Developers bat their eyelids at Madame Lash’s iconic Surry Hills party house

16 November 2022

Leading Australian-owned and operated property developer TOGA Group has acquired Surry Hills icon, ‘The Kirk’, for $6 million, as demand for City Fringe assets intensifies despite headwinds affecting commercial transaction sales.

Situated in the flourishing Surry Hills precinct, The Kirk sits opposite TOGA’s $400 million Surry Hills Village development. Designed by TOGA, together with award-winning SJB Architects, the construction of the luxury residential and retail precinct is well under way and is expected to complete in 2024.

JLL’s Dylan McEvoy, Willem Watson and Gordon McFadyen exclusively brokered the transaction for 422-424 Cleveland Street, Surry Hills, achieving a land rate of $10,381 per sqm.

Mr McEvoy said, “Surry Hills, and the wider City Fringe precinct is undergoing a huge transformation, thanks to a number of major infrastructure investments. The precinct benefits greatly from increased connectivity from the Sydney CBD Light Rail, and the $3 billion Tech Central precinct development will be Australia’s largest ever urban regeneration precinct greater in scale than Barangaroo.

“Surrounded by several economic drivers, it’s the confluence of art, culture and history that makes this precinct one of Sydney’s liveliest quarters.

Mr McFadyen said, “The Kirk is a very unique building, and as such, received a very strong reception, garnering 161 enquiries and 42 bids. This included groups considering the site for creative office, boutique hotel groups, owner occupiers and mixed-use. The Kirk’s significance in the social fabric of Surry Hills made this a truly rare offering.”

Constructed in 1880, The Kirk initially functioned as a place of worship, before becoming a community centre, concert venue and exhibition space. The property has high cultural significance for its historic and social origins as an arts venue and creative space.

The 557 sqm freehold landholding served as a concert venue for rock bands in the 70s and 80s. AC/DC filmed its video for the song Let There Be Rock inside The Kirk in 1977. It was acquired by Sydney socialite Madame Lash in 1986.

Paul Shaw, Executive General Manager – Development for TOGA Group said, “We are thrilled to have been successful in acquiring The Kirk – an iconic piece of Sydney’s cultural history. Situated directly opposite TOGA’s hotly anticipated Surry Hills Village development, we see The Kirk as complementary to our vision for Surry Hills Village. We look forward to sharing our plans for transforming the site to incorporate office and events space, as well as adding retail space to the adjacent laneway.”

Also located in the City Fringe, JLL’s Gordon McFadyen & Dylan McEvoy recently transacted a block of apartments + retail located 187 Bourke Street, Darlinghurst, for $6.1 million reflecting a 3.27% net return.   

JLL’s Willem Watson brokered the transaction for 213 Oxford Street, Darlinghurst for $2.4 million, achieving a land rate of 2.59 net return.