CBRE seeks Middle East buyer for prime London shopping centre
A team from CBRE’s investment arm paid a visit to the UAE and Qatar last week in a bid to drum up interest from potential buyers in a luxury London shopping arcade.
CBRE has been appointed by New York-based property development firm Thor Equities and by European investment fund Meyer Bergman to sell Burlington Arcade, which runs between Piccadilly and Bond Street, next to the Royal Academy.
The centre, which is built on a half-acre site, contains 37,000 square feet of retail space and has the longest covered shopping street in the UK.
Its stores sell mainly luxury brands and its current owners, who bought the property in 2010, have overseen a redesign led by British architect Jamie Fobert that involved restoring original details.
It is understood to be on the market for Â£400 million (Dh1.84 billion).
Phil Cann, the head of UK retail at CBRE, expects the centre’s sale to be one of the biggest to complete in the London retail market this year. He said the value of deals transacted in the London retail sector last year was Â£2.3bn, which was lower than the Â£3bn experienced during an “exceptional” 2015, but in line with long-term trends. He said that Brexit has been more favourable for London’s retail property market than for other sectors, thanks to higher spending by tourists.
“Customers are coming to the shops and buying goods in flagship London stores that were 20 per cent more expensive the year before,” he said.
He added that a property such as Burlington Arcade would have “global appeal” because it is a freehold property, a heritage building and it specialises in luxury retail.
“Certainly in the region there has always been interest in the asset,” he said.
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