Francesca Packer Barham buys Encore, Elizabeth Bay apartment

Francesca Packer Barham buys Encore, Elizabeth Bay apartment
Francesca Packer Barham buys Encore, Elizabeth Bay apartment

Francesca Packer Barham, fashion curator and daughter of heiress Gretel Packer and English financier Nicholas Barham, has bought a highrise Elizabeth Bay apartment.

Her $2.1 million was an off market purchase in the pet friendly, Encore.

It was sold by the investment company of the Odillo Maher family, with major shareholders being the financier Tim Odillo Maher and his fashionista wife, Victoria Montano.

It is expected Barham Packer will spruce the apartment up given she is competing an interior design course which sees her follow in the footsteps of her mother who was into interior design when she co-ran Barham and Bragg Design.

Rising 15 levels above Elizabeth Bay Road, Encore comprises 78 luxury apartments in the 2003 Mirvac development. The Packer purchase is a two bedroom 155 sqm apartment with views over Rushcutters Bay.

It was once the site of the Sebel hotel, the former haunt of early celebrity with the likes of Elton John staying there. The complex was named after the hotel's restaurant.

Initial off the plan prices in 2001 ranged from $500,000 for a one-bedroom unit to $4 million-plus for a penthouse. The Packer apartment first sold at $980,000, then at $1,625,000 in 2012.

When last marketed it was billed as flooded with north-east sunshine with floor-to-ceiling glass framing views of "parklands, bobbing boats and the glittering harbour."

"A short walk to cafes, shops, parks, transport and lifestyle, this cosmopolitan apartment is big on quality and style," the sales spiel said.

She has recently broken up with her Melbourne beau, so Melbourne estate agents are wondering what she'll being doing with her recent South Yarra purchase.

The Sydney Confidential reported she'd quit Melbourne having split with property developer Kelli Holland earlier this year. 

Her purchase was a rather pricey Fawkner Park, South Yarra house that cost around $6 million last October.

Her financier was a company directed by her mum, Gretel. 

Set in a cluster of some of Melbourne's finest homes, the prominent freestanding Victorian residence hadn't traded since 1990 when it sold for $1.2 million.

Continuing the era behind its Victorian facade are two grand reception rooms, an arched hallway, tall ceilings, marble fireplaces mantles and raw timber doors.

The stately four bedroom home - one with Juliet balcony - also has a home office.

Francesca is the eldest grandchild of the late media tycoon Kerry Packer and his widow, Ros. Packer Barham, who has been studying psychology at the University of Sydney, has been living at Double Bay with her three dogs - Louis, Elizabeth Taylor and Minnie Mouse.

Prior to that was the Bellevue Hill mini compound of her mother, next to Gretel's 1919 home, Wiston.

It was a $4 million purchase of an adjoining house which the Packer's bought from the Fairfax family in 2013.

Her grandmother Ros lives at nearby Cairnton, the huge compound whose ownership dates back to 1935 when Sir Frank Packer started to buy up some hillside property.

This article was first published in the Sunday Telegraph.

Residential Sale

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