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alternative Assets News: Spanish Real Estate Intelligence

The cities attracting investments. Florence surpassed Rome and is just behind Milan
22 February, Il Sole 24 Ore Florence, the cradle of the Renaissance culture which will never go out of fashion, surpassed Rome in terms of investment attractivity placing just after Milan. The results come from Nomisma, which gathered the data in Italy2Invest-Urban Data Intelligence, its integrated platform measuring the attractivity, competitivity and wellbeing of the Italian market in order to support investors and policymakers. A novelty worth to see in detail. The Italy2Invest indicator The general index generated from the analysis of the data included in the Nomisma platform shows a score from 0 to 100 placing Milan first with a rating of 75.2. Florence ranks second with a score of 71.4, followed by Bologna and Turin. Rome is only fifth with a score of 63.5. The city ranks 22nd in the Municipality chart, where Milan and Florence are again respectively first and second. The promoters of the Capital in terms of investment attractivity will undoubtedly disagree with this chart. To give a more precise idea, we must clarify that the general index includes 250 indicators referring to 7,998 Italian cities. The 2018 overview shows a total average score of the various towns equal to 52.7 for 2018, 60.8 for the provincial capitals only and 63.4 for metropolitan cities. The average incorporates a minimum value, referred to all the cites, equal to 28.8, and a maximum value of 75.2, referred to Milan. Among the provincial capitals, Rome ranks 17th, surpassed by cities such as Como, Pavia, Monza and Padova. Florence’s appeal The Nomisma general index is based on the identification of eight main “domains”, 601 indicators and 22 information resources, both public and private. Florence not only ranked second but also reported the highest performance, with a positive spread of 17.4 points in comparison with the average of provincial capitals and of 12.6 points compared to the average of metropolitan cities. Three “domains” contributed to such high score: tourism, real estate market and services, and consumptions. Florence’s touristic sector scored 100, while real estate scored 90. The main four parameters measuring Florence’s excellent ranking in tourism are the number of business for Sq km, the total tourists’ arrivals for Sq km, the impact of international tourism and the utilisation rate. Visits in Florence were 3,826,699 in 2017 (this is the period analysed by Nomisma), reporting a 6.6% growth from 2016; presences were 10,056,157 (+7.74%), and the average duration of stays was 2,63 nights. The property market Concerning this domain, Nomisma took into consideration the prices of shops and the intensity index of the real estate market. Specifically, the weighted average price of shops in Florence in the second quarter of 2018 was 2,766 euro/Sq m, against the 2,361 euro/Sq m of houses and the 2,136 euro/Sq m of offices. The weighted average rents were 182 euro/Sq m/year for shops (the numbers refer to the second quarter of 2018), 118 euro/Sq m/year for houses and 105 euro/Sq m/year for offices. For what concerns services, the Nomisma indicator considers the number of nursing homes and hospitals in relation to the population, the Municipality’s expenditure concerning support to families and children and the Municipality’s expenditure concerning social protection and support to homeless people. Florence places very high in the chart for this indicator. For instance, nursing homes and hospitals per Sq km are equal to 0.74 in comparison with the average of 0.41 of metropolitan cities and 0.32 of provincial capitals. A new prospect The general index Italy2Invest offers a new outlook to assess the attractivity of Italian regions, and it breaks with the tradition of the Milan-Rome axis generally used when talking about real estate deals, introducing investors to a new point of view. Large players may disagree, but it’s important to stress that cities like Florence are currently the object of important deals such as the acquisition of the Four Season's hotel. Not only, the city is also undergoing important requalification interventions, as well as important real estate developments. Big requalification projects in Florence Hotels, luxury residences, shopping centres and offices are the main requalification opportunities in Florence, where the urban renewal process started in 2015. According to the City of Florence and the Region of Tuscany, the potential investments are assessed at around 1.5 billion euro, for requalification projects covering a total surface of 800 thousand Sq m. Among the most interesting projects, there are Villa Mondeggi, the Sant'Orsola monastery, the Lupi di Toscana barracks, Officine Grandi Riparazioni (“the repair workshop”) and the former military hospital San Gallo. Villa Mondeggi An agricultural and historical property just outside Florence, in Bagno a Ripoli, it offers breath-taking views for a total surface of 170 hectares, 46 olive groves, 22 vineyards, and 34 wooded areas. The main villa covers 6 thousand Sq m, while farms occupy other 3 thousand Sq m. The construction dates back to the 15th century. As decided by the city administration, the property’s use intended is mixed, from hospitality to residential and agricultural production. The asset was put on auction at the end of last year. The public auction will take place on 1st March at 7 pm. Sant’Orsola monastery This requalification project concerns a 5,356 Sq m area extendable to 17,500 Sq m. The area dates back to the 16th century. The total investments for touristic use amount to 35 million euro. The property is located in the heart of the old town, close to the Medici Chapel, the Cathedral and the San Lorenzo market. The area has been completely neglected. It will become a multifunctional centre which will also host the Bocelli Academy Music School along with a guesthouse and a 17 thousand Sq m public square. The proposal for the site’s requalification arrived at the beginning of February, and it’s currently being assessed by the city administration. Lupi di Toscana barracks Its intended use will be disclosed in detail based on the offers and the ideas which will be submitted. The site concerns an area of 34 thousand Sq m, with the addition of approximately other 20 thousand Sq m, for a total surface of 53 thousand Sq m to be requalified and investments for about 100 million euro. The site benefits from excellent connections thanks to the tramway line nearby. It’s already certain that the project will include a residential component, comprising social housing dedicated to young people and mixed-use assets. In January, the relaunch process of the barracks was accelerated, as announced by City Councillor for urban planning Giovanni Bettarini, after having met with the experts and the winners of the bid. “We’ve chosen to bring forward at the same time the recovery plan and the related variant to the planning regulations – said Bettarini – in order to accelerate with the schedule and to recover quickly such a precious metropolitan area. In April, the urban planning commission will check the status of the project before preparing the final documents, so that we’ll be able to make the last amendments based on the requests and remarks”. Officine Grandi Riparazioni The potential investment amounts to 16.5 million euro concerning an area of 82 thousand Sq m, 54 thousand of which will be requalified. The complex is located in the Porta al Prato area, which is currently vacant, near Teatro dell’Opera designed by the architect Paolo Desideri and the Leopolda station, not far from the city centre. The asset has a mixed intended use including hotels and residences, commercial spaces and services. Old San Gallo hospital The buildable area covers 16,200 Sq m. The property was built between 1100 and 1700. The potential investment amounts to 45 million euro. This asset is located in the old town, which is a Unesco heritage site.  The project implies the mix of functions such as hotels, residences and public spaces. As shown in the preliminary masterplan, there will be hotel suites and luxury apartments overlooking the San Marco Dome. There are also plans to implement a bus terminal close by for a surface of over 11,800 Sq m, whose intended use can’t be modified, but for which the bus company Ataf is ready to pay a yearly rent of 3.1 million euro. Source: Il Sole 24 Ore Translator: Cristina Ambrosi
Real estate: Hines targeted San Siro. The US funds are competing for Milan
16 February, Il Sole 24 Ore Hines targeted San Siro. The company is ready to launch a requalification project potentially worth 400 million euro. Nowadays, big investors operating on the Italian real estate market are increasingly focused on urban requalification and development projects. This has concerned only selected cities so far, with Milan leading the chart. The city is experiencing the relaunch of the Italian real estate sector. Prices for residential properties have been rising since 2013. Milan is changing quickly. After having welcomed the arrival of big projects such as CityLife and Porta Nuova, the city sees the start of new requalification projects while it’s waiting for the final approval of future ones. In Milanosesto, Hines and Prelios are competing for managing and coordinating the real estate development covering 1.4 million Sq m. In Santa Giulia, Risanamento and the Australian LendLease are waiting for the green light from the City of Milan to start building houses in the site. Finally, the Arena might host the winter Olympics if Milan with Cortina will be the winners of the bid. There are many other projects in the pipeline — for instance, the acquisition by the American Hines of the Snai area in San Siro. The site includes the former racecourses, covering a 45 thousand Sq m area located near the stadium. According to the rumours, there is already an agreement, and the transfer of ownership from Snaitech to Hines might be completed in the first half of 2019. The former racecourses will accommodate auxiliary services to the stadium, from shops to a museum, football clubs and restaurants, along with residences and senior living in the southern part close to the metro station. The Inter and Milan football clubs will have to decide whether to tear down the existing stadium and build a new one in the current place of the parking lot or whether to renovate the existing one. The clubs both sent letters to the City administration demanding more space in the area. Hines and the City of Milan are still deciding the intended use of the site, which will determine its value. The whole operation might be worth 300-400 million. Requalification projects concern 3 million Sq m in total in Milan, also considering the former rail yards, in a five-year horizon. Meanwhile, large investors continue with their shopping. Ubs has recently acquired La Forgiatura, an integrated campus for a surface of 30 thousand Sq m which will undergo a requalification project with a focus on energy efficiency located the Certosa area. The site has seen the recovery of approximately 15 thousand Sq m, in addition to the 10 thousand Sq m dedicated to new construction. The Traversi garage, right behind San Babila, has changed ownership, following the sale by a fund of Bnp Paribas Real Estate to Invesco for approximately 100 million. The property has been vacant for over a decade, having changed owner several times, from Aedes to Risanamento, and finally Banco Popolare. Gva Redilco has been appointed for marketing its spaces, starting from the temporary stores. Coima and Ardian are competing for obtaining the former Boeringer headquarter near Porta Romana. The project concerning the homonym rail yard will radically change the area. Its requalification had already started with the arrival of the Prada Foundation and Symbiosis. Finally, there is a great expectation for the building property of the City of Milan in Via Pirelli 39 overlooking the Melchiorre Gioia bridge. The auction is scheduled for the 29th of March. The starting price is 87.5 million plus 18 million for the annexed parking lot. All the primary players of the sector will take part to get the last piece of Porta Nuova left on the market. Source: Il Sole 24 Ore Translator: Cristina Ambrosi
The 2019 real estate outlook by Cbre
15 February, Mark Up In 2019 hotels will be one of the most interesting asset classes concerning the capacity to attract investments, according to the Investor Intentions report by Cbre. In 2018, hotels in Italy drew total investments for 1.321 billion net, continuing the trend of 2017, and they’re expected to grow further this year reaching approximately 2 billion euro. With 277, 000 bookings in a year, 33,000 hotels and 1.1 million rooms, Italy is the fourth market after the United States, France and Spain. International investors, generally representing the predominant quota of real estate investments in Italy, were 65% of the total investments in 2018, having decreased from the 76% recorded in 2017. Investors are particularly attracted by luxury hotels in the main tourist destinations, especially Milan, Rome, Florence and Venice. Several international companies have recently made their debut on the Italian market. In Milan, the Singaporean First Sponsor Group acquired Grand Hotel Puccini. In 2018, Swiss Life completed its first acquisition in Italy with Radisson Blu, always in Milan, and Novotel Malpensa. For 2019, the main challenges of real estate acquisitions in Italy will still be asset availability (21% in 2019, aligned with 2017 and slightly decreasing from 2018 with 25%), cost of properties (15% in 2019, increasing from 2017 but aligned with 2018 which reported 16%), political instability (14% in 2019, decreasing in comparison with 2017 which recorded 15% but having sharply increased from 2018 with 8%). A stable year “Unless destabilising geopolitical events in 2019, we expect a steady year or even better than 2018”, commented Cbre Italy Ceo Alessandro Mazzanti. It will be, however, well below the results reported in 2017. The key sectors will be logistics and hotels. Retail will not register a significant growth, and it will require a careful selection. It will be necessary, in fact, to hunt for opportunities as prices have decreased. In 2018, the segment, in continuity with the 2017 trend, performed better than other European markets where the contraction was more dramatic since the stock was bigger. We’re currently in the middle of an evolution: bigger assets are benefitting from the rise of e-commerce, while shopping centres can be a good place where to experiment with different formats”. Retail and logistics: the most resilient segments Retail is the real estate asset class that reacted the best to the 2018 market contraction, with investments equal to 2.243 billion euro, decreasing by 6% from 2017. In 2019, we might see the completion of some critical operations concerning factory outlets, as the segment risks to be severely impacted by the law on Sunday closures. 18.43% of the people surveyed see logistic as the most interesting asset class of commercial real estate in terms of investments in the pipeline for 2019. Despite the segment has slightly reduced from 2017, in 2018 logistics doubled its transacted volumes, net of the Logicor transaction. Investments have gone from 5% as recorded ten years ago to 10% in the current economic cycle. The growth of e-commerce has positively influenced the performance of the entire sector, and it’s expected to grow further in 2019. Student housing was one of the most dynamic sectors in 2018 in Italy. According to 32% of the people surveyed by Cbre, it will be the residential segment with the biggest potential, followed by senior housing (25.2%) and luxury houses (15%). 68.8% of the interviewed believes that student housing might become the leading asset class of Italian real estate. For what concerns offices, the trends regarding serviced offices and co-working will consolidate in 2019, after the entrance in 2018 of new players. Requalification will be crucial for Milan and Rome. Milan has started with a rush, with the launch of some requalification and expansion projects already at the beginning of 2019. Meanwhile, Rome has a number of projects in the pipeline, and the demand is in excellent shape. The healthcare sector has gone from 6% to 8%. The low birth rate combined with the longer life expectancy has brought to the progressive ageing of the population. In 2017, Italy had the highest old-age dependency ratio in Europe (34.8%) according to Eurostat, resulting in one of the most attractive countries for investors in the healthcare sector. 14% of the interviewed said to be interested in the NPL sector, placing bad loans second in order of interest, followed by offices and student housing with equal merits. Source: Mark Up Translator: Cristina Ambrosi