RE Capital, the pan-European investment, development and asset management company, has secured three lettings at 1 Old Queen Street, St James’s Park SW1, a 20,000 sq ft office building situated opposite Westminster Abbey.
The top two floors, which have been fitted with a plug and play specification, have been let to a private equity manager at a rent equating to £95 per sq ft, a new record for the Westminster sub-market. The fourth and third floors have been completed to a conventional CAT A specification and have been let at rents of £86.50 per sq ft and £85 per sq ft respectively, both on 10 year leases with 5 year tenant only breaks. The first floor is also under-offer.
RE Capital, advised by Gerald Eve, acquired the building during the first lockdown for £24m, making it one of the only office investment transactions in Q3 2020, and have since invested £4m in a large-scale refurbishment and repositioning project. This included securing planning consent for a communal roof terrace over-looking Westminster Abbey, a private courtyard, the installation of generous end of journey facilities and high-quality materials throughout the building.
Chris Wright, Senior Asset Manager at RE Capital commented: The immediate and overwhelmingly positive response from the market is evidence of the current desire for best in category office buildings in core locations. Securing these lettings and reaching over 50% occupancy so soon after completion, with a further floor under-offer is testament to the design and quality of the finished product.
Simon Banks, Head of UK at RE Capital commented: We are extremely pleased with the leasing momentum and record rents secured to date. Our unwavering belief in the Central London office market, even during the extreme economic uncertainty of the first UK lockdown, is now starting to pay dividends and our conviction in the future of the office is as strong now as it was then.
Savills and Katten Muchin Rosenman UK LLP are acting for RE Capital. Adams Burnett, Expedite Group and Glinsman Weller represented the tenants.