two parties in a private auction at the end of the process, and that’s what occurred in this instance.” Finalizing sales with a private auction is “certainly common in Melbourne,” added Gibson, “with nine out of ten times bringing out the best price for the vendor.”


Exterior highlights include a rounded terrace overlooking the estate’s manicured grounds, a swimming pool and an impressive tennis court. PRIVATE PROPERTY GLOBAL

The Right Now: The sale comes at an interesting time for the Australian housing market which is seeing a cool down after an unprecedented 2021. However, the luxury market seems to remain strong, according to Gibson. “Given that interest rates have just ticked up and given other headwinds, like the pandemic, oil prices, war—it’s still surprisingly strong. In fact, we had another sale last week of just over 30 million which, along with this sale, exceeded our expectations.”

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