Robt. Jones Holdings


PHOTO: Robt. Jones Holdings Limited Sir Robert Jones

Robt. Jones Holdings Ltd (RJH) has added to its existing portfolio of 17 prime location Wellington CBD buildings, buying the recently strengthened 10-level Civic Assurance House. The company is already a significant owner of Lambton Quay property.

RJH Wellington General Manager Aaron Leechsaid the company would embark on an upgrade of the building, including large new windows, air-conditioning, free artwork for the occupants, and subdued classical music in the foyer.

“We’re wavering on the unusual façade pattern and will probably rebrand this to a more conventional appearance. Its location is a key attraction for us, with its appeal to the legal profession, embassies and other diverse activities.”

The deal was negotiated by Hamish Templeton and Richard Findlay of Colliers International in Wellington.

“Lambton Quay is a tightly held location where buildings rarely come up for sale. Office accommodation is experiencing its lowest vacancy in years and we have seen a shift towards the northern end of the CBD,” Templeton said.

Civic Financial Services has owned the property since it was built in 1967. It was first known as the Local Government Building before changing its name to Civic Assurance House in 2007. Strengthening work by Civic Financial Services was completed in April 2019, taking the building to 70% NBS.

Ian Brown, chief executive of Civic Financial Services, said the company’s focus no longer requires it to hold any commercial property.

“It is very pleasing that the new owner has a long history of involvement within Wellington’s commercial real estate market, with a reputation of taking a long-term view of ownership and care of its properties.”

Located on the preferred western side of Lambton Quay, and with dual access also onto The Terrace, the building is close to the government sector, the courts and all public transport, most particularly the Wellington Railway Station.