Bell City

Mantra Group is set to manage the 844-room Bell City mixed-use development in Melbourne’s Preston precinct following its purchase by Elanor Investors Group.

The property was sold by Asian Pacific Group for AUD$142.875 million and was brokered by Colliers International’s Gus Moors.

“We have made the decision to sell Bell City for family succession planning reasons, allowing my brother Jonathan and I to take further control of the family business,” said Asian Pacific Group CEO Will Deague.

Currently managed by AHL under the Rydges brand, the dual tower hotels will rebrand as Mantra and BreakFree late December.

The Bell City site consists of two towers – one comprising a 383 room 4.5 star hotel and apartment complex which will carry the Mantra brand, offering extensive conferencing areas and food and beverage outlets; the second tower, which will carry the BreakFree brand, offers 461 hotel rooms, apartments and studios of a 3.5-star level as well as 2.5-star student accommodation, catering to the surrounding La Trobe, RMIT and Melbourne University campuses. An extensive gymnasium and pool is also on site for guest use.

As a true mixed-use development, Bell City also houses retail and commercial tenancies, serviced offices and a 600-space car park.

Mantra Group CEO, Bob East, said the company was keen to expand its presence in Australian capital cities, including dynamic metropolitan locations:

“The consistently high-performing greater Melbourne hotel market combined with the metropolitan location of the Bell City hotels and its unique market drivers, presented us with an exceptional opportunity to capitalise on our existing portfolio of seven hotels in the Melbourne CBD,” East said.

“We are excited to again partner with Elanor Investors Group and on this property and believe it has great potential to service a number of markets.”

Bell City is located within a major development area approximately 11 kilometres (20 minutes) north of Melbourne’s CBD and 20 kilometres (25 minutes) south east of Melbourne Airport. The property is located within the suburb of Preston, positioned within close proximity to a number of major linkages and industries.

Recognised as the leading hotel and events precinct in Melbourne’s north, the purpose-built conference venue complex includes a choice of 15 rooms of varying configurations and sizes- from a vast ballroom with a 500-person capacity to more modestly sized meeting and conference spaces.

“We are confident that this unique property will operate with great success under Mantra Group management and provide travellers with a high quality accommodation and conferencing option in Melbourne’s north,” said Marianne Ossovani, Head of Hotels, Tourism and Leisure at Elanor Investors Group.

Bell City is the fourth management agreement signed between Mantra Group and Elanor Investors Group, joining Peppers Cradle Mountain Lodge, Mantra Wollongong and BreakFree on Clarence Sydney in the shared portfolio.

James Wilkinson

Editor-In-Chief, Hotel Management