Markets To Watch
Sydney, Australia — Industrial developers found 4Q08 difficult due to a lack of financing and a slowdown in tenant demand, according to Cushman & Wakefield. But despite very little rent growth, Sydney’s submarkets experienced several sales. A vacant industrial land parcel in Maldon sold at auction for $1.55 million AUD ($1 million USD) while two industrial warehouses in Moorbank sold for a total of $3 million AUD ($1.9 million USD).
Hong Kong — Office sector asking rents fell in 4Q08 because of a big demand retreat, reports Colliers International. Prime office rentals also fell to 13.4 percent. Vacancy rates rose to 7.0 percent in 4Q08 due to the completion of several class A office developments in Kowloon East. Hong Kong’s office market is predicted to experience more downward adjustments this year. Office rentals are expected to drop an additional 26 percent over the next few months.
Paris — France’s overall retail sales went down by only 2 percent in 4Q08 despite the falling inflation rate, according to Cushman & Wakefield. Demand from luxury brands in Paris remained steady with the focus still on traditionally high-end areas such as Avenue Montaigne, Faubourg Saint-Honoré, and Rue Saint-Honoré. While several mass market brands scaled back expansion plans in 4Q08, they also focused on prime locations. By year-end 2008, shopping center and high-end street rental rates remained stable at $998 psf per year.
Spain Boasts Boutique Hotels
Because of a strong design culture and growing tourism industry, Spain hosts some of the best boutique hotels in Europe, reports Budget Travel. Snapping up 19th-century homes, several entrepreneurs converted these residential properties to stylish hotels with affordable prices. The Xino Hotel in Barcelona costs about $110 per night and includes private baths and a rooftop terrace. The Room Mate Alicia in Madrid runs about $157 per night and is near several major museums.
Dubai’s Center Seeks LEED Status
Mirdirf City Center, the Middle East’s first eco-friendly retail center, located on Dubai’s eastern growth corridor, is slated to open this year. The 230,000-square-meter center will have 430 retail outlets, including eight anchor stores. In addition, developers are seeking Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design Gold certification for the project.
Top Five International Markets for U.S. Investment
These markets are among the top international cities that U.S. investors find the most appealing.
5. Osaka, Japan
Source: CPN-Nielsen 2008 Index
Latin America Hospitality Construction Update
Projects/ Rooms 1Q08
Projects/ Rooms Change from
1Q08 to 4Q08 (%)
Source: Lodging Econometrics