The COVID-19 Hotel, Rydges on Swanston, Sold during Melbourne lockdown.

The hotel at the centre of the state government’s messy quarantine program has been purchased in a multimillion-dollar deal by a private developer.

The buyer planning an “extensive refurbishment and repositioning” of the property as a high-end hotel and conference facility. The aim to reopen next year.

After hitting the market in July with price expectations circling $40m, the 107-room hotel at 701 Swanston St fetched about $35m.

Despite prospective buyers being unable to physically inspect the property due to its use as a quarantine site for returned overseas travellers, it attracted an array of enquiries & a dozen bids.

Commercial property is going to be a hot topic in the media and across the industry over the next few months. The sector is operating in a very constrained environment due to the ban on physical inspections.

The Victorians Governments road map to reopening revealed physical inspections would not be permitted again until at least October 26, and only if the state recorded fewer than five daily cases over the two weeks prior to that date.