LONDON — Property investors Meyer Bergman and Thor Equities on Monday revealed plans to sell London’s 19th-century shopping thoroughfare Burlington Arcade.
The 37,000-square-foot covered arcade — located next to the Royal Academy — runs between Piccadilly and Burlington Gardens, alongside Old Bond Street and houses a lineup of luxury names including Ladurée, Vilebrequin, Harry’s of London, The Vintage Rolex Watch Co., Lulu Guinness, Church’s and Maison Michel.
The company has enlisted property adviser CBRE to sell the shopping area, which was the Cavendish family’s former London home. CBRE’s head of U.K. Retail Phil Cann will be working with Toby Cooper of Thor Equities and Eric van Duren of Meyer Bergman on the sale. According to the property adviser, investors acquired 2.3 billion pounds, or $2.7 billion, of Central London retail property in 2016 with Oxford Street and Bond Street accounting for almost three-quarters of the total. The firm noted that international buyers accounted for 80 percent of volume which rose from 65 percent in 2015 and 2014.
“Burlington Arcade is known worldwide and we expect the sale to attract strong interest from investors in the U.K. and around the globe,” said Cann. “Our clients have been great custodians of this highly sought after retail destination over the past six years and this sale presents an extremely rare opportunity to acquire a unique part of London’s heritage.
“Furthermore, the weakening of the pound and favorable exchange rates fueling tourist spending means prime London retail is a very attractive prospect to foreign buyers,” he added. “London remains the number one gateway city to Europe for retailers and investors alike, and this is set to continue.”
Opened in 1819, the arcade became known as a luxury shopping destination that contained independent retailers selling gemstones, vintage watches, footwear and leather and cashmere accessories. In 2010, Thor Equities and Meyer Bergman repositioned the arcade and tenant area to include global luxury brands. The shopping area, which reopened in 2015, has seen a host of designers take up residence including Chanel, Manolo Blahnik, Frederic Malle, La Perla, and perfume house Atkinsons. It underwent a 10 million-pound, or $12 million, refurbishment and saw a redesign under British architect Jamie Fobert.
The company said that the co-owners have launched a marketing campaign in order to welcome investors — in particular from the Middle East and Far East.
“The Burlington Arcade is a historical and architectural masterpiece, and one of the most renowned retail destinations in the world,” said Joseph Sitt, chief executive officer of Thor Equities. “With its magnificent redesign and new luxury tenants, the property will remain a treasured London destination for generations to come.”