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Seize Days Bay mixed-use offering

612 Marine Drive, Days Bay

The two-level mixed-use building which is home to a ground-floor restaurant and a café, along with a generous first floor apartment in the seaside settlement of Days Bay, Lower Hutt, has been placed on the market for sale for the first time in 30 years.

The freehold land and buildings currently has Sea Salt Restaurant operating out of the prominent ground floor tenancy on the corner of Moana Road and Marine Parade, and Cotti Mediterranean café in the adjacent street-level space on the Marine Parade frontage.

These businesses have established leases in place and will continue trading as usual.

Upstairs, there is a luxurious four-bedroom, two-bathroom apartment with expansive harbour views which will have vacant possession upon settlement.

The original building on this site was damaged by fire in 1989. At that time, Breakers on the Bay restaurant was in operation there.

The commercial ground floor component of this replacement building was completed in 1990 and for many years was the premises of Cobar Restaurant, named after the passenger ferry SS Cobar that plied the harbour from Days Bay to Wellington city from 1906 to 1948.

The residential apartment was added in the mid-1990s.

Mark Walker and Andrew Smith of Bayleys Commercial Wellington are marketing the land and buildings, which are zoned General Business, with their residential colleague, Grant Henderson.

The property in its entirety will be sold as one lot, with tenders closing at 4pm, 11th March.

Walker says the location close to the Days Bay wharf means the hospitality-based property is a popular and convenient dining destination for locals and visitors to the area, and is also a desirable place to call home.

“The regular East by West Ferries service between Days Bay and Wellington sees the City Cat and the Cobar Cat operating seven days a week meaning that a new owner could live in the apartment and commute to the city for work effortlessly,” he says.

“The Days Bay wharf is being fully upgraded and a local company is currently building what is believed to be the first fully-electric passenger ferry in the Southern Hemisphere with hopes that it will be operational for commuters and day trippers by mid-2020.”

The combined hospitality tenancies and apartment have a total floor area of 443sqm and there is 403sqm of land.

The Sea Salt restaurant tenancy is 235sqm with a substantial wraparound slightly-raised outdoor terrace seating area utilised for dining. The internal configuration incorporates a bar area and there is a full commercial kitchen to the rear of the tenancy.

Next door, with a separate entrance, is Cotti Mediterranean – a compact day-time café with 35sqm premises, including small commercial kitchen and modest outside dining area.

The upstairs apartment is an impressive 173sqm with west-facing open-plan living spaces opening to decks to capture grandstand views of the bay across to Wellington city and to catch the last of the day’s sun.

The apartment has polished timber floors, exposed feature ceiling beams, and an easy-living coastal feel. The residence is accessed via a private entrance to the rear of the restaurant.

There are 2 on-site car parks.

The commercial tenancies return a net income of approximately $116,000pa + GST. Both leases have an expiry date of December 2020, with 1 x 6-year rights of renewal able to be exercised.

Walker says Sea Salt has indicated that they would like to remain operating from the site.

The luxury waterfront residential apartment is currently occupied by the vendor, however Henderson says a market assessment puts the potential rental at $1,400-$1,600 per week – depending on the lease structure.

“A new owner could either enjoy the income off the ground floor businesses while residing upstairs, or lease out the residential component,” says Henderson.

“This could be via a fixed-term lease or as short-term accommodation, with both options bound to find traction in the Wellington market.

“With arguably the best sunsets in Wellington, this Days Bay apartment would be a popular rental offering.”

Days Bay is one of Wellington's most popular swimming beaches being a 15-minute drive from Lower Hutt, a 30-minute drive from the Wellington CBD and just a 20-minute catamaran ferry trip from Queens Wharf.

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