Plans for a $100-million luxury apartment development on the grounds of a 19th century convent at Rippleside have been lodged with the City of Greater Geelong Council.

The Costa Fox project would restore and retain the 1848 Stella Maris Mansion on the 1.2ha site and add a further four three-storey buildings.

Costa Fox managing director Michael Fox said the Geelong market was “hot” as more Victorians moved to regional areas.

Fox said there would be a mix of 50 Rothelowman designed-townhouses and apartments across four low-rise, three-storey buildings in a “cracking location”, some of which will be under $1 million.

“The development is just something really different for Geelong, there’s nothing like this in terms of size or location,” Fox said.

“It’s pretty much out of the box and I think it’s going to be our best project.

“Our premium product will be around $4.5 million for a 300sq m apartment on the water.”

Costa Fox acquired the heritage-listed Italianate mansion and former Sisters of Mercy convent in February for $11.3 million.

“We want to restore the mansion … the mansion will be retained as a mansion, the apartments will surround it [on the 1.2ha block],” Fox said.

“Because of its 1848 heritage it has to retain its bay views.”

Fox said they were still deliberating whether to retain the mansion once it had been restored or sell it.

Fox said he was hopeful they would win approval from the City of Greater Geelong Council this year, and launch to market early next year, with a construction commencement date hedged for late 2022.

“We have assembled an amazing team to bring this project to life and includes Architecture by Rothelowman, Landscape by Acre and Town Planning by Urbis,” he said.

“Landscaping is a feature of the redevelopment of the site with over 6,000sq m of gardens ... some of which will be publicly accessible.”

image1 image1