Two months after putting the thirteen-story Recoleta property on the auction block, Uruguay has sold its embassy in Buenos Aires for an estimated 36% haircut.

Officially announced in April, the bid process for the property at the corner of Las Heras and Ayacucho closed on June 5th with a total of five bids submitted from Nicolas Billa, Morning Mist Limited, CEP Consultora Empresarial, Stream Flow Limited and the Fundacion Hector Alejandro Barcelo (HAB), according to El Pais.

The winning bid of US$12.5 million was submitted by the HAB Foundation which plans to convert the former embassy into a biomedical science research center. HAB’s original bid was US$11.5 million, but the Uruguay government countered and encouraged the group to raise their bid knowing it was the only offer in the ballpark of consideration.

With over 6,800 square meters (73,000 square feet) of interior space, seven floors of office space, two floors of apartments for embassy staff, and a large terrace with an outdoor grill, local analysts placed a value on the property around US$17 million or US$2,500 per square meter. The property sold for US$1,838 per square meter or US$171 per square foot.

The Uruguay Minister of Foreign Relations said the HAB bid was selected because “it was the most convenient from a quantitative point of view since it was higher than the other bids and qualitative considering they will maintain the original structure and murals on the exterior of the building.”

Once the property changes hands, the Uruguay embassy offices will be relocated to the ambassador’s residence on Alcorta Avenue while the Uruguay consulate offices will move to the Banco de la Republica building downtown. (Full Story in Spanish)

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