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25/10/18

Millionaires Tony Denny, John Singleton ready to bring Gosford into 21st century

TWO of Australia’s wealthiest and most powerful businessmen, Tony Denny and John Singleton, are teaming up to transform Gosford into a city of dreams — and then sell it to the world.

In an exclusive interview with the Express Advocate, Mr Denny — who now calls the Coast home after building a $333 million fortune out of selling second-hand cars in Europe — revealed he and Mr Singleton had been holding talks on joining forces to bring Gosford into the 21st century.

Millionaire advertising guru John Singleton is understood to have pumped about $40 million into promoting Gosford over the past 20 years. Former used-car sales king Tony Denny has revealed his frustrations with the lack of progress in Gosford.

“I’m in regular discussions with John and his CEO Monique (Marks) and (Primo Group CEO) Paul Lederer about what they are doing. We’re considering putting together a PR team to promote Gosford because of the frustrations we have.”

Mr Singleton, who is just ahead of Mr Denny at No. 155 on the 2016 BRW rich list with a $416 million fortune, said he was delighted the former used-car sales king had come on board the Gosford growth bandwagon.

“Tony is a great guy and it’s so good to see someone else pushing the Central Coast,” the advertising guru said.

“I’ll never give up on the region; one day common sense must prevail and acknowledge what a sensational place we live in.”

Tony Denny in a Kombi at his $70 million classic car museum at West Gosford. Picture: Sue Graham

The Express Advocate understands Mr Singleton has pumped about $40 million into trying to improve Gosford, through various initiatives, over the past 20 years.

The billion-dollar brothers’ plans extend much further than a pie shop and office block for bureaucrats on the waterfront.

The old Brisbane Water County Council and Frogys site at Gosford is in major disrepair.

Mr Denny, who came back to holiday regularly on the Coast during his 24 years living in the Czech Republic, has revealed his full $190 million property development plans to boost Gosford and surrounding suburbs.

The Frogys site reflects the decaying side of Gosford’s CBD.

However, the fiercely private Mr Denny, said he was frustrated by the lengthy delays on development applications for Gosford projects before Central Coast Council.

“Look, we still have a good relationship with council, but we have some DAs in that are taking a little bit longer (in the approval process) than they should be. If things could move a bit quicker I’d be happy,” he said.

Millionaire developer Tony Denny, pictured at Bells at Killcare last week, is frustrated by DA delays at Central Coast Council.

The man who opened a $70 million classic car museum at West Gosford described Mr Singleton as the “modern-day father of Gosford”.

“If only the Coast knew just how much John does for the region,” Mr Denny said. “He doesn’t broadcast a lot of it. He’s really a silent achiever for the Central Coast.”

Gosford is in dire need of better promotion and a waterfront facelift, two of the region’s richest men say.

DENNY DRIVING DEVELOPMENT

MR DENNY’S $190 million property development plans for the Central Coast involve 10 projects either under construction or in the planning process.

The 54-year-old Killcare Heights resident said he had already spent about $60 million in buying properties around the region “and then there’ll be another $130 million through the construction phase”.

The Express Advocate can today exclusively reveal Mr Denny’s latest project is a “high-end” development called Marina on the Point Frederick waterfront.

Magnificent waterfront views from Tony Denny’s new “Marina” boutique apartments in Point Frederick.

“Marina is a boutique collection of just 29, two and three-bedroom residences of the finest architectural pedigree, elevating Point Frederick’s calibre of design to new heights,” Mr Denny said of the Lynn Ave development which will be officially unveiled on October 28.

Tony Denny’s new “Marina” boutique apartments situated on the Point Frederick waterfront. They will be launched on October 28.

It follows the highly successful debut launch by his development company, Central Real, of the Vue apartments in Kendall St, Gosford. Working in conjunction with McGrath Estate Agents, the founder of the $70 million Gosford Classic Car Museum offered struggling firsthome buyers a $10,000 furniture voucher, a reduced deposit and an exclusive head start to buy a new apartment.

“This has gone gangbusters,” Mr Denny said.

“There has been strong interest from buyers, both local and from Sydney, with 80 per cent of the project now exchanged or deposited.”

Waterfront views from Tony Denny’s new “Marina” boutique apartments in Point Frederick.

The project closest to Mr Denny’s heart is the former Country Comfort site, for which he paid $9.6 million last year — Terrigal’s highest residential development site sale in 15 years.

“The latest here is we’re demolishing at the site and we’ve bought two properties just behind it in Ena St, so there’ll potentially be further access there,” he said.

“We want to move our offices there because we love the site so much.”

The former Country Comfort site in Terrigal is shaded in red.

He considered building a hotel on the site, “but we just couldn’t make the numbers work”.

Mr Denny said he was preparing to sell his most controversial purchase, the Church St carpark in Terrigal, where he planned to put in a mixed-use development.

It sparked howls of protest from business owners, including a doctor’s surgery, over the impact it would have on the already tight parking situation in Terrigal.

“This has been a bit controversial,” Mr Denny said.

“We’ve actually decided to sell it. For me, it’s too much of a controversial situation.

“I do get the doctor’s perspective. I’ve meet with them countless times.”

Tony Denny with a 300SL Gulling 1955 at the opening of his $70 million Gosford Classic Car Museum earlier this year.

He has other property developments in the works in Gosford, including a 64-apartment block called Icon, as well as 30 high-end units called Scenic which are due for release in late January, and two townhouse sites in East Gosford.

At Point Frederick, a 45-apartment development called Aqua is planned for 142-144 Albany St.

“This will be extremely high-end luxury,” Mr Denny said.

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