Perfectly positioned on Strathfield Golf Course, commanding spectacular 180 degree golf course views. Rise and shine, wake up to the magical tree lined fairways everyday…
Nearly 180 apartments in two eight-storey buildings overlooking an 18-hole golf course are about to hit the market, complete with luxurious interiors and resort-style amenities.
The project came about after Strathfield Golf Club found itself facing an uncertain financial future. Like many golf clubs, its core membership was getting older and its younger players were often too time-poor to regularly devote half a day – or more – to chasing a ball around a course.
Without the capital to improve its fairways or buildings, Strathfield Golf Club had two choices: amalgamate or sell some of its land. Neil Hardy, the club’s general manager, says the decision was made to sell.
“We still have 18 holes,” Hardy says. “It hasn’t affected the playability of the course. And with the proceeds of the sale, we have been able to build a new clubhouse, which will allow the club to compete in the market for functions as well as golf.”
It’s not just the fact that [green space is] beautiful to look at… It’s also private. It’s like living out in the open.Dennis Vertzayias, associate director of McGrath Projects
The existing course is undergoing a $6 million overhaul – an impossible feat without the land sale. “We’ll end up with a brilliant new clubhouse and a great new golf course,” Hardy says.
Around Sydney, many membership-based organisations are facing a similar dilemma; stagger towards financial oblivion or take action, either by joining forces with a more affluent club or by unlocking the value of their land. In some cases, the matter is complicated by the land being owned by local or state governments. Zoning restrictions add to the complexity.
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Bellevue Hill Bowling Club used to operate on property owned by Woollahra Council. Developer Parker Logan Property bought the land and is building The Acre, a boutique complex development next to Cooper Park.
A few months ago, Wharf Residences in Manly launched. Newcrest Property partnered with Manly Civic Club to redevelop the site, which will incorporate a new club and restaurant. Kogarah RSL is getting a new lease of life with Veridian, an apartment development from Capital Bluestone.
The Greens is the second stage of properties released as part of the Strathfield project. Fairway Residences, the initial stage, comprises 50 attached homes, more than 40 of which have already sold for an average price just shy of $2 million. The remaining attached homes are on the market for between $1.7 million and $2.2 million.
The 178 apartments that make up The Greens are almost evenly split between the two buildings. Most enjoy a northern aspect, taking advantage of the natural light and golf course views. Some ground-floor residences have spacious entertainer’s courtyards on the edge of the course.
“I’ve been selling for 30 years in Sydney and I can tell you, in terms of aspect and views, the first and best is the harbour and ocean, followed by some form of green space, like Centennial Park or a golf course,” Vertzayias says.
“It’s not just the fact it’s beautiful to look at, with the greenery and the fresh air; it’s also private. It’s like living out in the open.”
Facade finishes on the buildings include silver-grey metal, rendered surfaces in warm greys, planters overflowing with lush greenery and large spans of full-height glass to showcase the views. The interiors embrace a high-end European aesthetic, featuring Calacatta stone benchtops and a choice of a light or dark colour palette.
Dennis Vertzayias says the project is modelled on the idea of a five-star hotel, with a cafe on the ground floor, as well as a fitness centre with a yoga room, basketball court, tennis court and indoor heated lap pool.
“Residents can enjoy a round of golf on their doorstep followed by a nice meal and a glass of wine at the new clubhouse nearby,” Vertzayias says.
If the Fairway Residences are any indication, most buyers won’t even be keen golfers but owner-occupiers who want to live in tranquil surroundings with easy access to high-end amenities in a suburb rich with history.
A daily free bus service to and from Strathfield train station, five kilometres away, is planned for peak periods. There’s a bus stop about 350 metres away, with services to Strathfield town centre. The WestConnex, slated to open around the same time as the residents move in, is expected to cut travel time to the city to less than 20 minutes.
“It’s a green initiative as well as a huge convenience for residents. They can grab a coffee and head straight to the train station, without having to muck around with parking,” Vertzayias says. “You literally don’t need a car.”
With a clutch of highly regarded schools in the area, the apartments are expected to prove popular among young families, young professionals and local downsizers.
“These apartments represent really good value, especially when you consider the average price for units the same distance from the city in places like Olympic Park,” Vertzayias says. “People are paying $1 million for a one or two-bedder overlooking the Parramatta River, and they’re so dense, so built-up. At The Greens, people are getting good value and high-end amenity.”
The NSW chief executive of developer lobby group the Urban Development Institute of Australia, Steve Mann, predicts the golf course home trend could be here to stay, with so many courses occupying vast swathes of land in sought-after suburbs near the city.
“As the population grows and the affordability crisis worsens, the state and local governments will be under increased pressure to develop government-owned golf course land for housing and schools, or convert them to fields for other sports,” Mann says.
At Strathfield Golf Club, general manager Neil Hardy agrees: “I think it’s the only way for some golf clubs to survive. They won’t survive purely on the income from golf.”