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News release


NEXT Hotel and Forever 21, Brisbane CBD sells for AUD 133m

A brand-new hotel and retail investment launching NEXT Hotel and Australia’s first Forever 21 at 72 Queen Street Mall in Brisbane has been purchased by Challenger Ltd

​A hotel and retail mixed-use investment property located in Brisbane’s high-profile Queen Street Mall has been purchased by Challenger Ltd for AUD 133 million. Both tenants are secured under 10 year leases.

The completely refurbished hotel and retail asset, located in a key Brisbane CBD location at 72 Queen Street Mall, represents the first international launch of the NEXT Hotel brand and the Australian debut of global fashion retailer Forever 21. Queen Street Mall is one of Australia’s busiest pedestrian malls, with over 26 million visitors annually.

Dean Dransfield of Dransfield Hotels & Resorts and JLL’s Head of Retail Investments – Australasia Simon Rooney, together with JLL Hotels, were advisors to the owner, SilverNeedle Hospitality, on this transaction.

According to Mr Rooney, this type of sizeable and refurbished CBD asset is in high demand in Australia. “CBD retail markets are going through a transformational phase, welcoming a new wave of international retailers that are expanding into the Australian market.

“Redevelopment activity along Queen Street Mall is driving a revival in CBD retailing via refreshed supply, new international brands and an expansion of the retail offering and amenity of the entire retail core.

“Availability of suitable sites has been a barrier to entry for some of these international tenants that typically require larger stores than their domestic counterparts, and are looking to secure flagship retail locations such as this.

“We are in the initial stages of a recovery in retail trading conditions and it is fuelling investor confidence in the sector.
“Retail investment market activity remains elevated compared with historical norms. CBD assets have been a key target for many investors, particularly for assets in super-prime CBD locations which very rarely offered for sale” said Mr Rooney.

According to Dean Dransfield, Director of Dransfield Hotels & Resorts, “With its state-of-the-art technology and design, Brisbane’s NEXT Hotel is in an ideal position to attract business and leisure visitors. The rare sale and leaseback investment was highly sought-after by institutions, international investors and high-net wealth individuals as it provides simplicity, security, scale and upside as market conditions strengthen.”

The landmark hotel and retail property has undergone an approx. AUD 50 million renovation to take advantage of the prime location for business travellers on weekdays and leisure markets after hours and on weekends. It is located close to key CBD demand drivers including the recently refurbished Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre, and several of the city’s upcoming major infrastructure projects.

The property comprises almost 2,000 sqm of prime retail space leased to international retailer Forever 21, and a 304-room, 4.5 star NEXT Hotel with an average room size of approx. 28 sqm. The hotel component features a large club floor with an outdoor pool overlooking Queen Street Mall; and over 1,300 sqm of food and beverage, recreation and meeting facilities. This new flagship NEXT Hotel is based on SilverNeedle’s market intelligence, having operated the Chifley Hotel, previously located in the building, for over 15 years.