1907.2019

Meriton Suites is off to Canberra

VETERAN developer Harry Triguboff is taking his Meriton Suites hotel brand to the national capital, acquiring a Canberra site for $23 million.

The Meriton group founder yesterday said a 230-suite five-star hotel would be built on the landmark 1734sqm corner property.

The 40 Allara Street site, occupied by a five-level office building, has been bought from Australian Unity.

The move comes three months after Meriton took a first step into the Melbourne market by buying a $29 million King Street site on which a 303-suite hotel is planned.

Mr Triguboff already is the largest hotel owner and operator in Australia, with 4,945 suites spread across 19 hotels in Sydney, Brisbane and the Gold Coast.

He yesterday said a move into Canberra was a logical progression for Meriton Suites.

“Who knows, we might pop up in places like Adelaide and Perth one day soon.

“Our suites are great performers because they offer people something much more than a basic hotel room but at hard-to-match rates.

“Canberra long has been on our radar because it’s drawing nearly three million visitors a year.

“Many people going there are on business, often politics related, and visit for multiple nights.

“They like the home comforts of having things like a lounge, kitchen and laundry.”

Matthew Thomas, the Meriton Suites general manager, yesterday said Canberra and Melbourne were the chain’s two most requested destinations.

“Hence they were key next steps for our rapid national expansion phase.

“Meriton Suites has five confirmed new hotels marked for 2021-22, including George Street Parramatta, Eastgardens, Surfers Paradise, Melbourne and now Canberra.”

Mr Thomas said Canberra had natural enticement to both domestic and international travellers and the city’s tourism board was doing an exceptional job in driving increased visitation and spend.

He said the planned 17-level Canberra hotel was in a precinct that was going through significant regeneration.

“It’s changing to a mixed-use area that will see more ground-level and after-hours activity.

“We see the new ACT Government headquarters, under construction in Constitution Place, as a massive driver for the location.

“The proposed Canberra casino redevelopment will be a positive for the tourism and leisure markets.”

Mr Thomas said Canberra, because of its status as the purpose-built national capital, was a drawcard for international visitors.

“It’s ranked third by Lonely Planet among its best cities in the world to visit and has international flights arriving daily.”

The Canberra site was sold to Meriton in a deal handled by Andrew Stewart and Nick Purdue, of Savills.

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