Rich Scoop Up Luxury Hellenikon Properties Before Construction | greece economy

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ATHENS – Even if you have very deep pockets and dream of living above the sea on the coast of Athens, you are running out of time to acquire a skyscraper or a luxury villa for the upcoming redevelopment of the abandoned site from Hellenikon International Airport.

The € 8 billion ($ 9.47 billion) project was supposed to be Europe’s largest urban park before an economic and austerity crisis spanning nearly a decade turned into a mix of luxury commercial and sports use for the wealthy.

This includes the rare opportunity to have a seaside village close to the center of the capital along the so-called Athenian Riviera which will link the renovations of the port of Piraeus by the Chinese company COSCO to Hellenikon, with the Foundation’s cultural center. Stavros Niarchos of $ 861 million. in the middle at the water’s edge.

Demand has been so strong that all of the project’s 45-story marina tower apartments as well as the 27 available beachfront villas will be sold by early next year, if not sooner, Odisseas Athanasiou , CEO of Lamda Development, the developer of the project, told Bloomberg Financial News.

The company has already secured more than 700 million euros ($ 828.85 million) in deposits with prices starting at 9,000 euros ($ 10,657) per square meter, with prices expected to reach 14,000 euros (16 $ 577) by 2025, the highest in Greece and comparable to New York, Shanghai and Geneva, Switzerland.

“This is huge, because we are talking about a value close to one billion euros ($ 1.18 billion)” once the property is delivered, Athanasiou said in an interview.

The first sales are a good sign for Greece’s biggest development project. Spanning an area three times the size of Monaco, the redevelopment of the disused Hellinikon airport could add up to 2.2% to the country’s economy and 80,000 jobs by 2025.

The project – now officially known as Ellinikon – is propelling Greece’s slow comeback from the economic crisis that was accelerating when the COVID-19 pandemic struck.

Development was also hampered for 4.5 years by the ruling former radical left SYRIZA which had a hard-core element that did not want foreign companies or investors in Greece, with the government helping to block the work.

It has been 20 years since the airport was closed after the opening of a new airport in the Spata region in the northeast of Athens, 27 kilometers (16.8 miles) from the center of the capital Athens.

Since then it has been stymied by economic decline and the country’s notoriously slow bureaucratic tangles and challenges from environmentalists who said weeds growing through the cracked cement make up a protected woodland area.

Lambda bought the land in 2014 and bought out two partners, Chinese Fosun and Abu Dhabi Eagle Hills, giving the Greek company that built the disputed Athens mall the exclusive rights for what could be a financial windfall. and further transform an area with the sea where private companies control public beaches.

THE GROUND FLOOR

“The multiplier effect from an investment point of view, from a tourism point of view and perception for the country is going to be huge,” Athanasiou told the news agency as clean-up work has already started. , but the final is not expected for a few years.

He said the developments, mainly commercial buildings, a marina for yachts, a casino and other properties, and a much smaller park than originally planned, will be powered by renewable resources, and sensors will regulate everything from lighting to garbage collection, according to the report. added.

Ellinikon will be one of the world’s first green and smart communities built from the ground up, according to Athanasiou.

The company described the project on the south coast of Athens as “a modern, green and digital city, a sustainable development model, respectful of people and the environment, which will showcase the cultural heritage of Greece – a new place of entertainment, relaxation, walking and exercise, accessible to all. “

The works will cover some 2 million square meters (21,572,820 square feet) and in addition to what will be called Metropolitan Park includes:

  • Sports facilities
  • A 72,000 square meter (775,000 square feet) shopping center
  • Offices and a hotel near the shopping center, near Vouliagmenis Av.
  • Galleria Shopping Center near Agios Kosmas Marina
  • Two hotels along the coast
  • Nearly 800 housing units (including individual houses and apartments)
  • A skyscraper for housing near Agios Kosmas Marina

The project will open 10,000 new jobs when it starts up and create a total of 70,000 jobs when it ends, across a wide range of economic and service activities, said the company, which, like others, has been affected by the pandemic limiting activity.

Lamda plans an initial public offering for its mall unit in 2022. The transaction is expected to generate cash in excess of 400 million euros ($ 473.55 million), Athanasiou said, adding that the company planned to gradually reduce its stake in malls to less than 45 percent from 88 percent now.

He said two shopping malls are planned as part of the airport redevelopment and they could also be sold by the mall unit, Athanasiou said.

Aided by the project, Lamda aims to triple its value by 2025, he said. Shares have risen 12% this year, valuing the company at 1.4 billion euros ($ 1.66 billion).

A billion euro ($ 1.18 billion) business park will be built, and Piraeus Bank has announced that it will relocate its headquarters in the project which is one of the most ambitious in Europe and which has seen property values ​​increase astronomically and attract more businesses to locate there.

“Greece will become a world class destination,” said Athanasiou. “Going from a simple, sunny seaside destination to an art of living”, if it is said, although it is possible there mainly for the wealthy, unrelated to building affordable units.

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