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The very rich businessman behind the sale of renowned 'Downtown Abbey of Australia'

Chemist Warehouse tycoon Mario Verrocchi has bought Mount Eliza’s waterfront Morning Star Estate for an estimated $40million.

The seaside property, dubbed ‘Downtown Abbey of Australia’, is about 54 kilometres south of Melbourne and is spread across 63.2 hectares. 

It features a grand Victorian mansion, a 12 hectare vineyard and even a helipad.

Chemist Warehouse tycoon Mario Verrocchi has bought Mount Eliza's waterfront Morning Star Estate (pictured, the mansion) for an estimated $40million

Chemist Warehouse tycoon Mario Verrocchi has bought Mount Eliza’s waterfront Morning Star Estate (pictured, the mansion) for an estimated $40million

The seaside property, dubbed 'Downtown Abbey of Australia', is about 54 kilometres south of Melbourne and is 63.2 hectares (pictured, the garden's dramatic water feature)

The seaside property, dubbed ‘Downtown Abbey of Australia’, is about 54 kilometres south of Melbourne and is 63.2 hectares (pictured, the garden’s dramatic water feature)

Property agent Michael Keating would not divulge who the buyer was but records show Mr Verrocchi, who is chief executive of the group comprising the Chemist Warehouse and My Chemist chains, placed a caveat on the property on September 24. 

A caveat prevents another buyer from registering interest in a property ahead of theirs.

The purchase of the property comes just three months after it was put on the market with the asking price of $40million. 

Mr Keating told the Herald Sun the buyer was planning to have the property for his family in the future. 

‘There is nothing else like it in Australia. You’ve got 157 acres (63ha) with beach frontage, less than an hour from a capital city that’s soon to be Australia’s largest. It’s a no-brainer.’

The purchase of the property comes just three months after it was put on the market with the asking price of $40million (pictured, inside the mansion)

The purchase of the property comes just three months after it was put on the market with the asking price of $40million (pictured, inside the mansion)

The Morning Star Estate was established by Londoner Francis Gillett in the 1860s. He had used it as a 'summer palace' (pictured, the view onto the lush gardens)

The Morning Star Estate was established by Londoner Francis Gillett in the 1860s. He had used it as a ‘summer palace’ (pictured, the view onto the lush gardens)

The Morning Star Estate was established by Londoner Francis Gillett in the 1860s. 

He had used it as a ‘summer palace’.

The property was later transformed into the Morning Star Boys’ Home in the 1930s before becoming a 20-room hotel and a wedding venue. 

Mr Verrocchi’s business partner Jack Gance also has an impressive property portfolio. 

Last year he and his wife Evelynne Gance paid a whopping $30million for two mansions in Melbourne’s Toorak.

Jack Gance co-founded the Chemist Warehouse (store pictured) empire with Mario Verrocchi in 2000 and now has 400 stores across Australia and New Zealand

Jack Gance co-founded the Chemist Warehouse (store pictured) empire with Mario Verrocchi in 2000 and now has 400 stores across Australia and New Zealand

Mario Verrocchi (pictured with Fiona Verrocchi) has bought Mount Eliza's waterfront Morning Star Estate for an estimated $40million

Mario Verrocchi (pictured with Fiona Verrocchi) has bought Mount Eliza’s waterfront Morning Star Estate for an estimated $40million

The two blocks combined will monopolise a large portion in one of the city’s most exclusive suburb, expanding more than 4,250 squares metres and do not have overlays.

Mr Gance is the co-founder and chairman of My Chemist Retail Group, an Australian pharmacy company comprising of Chemist Warehouse and My Chemist stores.

The enterprise was launched in 2000 and now operates 400 stores across Australia and New Zealand.

He was valued at $989million on the most recent Financial Review Rich List.

WHAT IS THE MORNING STAR ESTATE?

The Morning Star Estate in Mount Eliza is 4 kilometres south of Melbourne.

The property features a grand Victorian mansion, a 12ha vineyard and even a a helipad.

It was built in 1867 for the Gillett family.

The estate served as the Morning Star Boys Home before becoming a horse stud. 

It was also a 25-room hotel and wedding venue.

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