Historic bank building for sale
One of the first commercial buildings in Hastings to be rebuilt after the 1931 Hawke’s Bay earthquake is up for sale.
The two-storey building, on the corner of Heretaunga St West and Market St, was once the town’s Bank of New South Wales branch, which became Westpac.
The bank has been operating from the site since 1884, though it had a second incarnation after 1894 when a fire destroyed most of Hastings’ central business district.
When the Hawke’s Bay earthquake struck in 1931, all the city’s banks were destroyed, apart from the wooden-built Bank of New South Wales which suffered only minor damage.
However, the bank’s Australian owners decided to that in keeping with other banking institutions having their premises rebuilt after the shake, the New South Wales branch should follow suit.
Wellington architecture firm Crichton, McKay and Haughton was commissioned to design the new building, which opened in 1936. Over the decades, numerous alterations were made, with internal upgrades and refurbishments undertaken.
Westpac occupied the premises until the late 1980s, when the bank relocated to another building in nearby Queen St East.
Since then, ground floor tenancies in the building have included a butcher, bar, a post shop, restaurants and clothing stores.
On the upper level, there is a 279 square metre luxury, art deco apartment.
Bayleys salesman Simon Davies said the property was zoned for commercial use, with allowance for a residential dwelling upstairs.
Davies said AMI was on a sixyear lease in the premises running through until 2023, generating a net rental of $60,000 a year, with two further three-year rights of renewal. The 590sqm property has a new build standards rating of 67 percent.
‘‘The creation of the upstairs residence provides the opportunities for either an owner/occupier to purchase what is the most stylish apartment home in Hastings’ central business district, with a revenueproducing tenancy downstairs, or for an investor to secure two totally separate income streams from one property,’’ he said.
‘‘The building’s style is classified as ‘stripped classical’, with little ornamentation.’’
From an investment perspective, the apartment could be let as short-term tourist accommodation, Davies said.
Bayleys agent Paul Garland said the ‘‘trophy’’ building retained a high level of art deco authenticity and sat on 356sqm of land.
Heretaunga St West is Hastings’ main retail street, stretching more than 2 kilometres and home to a variety of food and beverage outlets, clothing retailers, household goods and services purveyors, and small professional services firms.
The former Westpac building on the corner of Heretaunga St West and Market St in Hastings is on the market.
On the upper level, there is a 279-squaremetre luxury art deco apartment.