GOLD Coast-based property developer Halcyon has snared the Gainsborough Greens Golf Club from Mirvac as it lays plans for its biggest bite yet of the region's highly profitable over-50s market.
Halcyon is acquiring the 18-hole golf course, comprising 114ha, and an additional 34ha site for an undisclosed sum in a deal that is due to settle next year.
The move is part of the planned sale of the golf club by Mirvac which has been reaping the rewards of the housing boom in the Gold Coast's northern fringe over the past year.
Halcyon, headed by Bevan Geissmann and Paul Melville and backed by Gold Coast property veterans Gordon and Archie Douglas, has developed a string of over-50s residential projects on the Gold and Sunshine Coasts in the past decade.
It is planning a 500-home project for over-50s on the Gainsborough site, its biggest development to date.
"The northern Gold Coast's growth story is still unfolding and we are pleased to have a significant stake in its evolution," says Geissmann.
"We spent some time looking for a site with scale in the Brisbane-Gold Coast corridor to meet escalating demand from over 50s in this area.
"The golf element is particularly attractive to our market and played a large part in our decision to establish a Halcyon community at Gainsborough Greens."
Under the terms of the agreement, the Gainsborough Greens Golf Club, which has about 450 members, will continue to be operated by GC Golf Management, operator of Palm Meadows golf course at Carrara.
Halcyon also plans to develop a new clubhouse to replace the existing facility which was developed by Japanese investors in the 1980s.
The existing club house will continue to operate until the new facility opens, around mid-2018.
Mirvac acquired the Gainsborough Greens Golf Club at Pimpama as part of its acquisition of the 490ha Gainsborough Greens development site in 2009.
Since then it has developed about 500 of the 2200 home sites in the master-planned community, with the pace of development picking up strongly in the past year in line with the Gold Coast's resurgent property market.
Mirvac's head of residential John Carfi says the sale has been on the cards for some time as golf course management is not a core activity for the development group, although integral to its marketing of the estate.
"Mirvac is not a golf club operator and we wanted to ensure the long-term future of the course by finding the right owner who could deliver a new and improved offering for our residents and the wider community," he says.
"While we fielded a number of offers for the course, this deal was really a win-win for all involved.
"Halcyon's involvement has a dual benefit. Its proposed development will enhance the overall community and diversity of homes on offer and, at the same time, ensure a long-term commitment to the quality of the golf course, which was a number one priority for us."
Carfi says demand for homesites in the northern Gold Coast, and Pimpama in particular, continues to surge.
"We have been fast-tracking releases just to keep pace with more than $26 million in sales of new homesites this year alone," he says.
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