BUSINESS

Astir Palace to be sold off on Tuesday

ILIAS BELLOS

TAGS: Privatizations

The new agreement for the concession of the Astir Palace Resort at Vouliagmeni, southern Athens, will be signed on Tuesday by main stakeholder National Bank, the state privatization fund (TAIPED) and the preferred bidder, Jermyn Street Real Estate Fund.

TAIPED chief Stergios Pitsiorlas told Kathimerini that the new deal includes fresh timetables and the submission of a new special zoning plan early next year under terms the investor has accepted.

The agreement provides for the same price, 400 million euros, and, as Pitsiorlas explained, “it provides for a clearly milder development than that which the previous plan dictated and was correctly rejected by the Council of State.” The new plan is expected to take the objections of the country’s highest administrative court into account.

It took months of consultations for the new agreement to be reached with the preferred bidder, while it will take more time, likely months, before the transaction is completed. The original invitation of interest was issued on January 16, 2013. After deadline extensions and the short-listing on May 2, 2013, Jermyn Street was chosen as the winning bidder on February 13, 2014. However, its bid hit a snag a few months later due to the rejection of its plan by the CoS, which objected to the development of up to 100 luxurious holiday houses. The new deal is said to provide for fewer houses.

The plot concerned has a total surface area of 304,429.17 square meters. Its northern part belongs to a National Bank subsidiary that stands to receive 300 million euros, while TAIPED (which will receive 100 million euros) is the owner of the southern part and the bank has the usufruct until 2029.

The complex includes the abandoned Aphroditi hotel, the Arion Palace and Nafsika-Westin hotels, the property housing the installations of the Nautical Club of Vouliagmeni, the Vouliagmeni marina, and large green spaces.

Jermyn Street Real Estate Fund IV LP is led by AGC Equity Partners with the participation of two state funds, from Abu Dhabi and Kuwait, along with other Arab investors, Turkey’s Dogus Group and two other AGC funds.

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