Time’s up for notorious Melbourne hotel The Gatwick
Infamous Melbourne boarding house The Gatwick is to be sold to developers after six decades of servicing the city’s vulnerable and down-and-out.
The St Kilda hotel, which has been a magnet for crime throughout its existence – with a well-earned reputation for murders, deaths and drugs – will be sold early next year with an expected price tag of $12 million to $14 million.
The Fitzroy St institution has been owned and operated by twin sisters Yvette Kelly and Rose Banks since the death of their mother Victoria Carbone, who set up the 66-room facility in the 1950s.
Jonathan Walls, from selling agent Lemon Baxter, says the hotel has its share of stories and secrets but that Kelly and Banks had decided the time was right to move on.
“Notorious, whatever you want to call it, it’s quite a place,” Walls says.
It could equally be residential, it could equally be commercial but it certainly won’t remain in its current form
“Fair’s fair, they’ve done it for 40 years and it’s getting harder and harder, more demanding on their time.”
“They run it by themselves so it’s a lot to manage and they’re well and truly due for retirement and taking it easy from now on.”
The Gatwick will be sold via an expressions of interest campaign that ends on March 1, though it can be sold prior.
Walls says a developer is certain to snap up the property – which has three levels and a basement – with its potential to be converted into a boutique hotel, residential accommodation or a commercial hub.
Notorious, whatever you want to call it, it’s quite a place
“It will definitely be a conversion of some sort. You can add two additional floors, but the easiest would be another boutique hotel. They’re certainly booming at the moment with demand for those kinds of properties,” he says.
“It could equally be residential, it could equally be commercial but it certainly won’t remain in its current form.”
Walls says he has been inundated with enquiries from interested buyers in the 24 hours since the property was listed online, with the final price expect to be well in excess of $10 million.
“It’s all been local developers today, we’ve just been bombarded.”
“I think between $12 million and $14 million, within that range, it might be a little bit more, it might be a little bit less.”
The hotel’s sale comes with vacant possession but an extended settlement of period of 12 months, to allow its many permanent residents to find alternative accommodation.