After a troubled recent history, Dunk Island back on the market

Just over a year after controversial investment group Mayfair 101 bought Queensland’s Dunk Island for $31.5 million, only to have it repossessed, it’s up for sale again.

Nov 12, 2020, updated Nov 12, 2020
Dunk Island may have finally found a new owner. (Photo ABC)

Dunk Island may have finally found a new owner. (Photo ABC)

Far north Queensland’s Dunk Island is back on the market for a reduced price after its sale last year to Mayfair 101 fell through.

The investment group bought the island and cyclone-damaged resort for $31.5 million from the family of Linc Energy founder Peter Bond.

It had planned a billion-dollar redevelopment of the island and nearby Mission Beach, but the island was repossessed in August over failure to meet payment terms.

JLL Hotels and Hospitality Group has been appointed to sell the island, which includes 135 hectares of freehold developable land, the disused resort, a mainland power connection, and airstrip.

“We’re taking it to market with the idea that someone could buy it and develop it back into its former glory as an all-encompassing holiday destination, pretty much like the enormously successful Hamilton Island,” investment sales associate Nick Roche said.

“We contracted to sell it last year for $31.5 million, and unfortunately that fell through so, we’re expecting pricing to be in the $20 millions this time.”

Mayfair 101 has been embroiled in legal troubles this year.

The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) commenced court action against the investment group in April for alleged misleading or deceptive advertising.

Mayfair’s M101 Nominees was placed in provisional liquidation in August and another entity, IPO Wealth Holdings, was ordered to wind up in September.

Mayfair founder James Mawhinney has been restrained from raising funds through financial products or leaving the country.

The group also bought about 200 Mission Beach properties but suspended settlements citing COVID-19 impacts.

Roche said the controversy surrounding Mayfair 101 should not affect the sale of Dunk Island.

“Mayfair have obviously had some trouble but it’s a mortgagee in possession and it’s not really relevant to the selling of the island now,” he said.

He said there was still significant potential to develop the island into Australia’s next tourism icon despite the pandemic’s impact on tourism.

“Australians usually spend about $65 billion overseas every year, and with travel restrictions we’ll be spending that at home,” he said.

“We think it’s going to be a good thing for the Great Barrier Reef accommodation market.”


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