QUEST Serviced Apartments has launched a new dedicated business division, Quest Properties, to bolster its expansion plans.
The company aims to increase the number of Australians directly investing in the properties it manages, to make it easier to attract developers to build new sites.
Chairman Paul Constantinou said Quest needed property developers who were prepared to build its properties.
”In turn, they need investors who will purchase the end product,” he said. ”The establishment of Quest Properties will enable this to occur more effectively.”
Under present arrangements, investors collectively own more than 5000 individual Quest apartments. These have been sourced through real estate agents, financial planners and developers.
”It has been unstructured and very disparate,” Mr Constantinou said.
”This has led to a lot of confusion about the nature of serviced apartment investments and how our own Quest product fits in.”
Mr Constantinou said Quest Properties would provide investors with a single point of contact for all their queries, and a trusted source of information about the Quest investment product and serviced apartment industry.
A CBRE Hotels report found that Quest, established in Melbourne in the 1980s, is now the largest and fastest-growing serviced apartment operator in Australia. It has more than 100 establishments in Australia, and more than 130 overseas.
Serviced apartments have tapped into travellers’ and business people’s desire for independence.
The sector has carved out a big share of the travel market in the past 25 years – about 24 per cent of supply, according to the Bureau of Statistics.
The serviced apartment has in-room cooking, washing, working and living space that is not offered in a lot of other accommodation. Unlike hotels, there is minimal food and beverages, giving the customer flexibility and saving the operator having to run such a marginal revenue stream.