Citygrove, the investor/developer run by Toby Baines, has made its first acquisition in Germany ahead of an expansion across the country.
The group has bought a 150,000 sq ft site from the City of Düsseldorf where there is potential for a hotel, residential, student or office scheme. The site, which adjoins the city’s main central station, does not yet have planning consent but Citygrove is keen to build a 450- to 480-bedroom hotel with a GDV of around €80m (£64m) on the plot.
It is already in early talks with a number of international operators for the site.
Baines said: “We are looking at a number of opportunities in key German towns. The country has such a strong economy but lacks hotel and student opportunities. For example, there are 42,000 students in Düsseldorf and no purpose-built accommodation.”
He added that there was strong institutional demand from both local and UK-based funds, such as M&G Real Estate, for the finished product across Germany.
Citygrove has been active in continental Europe for a number of years with an established business in Spain. It opened an office in Hamburg recently in preparation for its German expansion.
In Spain it has bought a 350,000 sq ft retail park in Terrassa, near Barcelona, where it has prelet some 50% of the space and now started on site. The scheme is scheduled to complete next year.
Cushman & Wakefield is letting agent at Terrassa; Colliers International advised on the Düsseldorf sale.