2 offices in Burns Philp Building for sale

by AF

Burns Philp Building, Sydney CBD
$465,000 & $2.1 million

Burns Philp was a shipping, retailing and insurance company that grew into one of Australia’s leading corporations until its delisting in 2006. In the late 1800s, James Burn, on behalf of Burns Philp and Co., Ltd. purchased this site in Bridge Street for 20 pounds from a Mr. McDonald. The older shops and offices on the site were torn down to make way for the Burns Philp head office which was completed in 1901 at a cost of 60,000 pounds (approximately $8 million in today’s terms). It was designed by Arthur Anderson of A.L. & G. McCredie & Anderson, with later additions by John Brogan & Associates. Anderson later went on to found the Australian Institute of Architects in 1930. The architectural style is said to be Federation, Romanesque/Late Victorian, Gothic and Neo-Romanesque with Scottish Baronial gables. The stone facade is made from Pyrmont ‘Purgatory’ Sandstone.

The Burns Philp Building (right)  – City of Sydney Library

Burns Philp Building – City of Sydney Library

One of the additions included extended western side of the building overtop of Bridge Lane, which passes on the western and southern sides of the building. This feature is a rare early example of a building in the city that was allowed to incorporate and build over a laneway.

As with many buildings in this street, a large proportion of tenants were involved in shipping, importing and mining. The German Consulate General and his staff were even tenants at one stage. At first, Burns Philp only occupied part of the building, but as their business expanded they became the sold occupant by 1919.

1931 – State Library of NSW

The building was listed under the New South Wales Heritage Act in 1989 and is also listed on the Register of the National Estate. It was carefully renovated in the 1980s and  sold in 1991 for $17.75 million. Since then it has been turned into strata offices, each with individual owners. Because of the heritage listing, it is difficult to alter the original layout of the offices.

The interior features of the building remain largely intact, with decorative painted metal ceilings, cast iron columns, cedar joinery and a polished stone foyer. The decorative iron panel in the lobby is a reproduction.

Offices for sale

No. 4 @ $2,100,000 + GST
Size: 330 sqm ($6,363/sqm)
This is a tenanted office. The gross income is $198,198 a year (including GST), which provides a gross annual return of 9.44%. The outgoings (including strata levies, rates and water) are estimated at $35,200 a year, which brings the net return to approximately 7.76%.
It was purchased in 2009 for $1.65 million.
View listing.

No. 11 @ $465,000 + GST
Size: 70 sqm ($6,642/sqm)
This is a tenanted office. The gross income is $45,500 a year, which provides a gross annual return of 9.78%. The outgoings were estimated at a relatively low $7,000 a year, which brings the net return to approximately 8.28%.
View listing.

The average rent for an office in this building ranges from $650 ~ $715 per square meter per year.


5-11 Bridge Street, Sydney, Australia

Listing information and images from Realcommercial.com.au

NSW Government Environment & Heritage