Cate Blanchett and her husband, Sydney Theatre Company artistic director Andrew Upton, have spent nearly $2 million on a waterfront apartment in Elizabeth Bay.
Sources close to the sale said the purchase is an investment for their three sons, Dashiell, 12, Roman, 9, and Ignatius, 5, which makes the couple part of Sydney's emerging kippers (kids in parents pockets eroding retirement savings) trend.
Blanchett, who won a Golden Globe last week for her lead performance in Woody Allen's Blue Jasmine, had hoped to buy two adjoining, two and three-bedroom apartments in the Billyard Avenue block, marketed with a price guide of $1.6 million-plus and $1.8 million-plus. However, having bought the two-bedder for $1.92 million, Blanchett failed to secure the three-bedder.
Records show the larger apartment sold for $2.435 million to a director at metals producer BCD Resources, Clive Carroll. Jason Boon, of Richardson & Wrench Elizabeth Bay, sold the apartments on behalf of arborist George Palmer, marketed with the option of buyers purchasing both for $3.5 million as one, whole-floor spread. Mr Boon is overseas and unavailable for comment.
It was a highly competitive auction, according to buyer's agent Henry Wilkinson, of Homesearch Solutions, who was in the room to bid for a client but failed to secure a property.
"The agents were surprised by the result because they both sold for well over their asking price," Mr Wilkinson said. "The two-bedroom apartment needed a bit of work actually, and even though it has the better aspect to the north, there are a few privacy issues to it from the building next door."
Neither Upton nor Blanchett were in attendance at the auction, but the source said the couple had hoped to buy the adjoining apartments for their children.
The art-deco block has been recently upgraded and comes with a harbour-front garden, a swimming pool and a jetty.
Sydney parents buying real estate for young children is becoming more common in Sydney. In October, lawyer Dion Vertzayas spent $710,000 on a Potts Point apartment as an investment for his five-year-old son Dean.