28/05/2008 - 22:00

Marinas to market

28/05/2008 - 22:00

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Marinas to market

With demand for boat pens in Perth at an all-time high, two of the state's biggest private marinas are up for sale.

Como-based developer Port Bouvard has put its marina of the same name on the market; it has 152 pens and is fully leased, with 21 pens under construction.

Also open to expressions of interest is Lester Group's slightly larger Pier 21 marina in North Fremantle.

The site has 171 pens, which could be expanded in size.

CB Richard Ellis hotels manager Ryan McGinnity, who is managing both marina sales, said interest had been strong from both local and interstate investors.

During the past few years, demand for pens in Perth has led to boat owners offering to pay cash upfront or joining long waiting lists.

Lester Group's Blair Gerrard said the decision to sell had been prompted by this strong level of demand.

However, he said it was difficult to predict what the site could sell for, given it would be attractive to a range of buyers, including boat brokers, developers and private investors.

Similarly, Port Bouvard chief executive officer Ross Neumann said the boating industry's strong growth in the past few years had influenced the company's decision.

"Owning a marina is not part of our core business, and if we get a price we're happy with, then we'll sell," he said.

"The marina is fully let at the moment and there's great potential for growth."

Port Bouvard is currently marketing the final 26 apartments in its Oceanique development, which were originally pegged for syndication before the US sub-prime crisis forced a change in strategy.

While Mr Neumann acknowledged that the apartment market had started to cool in some areas, he said the project was unlikely to be affected.

"Our [development] is still two years away, and we believe things will be better then. If you look to the fundamentals, I think it will be much better," he said.

The first stage of Oceanique, which is located in the Port Bouvard development, has already sold.

Several of the 41 apartments sold off the plan for more than $5 million in 2007.

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