WA  rich shake up top-end market
Hot property: The 2470ha Devereaux Farm in Bullsbrook. Picture: Supplied

Some of WA's movers and shakers have moved homes and shaken the property market, injecting a renewed vigour into the luxury real estate sector.

It would appear that Perth's top property is in a slow recovery, with the dozen homes which are believed to have fetched the highest prices over the past 15 months worth a combined $115 million.

And it has not come without its share of drama, intrigue and colourful characters.

The highest-selling property was 2470ha Devereaux Farm in Bullsbrook, which went for a steal at $21.3 million after a discount of about $50 million on the original listing price.

It was sold by embattled coal baron Ric Stowe to Luke Herbert, the 36-year-old owner of Linkforce Engineering.

The second and third highest- selling properties have pitted two WA property developers - Nigel Satterley and Marcus Plunkett - at odds with each over.

Mr Satterley paid $17.5 million for the historic Peppermint Grove mansion Chiritta at 56 The Esplanade in May last year from Ann and Denis Cullity, who founded Channel 9 in Perth.

Next door at number 58, Mr Plunkett wants to bulldoze the existing home he bought for $9 million last year and build a new two-storey home.

But the council recently rejected his application, agreeing with Mr Satterley that the design was not sympathetic to its surroundings.

Mr Plunkett is appealing against the decision through the State Administrative Tribunal. But it was an exchange in Mosman Park last month that has posed a $64 million question: which Perth couple own neighbouring mansions?

The answer is Tia and husband Chris Ellison, a mining magnate who set an Australian price record in December 2009 with the $57.5 million purchase of Angela Bennett's property at 43 Saunders Drive, Mosman Park. The pair last month added to the purchase by buying the house next door. Mrs Ellison paid $6.625 million for the four-bedroom home at 45 Saunders Drive last month, which takes the total cost of the adjacent properties to just over $64 million.

It is rumoured they will reside in the home while the main residence is renovated.

Saunders Street has also attracted Colleen Howson, wife of Bronte who heads the Automotive Holdings Group in WA.

Mrs Howson bought a mansion on the street for $8.45 million in March last year.

Real estate seems to be a family affair for Robert Franco, who forked out $9 million for a mansion at 36 Jutland Parade, Dalkeith, in November last year.

Mr Franco is the finance director at the family's Fero Group, alongside his father and brother, who also own property on the same riverfront street.

Perth's own Dr Phil, eye surgeon Phillip McGeorge, and wife Katherine sold their home at 34 Jutland Parade, Dalkeith, for $8 million this year. The sale makes way for an imminent move to their 1 Chidley Way, Mosman Park, home, which was built by Burswood Casino developer Dallas Dempster.

Businessman Jon Fogarty snagged 2 Hawkstone Street, Cottesloe, next door to Alan Bond, for $7.25 million.

Other notable sales in the past 15 months include 1 Riverway in Applecross for $7.175 million, 15 Hopetoun St, South Perth, for $6.8 million, and 34 Brockman Avenue, Dalkeith, for $6.5 million.

Currently on the market is 2 Chidley Way, Mosman Park, which is owned by Sharon Creasy, the former wife of prospector Mark, and which may fetch more than $25 million.

Broome pearl farmer Lyndon Brown is expecting $17 million for his mansion at 52 The Esplanade, Peppermint Grove, a stone's throw from Mr Satterley and Mr Plunkett.

Rio Tinto chief executive Sam Walsh and wife Leanne are believed to have sold their Bay View, Peppermint Grove, property, which was listed for $8.75 million, in the past few days though the deal has not yet settled.

The home at 8 Bishop Road, Dalkeith, is believed to have sold for $8.4 million, though this property has not settled either.

Prominent real estate agent Mack Hall said the recovery in the luxury sector had been slow but sure.

"About two or three years ago there was no one around who wanted to buy (in the luxury market)," he said.

"Now there are people around but they are still driving a hard bargain."

The West Australian

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